I don’t know how many of you stayed up for the final minutes of Tuesday’s marathon City Council meeting, but I have to admit, after watching it from three in the afternoon, I finally turned it off about 10:20.
I should have kept watching.
I didn’t see Brian Heady come up to speak and reiterate the points he made at the public Canvassing Board meeting on September 20; namely he claimed that whatever might have happened to his (and Linda Hillman’s) candidate applications, had to occur between the time they were handed in to the City Clerk and the day both of them were disqualified.
Linda Hillman then spoke to a sequence of events, beginning with filing her candidate application on July 9 up to Friday, September 7, at 5:00 p.m., when the filing period ended. “I was told at ten minutes to five that everything is fine.”
Apparently everything was fine until the following Tuesday, September 11, when Hillman was told about her disqualification. Then she recalled the August 21 City Council meeting, which did not seem relevant to her disqualification at the time.
Hillman: “A City Council member said he took copies of my file and printed them. I can give you the exact time, Mr. Zudans.”
Hearing that, Zudans said, “Are you saying it was me?”
Hillman: “Yes. At 5:31:40 you said you printed my file.”
Zudans: “I didn’t say that. I said someone told me that Alla Kramer was your treasurer, so I went to the (City) website.”
Hillman: “You didn’t say that either. You accused me of having Ken Daige as my treasurer.”
Zudans: “I got mixed up. I apologized.”
Hillman: “You didn’t get mixed up when you downloaded my files, you printed my file and took a snapshot of it on your phone.”
Zudans: “I never physically touched your file in the office. What are you insinuating?”
Fortunately, the City maintains a video of that August 21 meeting. At precisely 5:31:40 p.m. Zudans says about Hillman’s file, “I printed it out and took a screen shot of it.”
Back to the October 2 City Council meeting, Hillman continued with her timeline, saying that she received a call from City Clerk Tammy Bursick at 9:37 a.m. on Monday, September 10, asking her to come in and sign a form that she had left blank. “I signed in at City Hall at 10:48 and signed the form. Then at around twenty minutes to two, Tammy called to say I was disqualified.”
Hillman says Bursick told her that Ryan Bass, a member of the Finance Committee, had called to file a complaint that Hillman should be disqualified. Bass, who was in attendance, rushed up to the podium and said, “I never filed a complaint. That is factually incorrect. I want it cleared up now.”
Bursick: “He (Bass) brought it to my attention. He called and asked me to look at the files, that something was not signed.”
Bass: “I did not call you.”
Bursick: “I had a message to call you and I called you back.”
Bass: “I did not file any complaint.”
Bursick: “I have nothing in writing.”
Complaints like this do not have to be made in writing.
Then Hillman, who was still at the podium, “It’s really suspicious that there was never any written complaints, but all these phone calls. Tammy had one in the morning from Mr. Sykes but she was in a meeting and tried to call him back. Mr. Zudans spoke to the City Manager in the morning and Tammy received a call from Mr. Bass.”
Bass: “Again, I did not file a complaint. I walked in to the City office and asked for copies of all the candidates’ forms. I did not even point out the fact that Linda Hillman did not sign her paperwork. That was pointed out to me.”
This presents two more questions that were not addressed at the meeting: Why was Bass in the office making copies of all the candidates’ forms? Who pointed out to Bass that Hillman did not sign her paperwork?
I invite anyone with answers to these questions or anyone who disputes anything written in this story to send comments on the comment link. You are welcome to review the videos from this and all City Council meetings at the COVB.org website. In some cases above, I summarized rather lengthy exchanges, but they are still accurate in the points that were made.