The point I took from his stunt was that raising questions about policy is wrong in the beginning and that discussion on legislation should be limited and tightly controlled by committees that many of us who work for a living don't have time to attend. In other words, Steine's point was to discourage any probing, far-reaching or no-holds-barred discussion on an important economic development policy favored by the Davidson County executive who otherwise does what he wills, remotely detached from the citizens affected by the policy.
Steine's comments yesterday to a news organization on a different Dean economic development policy that sailed smoothly through the council indicates that the at-Large CM chooses to have it both ways:
Steine, a Dean ally who is running to keep his at-large council seat, said the administration should be responsible for the due diligence. The mayor’s office has staff resources, is designed from a governance perspective to handle such deals and is better able to work with companies on privacy concerns early on, he said.
Shorter Steine: "STFU about IQT"
But he considers it hypocritical for Dean critics to be speaking up now, instead of back when they had the chance to raise questions.
“My perspective is that I think there was a reasonable amount of due diligence done,” he said, adding that there probably are lessons on what else to look at in the future.
As if CM Steine would not have pulled another parliamentary stunt to limit consideration when the discussion was just getting going. As the Mayor's ally, Ronnie Steine's job is to hammer Dean's policies through the least amount of resistance. Claiming now that resistant questioning was facilitated--especially when Dean critics have to weather hails of anonymous source invective repeated by local newspaper reporters and amplified by columnists in the following days--is dishonest.
If all of these questions were appropriate before council approved, they remain appropriate irregardless of council procedure. CMs who fail to follow-up on this fiasco by demanding to know what happened ultimately fail us.