Little of what Hinote does as deputy mayor is done publicly. And because he's so allergic to the spotlight, in the absence of any cultivated public profile, a vague reputation has coalesced around him — that of the mayor's behind-the-scenes enforcer, dispatched whenever the Dean administration needs to bring down the hammer.
Greg Hinote in the blue shirt
Without prompting, two sources independently pointed the Scene to the same example. And for once, the nail — in this case, former Metro Parks Director Roy Wilson — is more than happy to go on the record.
Wilson left his Metro post in December 2009 under a cloud of controversy, following seven-figure budget overruns that he said the Dean administration knew were coming. At a hearing prior to his departure, which one source recalls as a "public shaming," several council members defended him against what they saw as excessive punishment for a sin other departments committed frequently.
Two-and-a-half years later, Wilson — now director of the Dekalb County Recreation, Parks and Cultural Affairs Department in Decatur, Ga. — says he was "railroaded and treated terribly unfairly."
"And it had a lot to do with Greg Hinote," he says....
Now, Wilson says, the only word he can think of for Hinote is "evil." He still believes the deputy mayor was the anonymous source behind critical coverage of him in The Tennessean and the Scene.
Not the first time we have read rumblings of unprincipled actions among Karl Dean's men.
I followed the unfolding Roy Wilson drama in 2009 and blogged several times on it myself here.