Monday, January 17, 2011

Deanieleaks #8: Mayor's Office e-mail correspondence on the State Fairgrounds

If no other series of e-mails exchanged between the Mayor's staffers and Fairgrounds staffers makes clear the strong degree of micromanagement of PR for Karl Dean's redevelopment plan, this one should.

Dean's Legislative Director enlisted Dozier's staff to evangelize flea market vendors. A survey that came out a few weeks later indicated that vendors did not respond well to the "outreach" of those "fired up" staffers. The Mayor's Office also wanted notice each time Council Members asked a question of the State Fair staff. The level of action coordination is striking.

[Original Message]
From: Compton, Toby (Mayor's Office)
Sent: Friday, October 08, 2010 4:14 PM
To: Dozier, Buck (State Fair)
Subject: FW: meeting
Importance: High

Buck, FYI. We sent this e-mail a moment ago. I know you also spoke with Greg today. We want to bring them in and fire them up on a few things. Just wanted you to be aware, if asked.

Additionally, if Council members ask you or others at the grounds questions on Dominy's bill or things related to Hickory Hollow, we want to know. Drop me a line or give me a call.

Thanks! Have a great weekend.

Toby Compton
Office of Mayor Karl Dean
Legislative Director
(615) 862-6000

[--Forwarded Message--]
From: Compton, Toby (Mayor's Office)
Sent: Friday, October 08, 2010 4:12 PM
To: Dornan, Deborah (State Fair); Burton, Steve (State Fair)
Subject: meeting
Importance: High

Deborah [Flea Market Manager] & Steve [Director of Events at the Fairgrounds] --

Hope you are well this afternoon.

A moment ago I sent a meeting request to you both for this Wednesday, October 13th at 2p here in the courthouse. Greg Hinote [Deputy Mayor] and I would like to meet about the fairgrounds and the transition of services to Hickory Hollow Mall. After that meeting we may gather with others on the team working on this as well. If this date and time doesn't work for some reason, please let me know ASAP.

I will follow-up with you both on Monday morning to discuss a few preliminary things and to brief you a bit futher on things to be prepared for at the meeting.

If needed, and it will probably be needed in the coming weeks, my direct line is 862-6010 and my cell is xxxxxxxx. I will be working with you both on outreach, etc. to expo users and flea market vendors (among others).

Have a good weekend.

Toby Compton
Office of Mayor Karl Dean
Legislative Director
(615) 862-6000

[Reply Message]
From: Dozier, Buck (State Fair)
To: Compton, Toby (Mayor's Office)
Subject: RE: meeting
Date: Monday, October 11, 2010 2:30:53 PM

Buck is out this week, but I read this email to him over the phone so he could know what is going on. He said to let you know that he got this message. If you need anything else, just let me know. Thanks-

Kristi for Buck

We certainly cannot blame the December collapse of the Hickory Hollow lease plan on neglect on the part of the Mayor's Office. These Deanieleak e-mails indicate that they seemed to be maintaining clinch-fisted control over the marketing of the legislation. Perhaps the message was simply not marketable. Maybe no one--not flea market vendors, not CMs, not a critical mass of citizens--was buying what they were selling.

Is the racetrack demolition tack the Mayor has taken to Fairgrounds redevelopment since December any less controlled or working any better?

I will continue to publish more e-mails in the run-up to Tuesday's council consideration of the Fairgrounds bills. (Jump to Deanieleaks #1. Jump to Deanieleaks #2. Jump to Deanieleaks #3. Jump to Deanieleaks #4. Jump to Deanieleaks #5. Jump to Deanieleaks #6. Jump to Deanieleaks #7.)


The same day that Toby Compton was recruiting State Fair staffers to proselytize Expo vendors, the State Fair Director sent an e-mail to the Metro Finance Director and the Fair Board Chair warning that Fairgrounds preservation supporter and attorney Lewis Laska was snooping around the public records on past Fair Board meetings. Laska went on to publish an analysis questioning the Mayor's Plan on legal grounds.

From: Dozier, Buck (State Fair)
To: James Weaver; Riebeling, Richard (Finance - Directors Office)
Subject: Old minutes
Date: Friday, October 08, 2010 1:04:30 PM
Attachments: fax 000.tif

Attorney Lewis Laska was here all day yesterday reviewing old minutes. I am sending you a copy of the minutes that he asked my assistant to make copies of. FYI.
He says he plans on coming back again.
Thanks Buck

As far as I know no one on the Dean Team has responded to Laska's conclusions despite monitoring his research habits.

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