Well the minutes reported by the Township were accurate if somewhat incomplete (wasn’t that what I was accused of?) Here is the text from the meeting minutes:
Excerpt of 11/19/2008 Lower Nazareth Township Meeting Minutes (Comments Follow):
Lower Nazareth Citizens Website Issues (Managers Report)
Mr. Tenges expressed his displeasure with the tactics employed by Mr. Green regarding his website. He stated he felt that it is extremely unfair of Mr. Greene to sit through a presentation or discussion of the Board, and not ask a single question regarding a particular topic and then proceed to post the subject on his website along with conjecture and innuendo about the topic. Mr. Tenges indicated that if Mr. Greene would simply asked a question regarding any subject he would be provided with a thorough explanation. Mr. Tenges mentioned that the Board provides ample time throughout every meeting for the public to comment or question them or the Manager regarding any subject being discussed. The point was made that Mr. Greene apparently chooses not to be thoroughly informed about the subject matter of the Board so that he can then pose the questions on his website and paint a negative picture of the Township. The theory presented by Mr. Tenges was that there ‘would be very little to discuss on the website if in-fact Mr. Greene did have interactive discussions with the Board and Manager regarding the subject matter. He feels Mr. Greene twists things to imply the township is doing something underhanded. Mr. Tenges commented that he has tolerated these tactics long enough and felt is was time to speak out about them. Mr. Tenges indicated he felt Mr. Greene was doing a disservice to the Board and Township constituents by utilizing this divisive tactic. Mr. Tenges did acknowledge that it clearly is Mr. Greene’s right to do what he is doing. Mr. Tenges mentioned how very disappointing it is that an individual who claims to be a friend of the community will conduct themselves in this manner.
Mr. Tenges acknowledged that for the sake of expediency during meetings that he only elaborates on those topics that need to be elaborated on. Obviously, if queried, he will provide as much information as is necessary to satisfy the question. He also mentioned that it is customary for reporters from the local print media to query both him and the Board at the end of a meeting to make sure they have a thorough understanding of the subject matter and that this is done so that they can provide fair and accurate reporting. He indicated that Mr. Greene never has done that.
Mr. Greene stated that he volunteered to send in advance anything put on his site so that Mr. Tenges can screen prior to it being posted; however Mr. Tenges never took him up on the offer. Mr. Tenges said that he doesn’t have time to edit and screen everything Mr. Greene posts on his site. Mr. Tenges said that he has no qualms whatsoever and that it is clearly Mr. Greene’s prerogative to disagree with an action of the Board or him and that he can report and comment accordingly. That is not a problem. The problem is the conjecture and hypothesis promoted without a thorough understanding of a matter and no effort to gain that information.
Mr. Greene wanted to know what happened to the website that was funded last year and reiterated the importance of it for the citizens. Mr. Tenges recognizes the importance on the website and stated that it is close to being done, but is not quite completed. The fact that it is incomplete, Mr. Tenges admitted is his fault, but stated that unfortunately other issues take priority; such as matters that had just been dealt with by the Board and the Manager.
Mr. Greene also stated that he told Mr. Tenges that if anything on the site is untrue he will remove it immediately. Mr. Kucsan remarked that his statements are not necessarily untrue; it’s the innuendos behind the statements. Mr. Greene discussed the difference between a website and a blog. He said the blog was created in order to move the conjecture and opinions off the website and allow the website to focus on facts. Mr. Tenges questioned why, if Mr. Greene is working for the good of the residents, he doesn’t ask for items such as the Fire Company Report. To which Mr. Greene stated that funds limit what he requests from the township.
One of the comments Mr. Tenges made during this discussion which is not reflected in the minutes was that he (Mr. Tenges) was the author of the post on the News Over Coffee Blog criticizing the Lower Nazareth Citizens Forum website. (It was posted anonymously) He also stated that “my buddy” subsequently removed it. I had been actively monitoring that thread on News Over Coffee (NOC) and recalled it well. I checked when I got home and it was still in the old posts section, I have included here –> Lower Nazareth Township News this is the original post at News Over Coffee along with all comments. I would be very interested in the community’s comments on this one. At the end of the original post is an example of how questions from the public or the press are handled.
Also during the discussion I had asked for a couple examples. The only one provided was regarding a Blog entry (on this site) under the title Updates and Comments (Nov. 6, 2008) Item #3 which reads as follows:
Hmm, now that I am looking at the 11/05/08 agenda, Im not sure if LNT is advertising FOR a CPA to do the audit (a bid) or advertising that they are going to use one. If the latter, how will they be selected?
He asked why I didn’t ask for clarification at the meeting. I explained that as noted in the Blog entry, that I just noticed that line as I was making my post. The original post Item #3 has been updated with the answer provided by Mr. Tenges.