What Was the Motivation?

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Last Tuesday night, a highly respected City Director took time at the Mill Creek City Council meeting under the public comment portion of the meeting to make glowing accolades and offer his support for his boss, City Manager Rebecca Polizzotto.

This action is unprecedented, inappropriate and unprofessional. Directors serve at the pleasure of the City Manager, and this type of action is very suspicious given the fact she has recently come under heavy criticism for her management style. Directors should not align themselves with political issues, especially from the podium in a public meeting. In my opinion, he crossed the line of professionalism.

Why did this Director feel motivated to use the Public Comment portion of the meeting to do this? He should have known better. Directors are not paid to be the voice for their boss. She is highly compensated and should fight her own battles.

I will ask one more time, what was the motivation?

Lynn D. Sordel
Mill Creek City Councilmember


Director Tom Gathmann is retiring in a few months and he's highly respect by the council and the public. There is no way anyone could touch him even if they wanted to.

I Support Our City Manager

With Lynn Sordel's most recent letter (News of Mill Creek, "What Was The Motivation?", 11/13/16), I can no longer remain silent and let our City Manager, Rebecca Polizzotto, be trashed through the press and social medial. (These are my personal comments and opinions as a 13-year resident of Mill Creek.)

There has been much written recently by a few disgruntled former City employees and the AFSCME Union (which represents 27 of the approximately 65 City employees), and by three former City Council members, including Mr. Sordel, regarding Ms. Polizzotto.

At the Council's November 8th meeting, Tom Gathmann read a letter on behalf of the entire management team expressing their support for Ms. Polizzotto. Mr. Gathmann is a member of the City's management team and a former Interim City Manager. Mr. Sordel calls this letter "unprecedented, in appropriate and unprofessional," and questions Mr. Gathmann's motivation. Really??!!

What I find "unprecedented, in appropriate and unprofessional" is Mr. Sordel accepting the allegations of former employees and AFSCME as true without bothering to even talk with Ms. Polizzotto. Instead, he, along with two other former Council members, is using the press and social media to unfairly wage a campaign to publicly -- and in my opinion entirely unfairly -- vilify Ms. Polizzotto in the proverbial "court of public opinion."

I take solace, however, in the fact that Mr. Sordel, the two other former Council members, and the handful of disgruntled former employees are only a loud "vocal minority." As Mr. Gathmann's comments and letter reflect, the management team and majority of City staff support our City Manager. Ms. Polizzotto is doing great work to address the long-standing structural budget issues and many other problems that have persisted for years. The citizens of Mill Creek should be proud of the work she and her team are doing.

I trust my fellow citizens of Mill Creek will not, as Mr. Sordel and others have done, unfairly rush to judge Ms. Polizzotto, or to question the motivations of our employees who support her.

Brian Holtzclaw
13-year resident of Brighton

Again, you misinterpret

Mr Holtzclaw, I am trying with great patience to not condemn the city manager. I hear things; you hear things; other people hear things and there are many who actually know things.

I was not disgruntled. I was not involved. I had nothing to complain about. Until, out of desperation, employees, past and current, have pleaded with me to try and get the council to AT LEAST PAY ATTENTION AND LOOK AT WHAT IS HAPPENING.

Are you afraid of having an investigation? Are you afraid of finding out what the conditions really are? Are you happy with what is going on right now? with 20%+ of your work already gone? and more to come.

Please, before you say "Well, some of them were retiring anyway, some of them moved closer".. etc. etc.,, talk to each of them. Ask them. Why were they asked to re-write their resignations letters to sound better (which by the way is illegal). Why did one re-write three times, and then the City manager finished it for him?

Why don't you be the council member who steps up and says "I want to know the TRUTH". or can't you handle the truth? Maybe you and council would rather not know what you have allowed to happen to your own employees.

You haven't lived here as long as many of those employees have worked here, Brian. Doesn't it disturb you at all? Aren't you even curious, that perhaps you are misreading the situation? Wouldn't you like all this to go away?

Call Seabold and Associates and talk to them about their procedure and how they can help you learn exactly what the truth is.

My offer still stands. If you have an independent investigator bring a report to you, after a thorough, and fair review, and I am found to be misled, lied to, misunderstood, and that I just happen to know the dissidents and unhappy, whiny, lazy employees, then I will personally stand in council chambers and apologize to you, the rest of the council and to City manager Polizzotto.

But, I also ask, if the opposite is found to be true, will you apologize to us, and the citizens of Mill Creek for allowing this erosion of our precious resources? Will you apologize for trying to shame those of us who only seek justice in our work place?

We are citizens here also. We have other things to do. We find ourselves in a situation, in which we can not just be quiet. Sorry, but when bad things happen, a few good people have to step up and demand that we find out what the heck is going on.

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