Bullying claim leveled against Park City official
September 22, 2015
A Park Meadows man criticized a $56 million ballot measure that would fund Park City School District construction projects during a recent City Hall meeting, bringing debate about the controversial bond election to a municipal government that has only a peripheral role in the matter.
Bill Humbert read a prepared statement about the ballot measure as City Council listened. Park City’s elected officials do not have a role in the decision making regarding the bond since the School District is a separate entity from the municipal government. The elected leadership of the School District crafted the details of the ballot measure rather than the elected leaders of the municipality of Park City.
Humbert, though, leveled a bullying claim against an unspecified member of the City Council. He declined to identify the City Councilor in a later interview.
"I am an expert on workplace bullying and speak on the topic. Sadly, one of you is one of those bullies," Humbert said, according to his prepared remarks.
He said he heard a member of the City Council speaking to a person on the Park City Board of Education during the Miners Day festivities in early September. The City Councilor provided advice to the person on the Board of Education, he claimed.
"You just have to tell the voters that either you pass the bond or we will simply levy taxes on your property and it will cost you more," Humbert quoted the City Councilor as saying.
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He related City Hall’s efforts to engage the community, mentioning in his prepared remarks the work of the municipal government’s community and public affairs manager, Phyllis Robinson.
"Very, very sad. On one hand Phyllis and staff are working hard to improve community engagement. On the other hand, this City Council member encourages bullying the voters," Humbert’s prepared remarks said.
He said a conversation like the one he described either causes voters to "rise up and truly become engaged" or it "completely destroys public engagement and this community dies as a community."
Humbert spoke during a part of City Council meetings when the elected officials take input on a variety of topics they are not scheduled to address at that time. The City Councilors typically do not engage the speakers in detailed conversations during that part of the meeting.
Voters in the School District on Election Day will decide the fate of a $56 million bond. If the ballot measure passes, the monies raised would fund an expansion of Park City High School and the construction of a new school to house fifth-graders and sixth- graders. It would also fund upgrades to athletic facilities. The School District encompasses Park City and the Snyderville Basin. Most of the population of the School District resides outside the Park City limits.
"This School Board rushed through a bond proposal that is not in the best interests of the children, the teachers, and their community," Humbert said in the prepared remarks.
Humbert said early this week a member of the City Council contacted him the day after the meeting to schedule a one-on-one talk this week.
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