The County Committee called ‘The Stewardship Council’ met this morning for about three and a half hours upstairs at Greens Market. The meeting was part infomercial, part Joel Osteen “all you need is hope” sermon, and part new wave transcendentalism. The members were told to expect a member to invest sixteen hours a month on this project.
Stan Risen Takes Exception
Mr. Risen walked into the room came directly over to me and accused me of lying in my last piece. His outrage hinged on the phrase ‘religious affiliation.’ I had checked my notes prior to writing so I wondered why his umbrage. So I asked him…didn’t he say that for a group to be considered for a grant that the groups leadership would have to be multi faceted with a segment of the leadership from the faith based/religious sector? He replied yes, but I never said religious aspect!
Now I understand, we were talking semantics
While it is necessary for a group to successfully request a grant they have to have what they now refer to as ‘all ten mountains’ which includes people from a variety of backgrounds, entertainment, business, and faith based or religious, there doesn’t have to be a religious affiliation. To most of us it sounds like we’re arguing the meaning of the word “is”. Okay, it’s a Clinton reference for those too young to remember. The bottom line is organizations requesting grants don’t have to be religiously affiliated BUT they do have to have a religious or faith based segment in their hierarchy and action plan. From my point of view he’s playing politician and parsing words and to my way of thinking in the end you get the same result. Since there wasn’t an audio recording of the meeting this will have to suffice since there are people on both sides that remember the wording differently. But you do get to decide if there is really any meaningful difference in their intent.
Three separate times during the meeting John Ott a County paid facilitator from the Center of Collective Wisdom, used the phrase “every proposal will include” then a variety of ways to say someone from faith based communities.
Delay on decision to include the public
I imagine the reason for postponing a decision on whether or not to include or exclude the public, is to hope the indignation over the Stan Risen’s and John Ott’s insistence for for secrecy subsides. They like to point out the Board of Supervisors gets the ultimate decision on who gets the money. The real truth is the Board would be hard put to deny Terry Withrow and Stan Risen their “Focus on Prevention” at that late date. In for a penny in for a pound, or should I say $1 Million Dollars.
The next meeting is July 31st. Believe it or not they went through the entire month of July, except for the Fourth, and this was the day that they fewest would be absent.