News & Features » News

A broadcast oversight?

comment

Conventional wisdom holds that Mayor Glenda Hood has done everything short of sabotage to keep Orlando City Council meetings from appearing on government-access cable television.

She's too manipulative, some say. All along she has appeared to be receptive to the idea, though vaguely put off by it.

Now comes news of a couple of E-mails that might prove the decisive point. Both were composed by the city's grant writer, Stacey Manning.

In the first, sent last December, she alerted Chief Administrative Officer Richard Levey that federal dollars were available to buy broadcasting equipment. In the second, sent in March to Tom Kohler, head of the city's Downtown Development Board, Manning confirmed that Levey never responded to her.

Though the feds might ante up $250,000, she wrote, Levey never "let me know if he wanted to go for it." Last month, however, Levey was happy to force commissioners to cut projects from the budget to free up cash for Council TV.

City Hall spokeswoman Susan Blexrud says that Levey doesn't remember receiving the e-mail and was the wrong official to alert anyway. "We're going to pursue [grant money] the next cycle," she adds.

Even so, that doesn't help commissioners find money this year. And Levey's oversight emphasizes what many have said all along about Hood. As District 1 Commissioner Don Ammerman puts it, "He was not going do anything [Hood] disagrees with. The decision wasn't his."


We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Orlando Weekly. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Orlando Weekly, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at feedback@orlandoweekly.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Orlando Weekly Press Club for as little as $5 a month.