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Misconceptions on city controversy addressed
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A sad situation addressed

Dear readers,

At the end of the City Council meeting Monday, an individual stepped forward and disrespectfully confronted Councilman Joel Jackson about not attending the council’s special meeting called for the Friday before. This individual stated how he had been to Mr. Jackson’s home beating on his door demanding for him to come out on Friday evening, and had been there more than once, stating that Mr. Jackson was home, to which Mr. Jackson stated not true. The media did not state Mr. Jackson’s response but chose to only report the disrespectful comments of a bully as if they were true.

 It is being said that people and businesses that support Mr. Couch are being told they are anti-Great Bend, and these same folks think ads that have been placed simply stating Positive Facts about this community are making an attempt to call someone stupid, and that people promoting and giving away t shirts saying I love Great Bend are doing so to try convince someone what to think. Is it really that hard for this group of people to accept that there really are people in this community that do love Great Bend and are not ashamed to say it, that there are so many positive things to be said about this community that in a time like this they are willing to spend money from their own pockets to remind people of the good. The nice thing about those things, they are all facts, wonderful facts,

about a community that is still a great place. These same folks think this group of positive people is some small group trying to control Great Bend somehow, I would suggest it is a far larger group than they believe, they just chose to be respectful of each other, and even when they disagree, they do it with respect, they are not trying to “run” a city, they simply want to encourage what is good here in Great Bend.

After the meeting Monday evening I had the opportunity to provide actual fact regarding a rumor about MyTown and a loan they received from the city for 330,000.

It has been stated over and over that this loan was not being repaid to the city and that there was corruption of some sort with this. The fact is,that this loan is current and has been since it’s inception a number of years ago.

A fact any of those folks stating this untrue rumor could have found if they would have just taken 5 minutes of time.

But as it so often happens these days people spend more time shouting corruption without any facts, than looking for truth.

They seem to try take items from several points of context and weave them into a story that holds no truth but is filled with innuendos in an attempt to serve their own purpose, a sad path for our community.

As always, with respect to all.

Mark Bitter

Great Bend

 Dear editor,

I want to address a few items I see being thrown out for public consumption, items that never seem to be supported by any facts, and when there is a chance for actual fact, the lack of it being given.

There is not  room to address all, but here are a few.

In the middle of all the controversy to reinstate Mr. Couch, people including those on our city council seem to forget he was suspended with possibility of termination, or hearing, on the reasons for his suspension.

Couch chose to have a hearing, then possibly due to the strength of the allegations he decided to hire a different attorney.

This attorney asked for the hearing deadline of 14 days to be extended due to his schedule, a schedule which still hasn’t allowed this to happen. Is it possible this attorney is hoping to stall for a city council now weakened by harassment to simply reinstate Couch without having to face those allegations.

If this is the case, why?

If the allegations are so frivolous, would not a fair hearing show that?

All city council members should be in favor of clearing the air correctly, should we not allow the facts to speak?

I know there is mention that this suspension was unwarranted, but there certainly is no information or history in the city administration to suggest this.

Another point of interest, when I asked how often a department head had been suspended or terminated during the time Mr. Partington was serving Great Bend, I was told Mr. Couch was the first one that anyone remembered, so it certainly does not point to a practice of accusation without cause. There is also some misinformation that this hearing for Mr. Couch is about allegations against Mr. Partington, that is not true, it is about allegations against Mr. Couch.

 Monday evening at the scheduled city council meeting, it seemed to be a breath of fresh air from recent events. I was proud as people, no matter what their view, applauded the worthwhile efforts of Christina Hayes as a group, it made me realize the division in this community still offers hope that we can heal together soon.

But I also feel a few key facts are missing from the reporting done about the meeting.

It was suggested there was no action taken by the city council on the agenda of the emergency Friday night meeting. The reason there was no action Monday was because Dana Dawson made a motion to add the Friday agenda to Mondays meeting, but when Mr. Jackson arrived a few minutes late to the meeting, Dawson, who had already made his motion, then asked for the motion to add the agenda from the Friday meeting to be withdrawn, he choose to not have what he had deemed as an “emergency” on Friday to be addressed, when the very member of the council arrived who they wanted to arrive so badly on Friday.

And when speaking of Fridays “emergency meeting” it should be noted that yes, Mayor Mike Allison did call that meeting, but he did it by city ordinance that a meeting was requested and signed by a certain number of council members which it was, they were told at that time Mr Allison and council member Berryman would not be available due to medical appointments.

So it was not the mayor calling a meeting and not showing up as is being said over and over.

It is interesting that whatever Dawson saw as an “emergency on Friday” no longer even warranted discussion on Monday.

Mark Bitter

Great Bend