After the Monday City Commissioners’ meeting, it took a while for me to distill my anger into something that may be readable. Here are a few of my thoughts directed to Commissioners’ Turner & Atwell, Mayor Dick Clapp and Dr. Larry Thompson.
Gentlemen & Gentle-lady,
Mr. Turner, at the end of the commissioners’ meeting, this past Monday, Mayor Clapp said you had brought up the sound stage idea in January, then SRQ’s Page 1, 4/7 edition, reiterated how you had come up with the idea. I then thought of Channel 6 and Larry Thompson being quoted on video as saying “Basically, one day while driving down the Trail, I saw this building (the SRQ Municipal Auditorium), and I was like, Wow, that is like a sound stage! I mean, it looks like one!”
Clip to view Dr. Thompsons' cloying bad acting, click HERE.
Seriously gentlemen, if you want to get into the film business, could you at least hire real actors to play yourselves? And perhaps you could train your stand-ins to stick with the script.
Per an email from Dick Clapp sent to a friend of mine yesterday he states “On January 26, the commission met in a workshop to discuss priorities and objectives for the next two years. One of the items was to focus on Economic Development and Recovery. A specific item approved by all the commissioners was “Pursue Soundstage: Explore opportunities with Ringling School of Art and Design within the City, with emphasis along the North Tamiami Trail corridor and in N. Sarasota. A month or so after this we received a proposal from RCAD asking us to evaluate use of the Municipal Auditorium.”
And here is where Dick Clapp kind of rearranges city history, he continues on in his email to my friend with “The city commission then voted 3-2 to discuss this proposal with Larry Thompson to understand what he really was looking for, begin a conversation about how a sound stage might help with employment and economic diversification and whether the Auditorium would be suitable.”
Now all of this may seem a bit confusing to you (if anyone out there is reading or even gives a damn) but to me, this is what pisses me off…
Mr. Turner, Mr. Clapp and Mr. Thompson, obviously you have all been in cahoots (since last year) about this auditorium takeover for a while. What is SO annoying is the cloying way you had Dr. Thompson hold a press conference, on film, badly acting as if he were just driving down Tamiami and thought “Eureka! That Municipal Auditorium building will make a great sound stage!” “What a crazy idea of mine!” “I’m going to send a proposal to the city!” “Woo wee, I’ll call Channel 6 and give them my proclamation!”
This occurred prior to the 3-2 City Commissioners vote. Maybe I’m just being a stickler for “real dates/times” but I think it’s a bit shady in that Mr. Clapp neglected to add into his email that he and Mr. Turner encouraged Dr. Thompson to write a really shoddy proposal so that they could vote on it.
I know, I know, it’s a timeline semantic, however, your constituents were not given full disclosure regarding how you were and are as much of the Ringling proposal as Dr. Thompson is. Bottom line is I don’t give a shit anymore about the timeline but you three really didn’t fully disclose that you were all in this plan together.
I will continue to pound home the fact that the Municipal Building is a historical Sarasota treasure and as our elected officials it is YOUR responsibility to recognize that you had 32 people or so at the Monday meeting in opposition of your greedy and irresponsible proposal. Also, I suspect that by allowing people like me to reserve space at the auditorium until June 2011, you are just buying time, hoping people will simmer down and then begin hacking away at the Municipal Building again.