Making Sausage

“Those that respect the law and love sausage should watch neither being made.” Mark Twain

In the run up to the City Council meetings where the City Council agreed to disband the Littleton Fire Department and contract with South Metro Fire Rescue (SMFR) for fire service, Council Member Carol Fey sent an email out to her constituents urging them to attend the meeting and speak on the issue if they felt comfortable. Her email also:

  • Predicted the vote would be 6 to 1 (it was).
  • Stated it would cost the citizens more (a tax increase is on the ballot this November).
  • Said the firefighers believed they will be better treated by SMFR (the union endorsed the merger).
  • Pointed out the Council did not compare the costs of merging with any other entity (it didn’t ).
  • Stated that citizens up to that point had no opportunity at a public meeting to voice their concern (the meeting Fey was urging the citizen attend was the first public hearing on the merger.)

Fey’s email incensed Mayor Debbie Brinkman, who fired off an email to Council Member Fey after the first of the two meetings (April 4) calling her behavior disappointing and disturbing, expressed her desire to censure Fey, and accused Fey of throwing the Council “under the bus.”

Do as I consult – not as I do

Throwing the Council under the bus is certainly something Debbie has lots of experience with. Debbie sent an email out to all city employees the night the City Council voted to terminate former City Manager Michael Penny saying she was ashamed of the Council, the Council’s vote was a result of “massive egos, lack of communication and petty insecurities”, and called the Council “absolutely, certifiably INSANE.”

After Mr. Penny’s departure from the city he and Debbie Brinkman teamed up to form The Institute for Excellence in Governance, which offers “real life tips and tools” to council members on how to “collaborate and function effectively with each.” 

CIRSA shills for Brinkman

The Colorado Intergovernmental Risk Sharing Association (CIRSA) is an organization that provides insurance coverage to government agencies in Colorado without actually being an insurance company. Littleton “purchases” property and liability coverage from CIRSA. If a council member gets sued in his or her official capacity CIRSA decides if they are going to cover that council member’s liability damages.

Shortly after Brinkman’s scathing email to Fey, Carol Fey received an email from CIRSA reminding Fey of its “complimentary liability training” and suggesting Fey contact Brinkman to take advantage of a discounted rate for Brinkman’s classes on how to function effectively with each other.