by email from Cathy Donohue
In your letter to Mr. Tom Morris, you begin with the following sentence:
"Perhaps you should check that story with the 20 or so others in the meeting, including Councilwoman Robb, that heard our facilitator tell her that she was more than welcome to stay. She was not on the Stakeholder's Committee meeting that was convened by the Mayor to review the permitting process, so KATHY was asked to hold her comments until the public comment meeting, four of which will take place in February, but she was told she was more than welcome to stay at the meeting..."
Although I was not aware of the ground rules for the meeting, when I arrived I was INVITED by other participants to be seated at the table. I was also handed a place card and marking pen by Mr. Collins, the "neutral facilitator". I would have understood the rules if they had been explained in any of your meeting notices or minutes. They were not. I guess that is all part of being "private" and "secret". There is no doubt that I was asked to leave the premises by Mr. Rusty Collins, at the direction of Mr. Fred Weiss.
As the appointed Manager of Parks, you should have been made aware of the astonishing lecture made by Mr. Fred Weiss after I left reminding the members of the committee about the fact that this is a "private" group and its proceedings were confidential. At no time did the "neutral facilitator" hired by the Parks Department, Mr. Collins, say anything except that I should remove myself. He said that if I wished to participate, I could return to the "public meeting" which would be held in February. Ms. Robb had already returned to her chair and was not in the room to hear Mr. Collins remarks.
Councilwman Robb also didn't seem to be aware of the privacy rules, since she brought a guest with her, Denver's premier foot race promoter. His name did not appear on any of the meeting notices. He made as many, if not more, comments and suggestions as I did. He was not asked to leave. In fact, Ms. Dannemiller, no one should need an invitation to attend any city sponsored meeting other than those dealing with personnel or sensitive real estate matters.
The first paragraph of your "explanation" letter is simply fiction. You have participated in and are part of this ongoing insult to my integrity. You have humiliated and defamed me, and you have lied. Of course, it could be that Mr. Weiss actually runs the show and you have no idea what he says or does.
I have witnessed several so-called "Public Meetings" wherein all the decisions regarding our parks have already been made at quiet and largely unpublished "steering committees". The Admission Based Events group comes to mind; but even at those meetings, non-members were not asked to leave. Purely by happenstance, the latest version of these stacked groups employs a new kind of secrecy--one where Mr. Fred Weiss, a senior parks' official, is allowed to order the ejection of a Denver citizen, who just happened to be a retired elected official
What is in order here, Ms. Dannemiller, is nothing short of a very public apology from you and Mr. Weiss on behalf of the Department and the City and a pledge to never have this type of abusive behavior occur to any citizen of Denver again.