Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Memphis City Council Members Behaving Badly ...

Who Could Have Predicted That?

Posted By on Tue, Jun 5, 2007 at 4:00 AM

City Councilman Joe Brown called colleague Myron Lowery "retarded" Tuesday in a committee meeting, prompting council Chairman Tom Marshall to issue a memo reminding members to behave themselves.

According to other council members in the meeting, Brown said "you’re retarded" to Lowery during a meeting of the Personnel Committee. Several members and guests were in the room at the time. Lowery kept his cool and did not respond in kind, said councilman Jack Sammons, who was there.

Recent council meetings have been marked by increasingly personal and angry exchanges between members, with Councilman Edmund Ford and Marshall nearly coming to blows after one exchange.

Marshall's memo urged members to remember the Rules of Procedure which states in part: "conduct of individual members during meetings of the council is expected to reflect a total sense of respect for the office held by those assembled to conduct business."

Marshall said "name calling and cross talk do not dignify this office" and requested that committee chairmen not tolerate it.

The council was scheduled to consider an ethics ordinance and the capital improvements budget Tuesday afternoon, the first general meeting following the resignation of Councilman Rickey Peete who is under federal indictment. — John Branston

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