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A huge thank you to the 12 members of BOMA for passing the 2nd reading of the budget.

I took the time to watch the four-hour virtual online meeting (and painfully so), the absolute madness that occurred when our mayor, at the last minute, proposed $894,000 in cuts without speaking to even one single dept head in advance.

The fire department cuts in fact would have literally put our city and residents at risk. What reasonable mayor does something like this? Sixty-two percent of his proposed cuts were to our fire department.

Thirty-five percent more cuts were to our parks department. Many of his proposed cuts were to programs the city is already legally obligated to. So, what was the real purpose of his grand standing, and adversarial approach?

The only person who can completely answer that is Mayor Clary himself, but to me it was akin to political vandalism - someone throwing a hand grenade or stink bomb into a room, in this case, a Zoom meeting of 20 people.

I hope and pray, come this fall, Hendersonville will get back to conducting city business in a professional, respectful and business-like manner with a new mayor. Kudos to all of the aldermen, department heads, and our interim city administrator who showed amazing patience and restraint in seeing this budget process through.

We appreciate you all, and it's beyond evident via the recent multiple 12-1 votes, you all have come together for the good of the people of Hendersonville. Just my personal opinion, but I believe it would be well worth Mayor Clary to consider resigning his position since he's more interested in conducting bizarre political stunts, blocking members of BOMA from his social media sites and making totally unrealistic demands on the very process he's to oversee.

I've always thought a mayor was to provide leadership, not divide and to find ways to bring people together for the good of a city. Mayor Clary has severely alienated the very people he was elected to work with. Consequently, he has lost the respect of his peers on BOMA, rendering him ineffective in his duties going forward. In closing, this drama has been going on for far too long. Hendersonville deserves better.

Robert Johnson,


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