After being sworn into her second term on January 2, 2018, each member being sworn in shared a few words. One of the sentiments Councilmember Trout relayed was a hope to see the Council be able to work together. This of course, was a not so subtle nod to the internal strain within the Council seen during the election. Some felt her glance to Mayor Backus when stating that no 2018 priorities had been set for the Council was a further nod to the turmoil of 2017.
Does CM Trout actually want to work together or are her words just lip service?
Actions speak louder than words
Immediately following the swearing in ceremony was the regular city council meeting. One of the first items on the agenda was the selection of the Deputy Mayor. It was during this process that CM Trout first hinted the sentiments she shared earlier that evening may not have been genuine. As Councilmember DaCorsi nominated Councilmember Baggett for Deputy Mayor, CM Trout’s lack of a poker face allowed all to clearly see her displeasure. Through the entire process CM Trout held her eyes on the opposite Councilmembers, a scowl affixed her face. As CM DaCorsi, Holman, Brown and Baggett voted CM Trout shook her head in disapproval.
When the vote of four to three confirmed CM Baggett was the new Deputy Mayor, CM Trout murmured something to Councilmember Peloza with a continued look of annoyance. Neither CM Trout nor CM Wales could be moved to applaud the selection of CM Baggett, though CM Peloza had no issue showing basic decorum.
During Councilmember reports, CM Trout was observed reacting in what one individual described as “huffy” during CM Holman’s report. As he read an eloquent and thought provoking quote by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, CM Trout and CM Wales snickered to each other and gave exasperated looks. While the quote read was directed, it echoed the very thing CM Trout had stated earlier.
CM Tout wasted no time after the meeting was adjourned to address several of her fellow councilmembers in what appeared to be a rather stern manner. The interactions were short and words exchanged few.
On Wednesday January 3rd, CM Trout reiterated this hope in a Facebook comment. In response to a post celebrating the swearing in she commented, “Thank you everyone! Now my four year starts, I just pray that our government body can work together!”
These actions would appear to belay the stated hopes she holds for the Council (and city’s governing body) to work together. But, perception is everything.
We reached out to CM Trout to inquire if she would like to expound on her statements. We also asked if she felt anything seen or perceived at the January 2nd meeting was incorrect. We provided this opportunity for CM Trout to ensure fair reporting on this matter.
We also asked for clarification of her statement regarding the Council’s 2018 priorities; also inquiring if she had any personal priorities she would like to achieve for the city as a Councilmember.
Unfortunately CM Trout chose not to respond. Instead of sending word personally, we received an email from city attorney Dan Heid stating that CM Trout would not be responding. Heid confirmed there was no specific reason the city attorney sent the email instead of CM Trout herself, or the council secretary.
As an elected official, one should be able to stand by their words. They also have to answer questions. We realize that hard questions haven’t always been asked, but that’s why we’re here. We hope that CM Trout does not make a trend out of not answering basic questions.