Show members the door

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You would hope that in a city where elected officials are maintaining a new, higher standard for getting along, some of that goodwill might trickle down to the lone holdouts at the Augusta-Richmond County Coliseum Authority.

No such luck. It's almost as if the authority actively seeks new, head-shaking ways to throw open its utter dysfunction for public display.

In the past week alone, authority members Richard Isdell and Willie Law almost came to blows as they traded shouts of profanity after one meeting.

And Tuesday -- after authority Chairman Keith Brown unilaterally decided to cancel that day's scheduled meeting -- several members showed up anyway, and the topic of conversation drifted to their unhappiness with Brown.

At least two members say that Brown tried to cancel the meeting -- contrary to his powers under authority bylaws -- to avoid an agenda item to discuss the rehiring of Facilities Manager Julie Huggins. She, you may remember, spent all of one week on the job earlier this year. Some observers still see her firing as petty, eye-for-an-eye retribution for the March firing of Robert "Flash" Gordon as the civic center's manager.

Tuesday's Coliseum Authority imbroglio wound down as Brown resigned as chairman -- even before he had a chance to preside over one full meeting of the board.

It's all so maddening. The members who add more function than dysfunction to the authority can't keep the entire board focused and effective. Then there's the authority's protracted dithering over its budget. There's the January members' walkout in the wake of the sudden firings of the authority's attorney and accountant.

Even the board's officer elections aren't without drama. Last month, five members tossed around the nomination for treasurer like a ticking bomb before the job went to absent member Adrian Arnold.

Amid all this, the entertainment offerings of the civic center itself still are too often unworthy in stature for Georgia's second-largest city. And when Augusta can draw acts with serious name recognition -- Aaron Tippin, Blood, Sweat and Tears or Souljah Boy, to name a few -- the audiences end up being so small through ineffective promotion that the authority loses tens of thousands of dollars on shows. In the case of Souljah Boy, advance ticket sales were so paltry that the hip-hop sensation outright canceled his Augusta appearance earlier this month.

The Coliseum Authority is scheduled to meet today at 9 a.m., and if it has any concern about a brighter future for the civic center, every member should resign.

In its place, nominators should find 12 members who are cut from the same timber as members of, say, the Augusta Commission of the Richmond County Board of Education -- elected bodies composed of people who are willing to work together and move forward.

These new members should meet specific criteria that justify their placement on the authority. They should be competent, consensus-building business people, not unqualified recipients of political largesse.

And why not introduce an orientation program for new members? The board has no program resembling that now, and that's another part of the problem.

Today's Coliseum Authority meeting should be the jumping-off point to start fixing the board's problems and the low community morale that accompanies them -- a time for less bickering and more solutions.

Comments (54) Add comment
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karmakills123
8
Points
karmakills123 05/29/08 - 02:57 am
0
0
You ever see that commercial

You ever see that commercial where the chimpanzees are running the business?............

JimCox
7
Points
JimCox 05/29/08 - 03:56 am
0
0
Whys is it that so many

Whys is it that so many elected and appointed officials in Augusta think that they can make up the rules as they go?

JohnQPublic
5
Points
JohnQPublic 05/29/08 - 04:45 am
0
0
Wipe the slate clean, fire

Wipe the slate clean, fire the whole board and hire some professionals to conduct city business!

patriciathomas
42
Points
patriciathomas 05/29/08 - 05:24 am
0
0
Get the state government out

Get the state government out of the business, get the county government out of the business and let competent people run the coliseum. Or, quit reporting on this stupid situation and just let the stupid people continue to run their stupid business in their own stupid way.

christian134
1
Points
christian134 05/29/08 - 05:52 am
0
0
My thoughts on this whole

My thoughts on this whole idiotic mess is to shut the whole center down until the "children", actually calling them children is an insult to the children- settle down and begin to play nice....These people give "mature" adult thinking and actions a whole new meaning...

shivas
2
Points
shivas 05/29/08 - 06:19 am
0
0
Pass the popcorn.

Pass the popcorn.

mayhem1999
0
Points
mayhem1999 05/29/08 - 06:26 am
0
0
Get rid of them all and hire

Get rid of them all and hire a competent management co. Let the city administrator do his job and oversee the management co. JEEZ!

ITDoc
1
Points
ITDoc 05/29/08 - 06:40 am
0
0
RC mantra: If we build it,

RC mantra: If we build it, we'll mismanage it.

Little Lamb
49245
Points
Little Lamb 05/29/08 - 07:00 am
0
0
What the editorial did not

What the editorial did not say was this: Keith Brown has "resigned" the chairmanship, but has he put it in writing yet? The Authority board will need to take up as a matter of Authority business a motion either to accept or reject his resignation, if indeed he bothers to submit a written resignation. Until he does, Brown is still the elected chairman. As such, Brown has no vote except to break ties. My questions are, who will gavel today's meeting to order? Who will make the motion to accept or reject the resignation?

Little Lamb
49245
Points
Little Lamb 05/29/08 - 07:02 am
0
0
If Keith Brown behaves at

If Keith Brown behaves at today's meeting like he has behaved in the past at public meetings, i.e., like a spoiled brat, he will likely refuse to chair the meeting. And he will also insist on voting. Hopefully, Authority attorney Ed Enoch will advise the members that there are rules of order for a public meeting, and that they would do well to follow proper procedure. The best outcome is to keep Brown on as chairman so that he does not have a vote.

Little Lamb
49245
Points
Little Lamb 05/29/08 - 07:05 am
0
0
Michael Ryan must have been

Michael Ryan must have been writing this editorial just before he left the office yesterday, and his wife must have been nagging him to get home quickly. How else to explain this statement: "In its place, nominators should find 12 members who are cut from the same timber as members of, say, the Augusta Commission of the Richmond County Board of Education -- elected bodies composed of people who are willing to work together and move forward." That sentence is crazy talk!

imdstuf
10
Points
imdstuf 05/29/08 - 07:16 am
0
0
This is the song that never

This is the song that never ends, yes it goes on and on my friends...

getalife
4
Points
getalife 05/29/08 - 07:30 am
0
0
The paper's editorial staff

The paper's editorial staff that wrote this article must have forgotten about the antics of the school board members, Joe Scott and Venus Cain. I think the county should sell the coliseum to a private professional business and reap the tax benefits. Regardless of how you try to appoint people to the coliseum board, you will never get a group that can work together and agree on anything. Richmond County needs to get out of the entertainment business!!

pofwe
5
Points
pofwe 05/29/08 - 07:44 am
0
0
Satiriclly speaking ... when

Satiriclly speaking ... when are we gonna learn that the races can't get along & establish a black, white, red, & yellow form of Qasi-governments to make everybody "proud to be an American?" HUH?

thistownisunbelievable
1
Points
thistownisunbelievable 05/29/08 - 08:08 am
0
0
It is funny that the most

It is funny that the most entertaining thing to happen involving the Civic Center in the last few years is the Colisuem Authority's goofy way of doing business. It really is like a bad reality tv show.

No_Longer_Amazed
5146
Points
No_Longer_Amazed 05/29/08 - 08:52 am
0
0
Sounds like there has been a

Sounds like there has been a major physical confrontation at this morning's Colliseum Authority meeting. The details should be interesting!

Johnny Chimpo
0
Points
Johnny Chimpo 05/29/08 - 08:54 am
0
0
they seriously need to just

they seriously need to just tear that whole place down. only good thing that ever came out of that arena was Marvin Stone, the Colts franchise player.

Little Lamb
49245
Points
Little Lamb 05/29/08 - 09:00 am
0
0
I think Bob Dylan played

I think Bob Dylan played there once.

christian134
1
Points
christian134 05/29/08 - 09:31 am
0
0
The "children" were not

The "children" were not playing nice this morning....We need to send them all home with slips telling them they are never to return.....

sanders20
0
Points
sanders20 05/29/08 - 09:34 am
0
0
"BREAKING NEWS" fight breaks

"BREAKING NEWS" fight breaks out.....who the hell voted for these fools?

sjgraci
2
Points
sjgraci 05/29/08 - 09:46 am
0
0
It looks like one of the

It looks like one of the "Authority" members will be shown the jail cell door.

Little Lamb
49245
Points
Little Lamb 05/29/08 - 10:02 am
0
0
Michael Ryan asks, "And why

Michael Ryan asks, "And why not introduce an orientation program for new members?" Little Lamb asks, "Why not hire Marion Williams to create and present the orientation program to the new members?"

junebug
0
Points
junebug 05/29/08 - 10:44 am
0
0
Great stunt. Now sell tickets

Great stunt. Now sell tickets for a rematch in the main building.
I'd bet on Fennoy to TKO Merry by the second round.

reddog
2
Points
reddog 05/29/08 - 11:00 am
0
0
Who is that fat White guy

Who is that fat White guy that is always sleeping at the commissioner's meetings?

owensjef2
0
Points
owensjef2 05/29/08 - 11:53 am
0
0
Woody! Woody! Woody! You got

Woody! Woody! Woody! You got knocked the %&%^ out , wake up

heehehhehehe

TheTruth
1
Points
TheTruth 05/29/08 - 12:03 pm
0
0
Boondoggle: a government or

Boondoggle: a government or corporate project involving large numbers of people and usually, heavy expenditure, where at some point the key operators have realized that the project is never going to work, but are reluctant to bring this to the attention of their superiors. We the tax payers need to insist that the fate of the authority be put in the voters hands. I say end it. Hire ONE person to run the COMPANY and treat it like a BUSINESS. The only way to move forward is to remove the politics.

mable8
2
Points
mable8 05/29/08 - 12:12 pm
0
0
okay, augusta-richomond

okay, augusta-richomond county citizens, stand up and recall these idiots; it's time to demand a special election because these so-called commissioners cannot run the county as they were elected to do. they nothing more than a bunch of overgrown juvenile delinquents in office.

AugustaResident
0
Points
AugustaResident 05/29/08 - 12:47 pm
0
0
they are appointed not

they are appointed not elected. otherwise i'd have passed the signature list around a long time ago.

Farful
7
Points
Farful 05/29/08 - 12:49 pm
0
0
I say this without regard to

I say this without regard to race, creed or color because I do not know which of the above these morons happen to be: YOU CAN TAKE THEM OUT OF THE TREES.........

Newsreader
11
Points
Newsreader 05/29/08 - 01:20 pm
0
0
The proper course of action

The proper course of action is to disband the Coliseum Authority and turn the arenas over to an existing department within Augusta Richmond County government. What do we need with the Authority? We could eliminate a lot of waste and overhead at the venues. Acts will come, but poor management will always cost us money.

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