Friday, May 25, 2018

Godburn Calls for Arts Protest Tuesday

From Lee Godburn, Chair of the Middletown Arts Commission.
Fellow citizens,

I have served on Middletown’s Arts Commission for many years now. Most of you who know me know I strongly involve myself in arts related issues but try to stay away from political ones. I have, through my own discovery and that of other Commissioners thoroughly listened to all sides of this debate. Explored all options, weighed all valid points and collectively have come up with the conclusion that the loss, even temporarily, of the arts coordinator’s position would be not only a backward step for the city of Middletown, but a disastrous blow to the community in a multitude of areas for years to come. Anyone who does not see the drastic effect that this will cause has no business governing an “arts city”.

The only lucid move to end all the current and future turmoil associated with this veto is to have the council vote not to override it and agree to equitably handle some current points of contention. This answer of course is based on what would be the best course of action for the people, and not what would best satisfy the personal agendas of certain individuals. Therefore, I’d like to ask all concerned individuals and arts advocates to join us in a united front to save this position and thus the quality of life you’ve come to expect in this city.

 I have great respect for our Councilmen, their tireless efforts, long hours and devoted service to making Middletown the best place it can be. No one can be expected to have all the right answers though which is why the community must show them HOW IMPORTANT the ARTS are to us!

We will be assembling at City Hall on Tuesday May 29th @ 6pm for a peaceful protest prior to the common council’s meeting when they will vote yes or no on the veto. It will be your chance to see how each council person views the importance of the arts in Middletown. It will be your last chance to keep Middletown moving forward in its politics and the arts. The media will be present. We have two themes of attire for those inclined to join in. One is any type of artful or performance related wear meant to signify support of the arts. The other is mops, brooms, cleaning attire meant to signify it’s time to clean the house of those in power who don’t see the importance of our city’s arts. Signs are always welcome as well. Please come and show your support it’s the only way to make a difference and keep the City we love growing!

Lee Godburn


Anonymous said...

The meeting to override the mayor's veto is Tuesday, May 29th. Please see Mayor Dan Drew's Facebook page.

Anonymous said...

For those of us not in the know, can someone explain " best satisfy the personal agendas of certain individuals."?

Biff Shaw said...

It's times ike these that I wish I were still in Middletown. The city has been a light post in the world of arts and arts appreciation and has gone miles to make art as important as the other interests and disciplines. It is a giant step backward to eliminate this critical position and the work that goes with it. Don't let it happen.

Anonymous said...

Heard the position was reviewed, and can be put back in at a later date .The duties used to include overseeing the senior center & salary was never brought down. The only way to review is to eliminate from the budget then reinstate at a salary lower then the highest step at $85k, with defunct duties eliminated. This is part for the course when someone retires that the position is reviewed. The arts director is important no one desputes that. Facts needs to reflect the intent. The Weights & Measures Director position was reviewed when it's director retired. This is normal course.

stephan allison said...

While the determination has been made after a spirited display of public outcry, I can not let pass a comment that is false continue to be left uncorrected.
To anonymous 5/26 at 3:51p I submit that the salary was indeed brought down! As the individual in question, I can attest to a sudden and significant drop in my salary when the acting position was removed from my duties. While I won't call you a liar, you veer very close to that name by spreading misinformation without checking the facts. Maybe that's why you post anonymously?
Stephan Allison, Arts & Culture Coordinator for the City of Middletown