Aug
15

King Moffitt’s Coronation

By

“…local governments exist by legislative benevolence,” – Rep. Tim Moffitt, quoting from a School of Govt. paper at his website

“Don’t you know who I am? I want speed bumps!” – Rep. Tim Moffitt

When Representative Tim Moffitt started his habit of forcing his desires down the throats of Buncombe County residents, the local media was quick to respond. Here’s a little trip down memory lane.

John Boyle:

I suspect she and many others are frustrated with Moffitt because his approach runs contrary to all three principles she touched on. Clearly, he favors governmental opaqueness, exclusion and ruling by fiat.”
[...]
It’s a slap in the face. Forget about partisan politics. What ever happened to plain old common decency and professional courtesy?

Consensus building? Listening to the will of the people?

Out the window.
[...]
It’s like Moffitt thinks he was elected king.


The Editorial Board of the Asheville Citizen-Times:

Voters sent Republicans to Raleigh in control of the General Assembly for the first time in a century to find solutions to a serious shortfall in a state budget, but we’ve not heard during or after the campaign any great public outcries to micromanage local government as well. If he wanted to change local governance, perhaps Moffitt should have run for Asheville City Council or Buncombe County commissioner.

Mtn Xpress:

Republican state Rep. Tim Moffitt has filed legislation that would seize Asheville’s water system, turning control over to the Metropolitan Sewerage District. Asheville City Council member Bill Russell, who also sits on the MSD board, said Moffitt didn’t inform either body before proposing the legislation.

And here’s David Cohen to round it out:


Comments

  1. Tim Peck says:

    Qualifies as “good faith negotiations” to me. Good work, councilman.

    Meantime, here’s a little primer on how the Democrat Party set up state and local government: http://nc116.com/?p=1031

    ?”if the vote was ‘no,’ the system could not be sold or leased.”

    That’s true. It could not be sold or leased BY THE CITY!

    (Could it be seized? I thought this was a seizure.)

    The statute cited (N.C.G.S. 160A-321) addresses the “sale, lease or discontinuance” of a utility that is initiated by the city. The legislation under consideration is a “transfer” of a utility that is initiated by the General Assembly. There is no home rule in NC and the GA is not asking permission to do something that is already within their authority. So, good luck with that.

    Also, the City of Asheville does not own the water system.

    http://www.ncleg.net/documentsites/committees/MetSewWatSysLRC/Report/2012-LRC%20Municipal%20Sewerage%20DRAFT%20REPORT.pdf

    City council is proposing a referendum for the citizens to vote on whether or not the city should sell or lease something that does not not belong to them. Brilliant.

    “…committee also stated it wouldn’t pass any legislation forcing the transfer if the city and MSD were engaged in ‘good faith’ negotiations.”

    I guess we’re passed all that now.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 4

  2. Robert Danos says:

    ““…local governments exist by legislative benevolence,” – Rep. Tim Moffitt”

    That quote (and the entire page it is lifted from) is from the UNC School of Government document “County and Municipal Government”, http://sogpubs.unc.edu/cmg/cmg04.pdf, as noted at the bottom of the page on Rep. Moffitt’s website you linked to: http://nc116.com/?p=1031

    Putting “- Rep. Tim Moffitt” at the end of the quote of the Professor’s very benign article on how NC govt works would get you graded down if this were a term paper.

    Is your “editing” and leaving out who wrote it and what their actual intent was an accident or intellectual dishonesty?

    Thumb up 5

  3. Jason Bugg says:

    I miss the good ol’ days when Mumpower and Nesbitt were this site’s boogeymen.

    Thumb up 7

  4. Gordon Smith says:

    Robert,

    It was an oversight, and I’ve corrected the line to reflect that the quote is simply a citation in support of Rep. Moffitt’s position.

    Thumb up 4

  5. Gordon Smith says:

    Mr. Peck,

    We’re absolutely working in good faith with MSD, other municipalities, and the citizens of Asheville in meeting the expectations of the study committee. That was our charge, and we are faithfully executing it, though the legislators’ dictum was not delivered in a good faith manner.

    Supporting Rep. Moffitt’s style of governance was not among the terms of the Study Committee’s report.

    Thumb up 8

  6. Robert Danos says:

    @ Gordon

    Thank you. I know you play hard but fair!

    @ Jason Bugg

    I don’t visit to be a boogeyman. I often simply read and move on, then every so often decide to engage in what is more often than not some intersted debate and/or dialogue. I particularly enjoyed the folks who in good civil fun discussed Ryan/Rand/St. Aguinas in the Interesting Reading thread below.

    I find it healthy and enjoyable to dip in to a site where I know I probably am one of the .1% that is a conservative Catholic Republican who enjoys a good bout without having to get nasty.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 3

  7. Parker says:

    Wow. I guess his cantankerous statements on “legislative benevolence” simply allowing local governments to exist, just solidifies Moffitt’s (and his allies) views that are contradictory to his own party’s legacy. A legacy that advocates for more local control and less government intervention by any level of government.

    But I guess when you use vengeance as a tool to make policy (or steal public infrastructure) principles go out the window.

    Thumb up 7

  8. TJ says:

    “Supporting Rep. Moffitt’s style of governance was not among the terms of the Study Committee’s report.”

    You’re going to eat that okra, and you’re going to LIKE it, if I have to make you!”
    -mom convincing child to eat the food they hate

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  9. shadmarsh says:

    It should be noted that Rep. Moffitt (or whomever is running his site/FB) “highlighted” the above quote on both his Facebook page and his personal website.

    link: http://nc116.com/?p=1031
    link: http://yfrog.com/kkyg3fsj

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 4

  10. Lindsey Simerly says:

    NC Policy Watch asks “Is state lawmaker sending a threat to the city of Asheville?”
    http://pulse.ncpolicywatch.org/2012/08/15/is-state-lawmaker-sending-a-threat-to-the-city-of-asheville/

    Citing this:
    “If it wishes to abolish a local government, or to merge it with another, or to impose particular obligations on it, it has almost unlimited power to do as it chooses”

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 3

  11. Steve Harrison says:

    “Is your “editing” and leaving out who wrote it and what their actual intent was an accident or intellectual dishonesty?”

    Robert, if there was any “intellectual dishonesty” it was Moffitt himself who engaged in it. He should have given attribution to the author at the top of the post, in addition to adding the link at the bottom.

    That said, it was probably an accident on his part (as opposed to dishonesty). Most people who are new to blogging/website content are not familiar with copyright issues. As an administrator, I have to “fix” diaries from time to time, and most of them are not intentionally misleading.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 3

  12. Robert Danos says:

    “Wow. I guess his cantankerous statements on “legislative benevolence” simply allowing local governments to exist, just solidifies Moffitt’s (and his allies) views that are contradictory to his own party’s legacy. A legacy that advocates for more local control and less government intervention by any level of government.”

    They aren’t our “views” or “legacy” – it is the NC Constitution – a legacy written by the Democratic party to make NC one of many states with a top down, rather than “home rule” style of state govt.

    I’d like to see that changed, but to say that Moffitt or anyone else in the GOP created the Constitional reality we exist under is baseless nonsense.

    As to Moffitt making any statements on “legislative benevolence” – he didn’t. See above.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 5

  13. Wiley says:

    Looking at nc116.com, this report cited from the Chapel Hill School of Government was written in 2007. That was three full years before Representative Moffitt was even elected. And after 140 years of Democratic rule in the State of North Carolina.

    This would seem to dispel any claims this came from Moffitt or the Republicans. It came from the UNC-Chapel Hill School of Government, also creature of the North Carolina General Assembly.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 3

  14. shadmarsh says:

    It’s not the source of the quote that is at issue (unless of course you’re trying to avoid the actual issue). It’s that he whipped it out to stick in the faces of Asheville as some sort of (seeming) threat, an attempt to put us little people back in our rightful place.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 5

  15. Ascend of Asheville says:

    I really don’t think who came up with the design is the issue. The issue is how it is being used as a blunt instrument of governmental overreach and a thinly veiled threat. Maybe the framers of the state constitution envisioned it this way, maybe not, but in my opinion it is wrong, and Moffitt is showing himself to be quite capable of living up to the cartoon portrayals of him as would-be King.

    I think the city council should get together this very evening in emergency session and rename the city for a day in protest. I suggest Moffittville.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 4

  16. Dixiegirlz says:

    Or “Stopitmoffittville” :-/

    Thumb up 5

  17. Dixiegirlz says:

    Actually,yesterday I spent the evening with a Republican friend. She is very uncomfortable with Mr. Moffitt’s seeming attacks. But then she is a moderate Republican.

    Thumb up 6

  18. TJ says:

    Last night, at city council, Victor O. gave an eloquent reading to an ordinance drafted by attorneys whom addressed the whole water issue from another framework. It’d be great, Jeff, if you got him on your show and spoke about it. He has a great projected voice, and is very committed to this issue and is trying to work on a thoughtful presentation council could actually consider adopting – binding or not.

    We will be working on getting signatures to try and support a referendum, but, it will be tight scheduling.

    I hope he shares more of it soon. Very impressive composition.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2

  19. tatuaje says:

    Which one of you jokers made this?

    http://iamnc116.com/2012/08/15/how-government-works/

    Thumb up 5

  20. Tim Peck says:

    The entire text of Rep. Moffitt’s weblog post on local government is a series of quotes from the book “County and Municipal Government in North Carolina” edited by David Lawrence of UNC School of Government which is a “complete reference book on North Carolina county and municipal government that provides a comprehensive treatment of the legal foundations, organization, and the administration of the state’s counties and cities.”

    These are all quotes that I found in my research on the subject and posted separately on Twitter at https://twitter.com/timothypeck. They were then compiled by the weblog administrator at Rep. Moffitt’s website and formatted for a post. Good work.

    The quotes are from the chapters “Article 1: An Overview of Local Government” and “Article 4: The Police Power” by A. Fleming Bell. The book is simply an analysis of the history and current state of the actual law. Pretty basic stuff, really. Get over it.

    Moffitt’s weblog post
    http://nc116.com/?p=1031

    County and Municipal Government in North Carolina
    http://www.sog.unc.edu/node/2248

    An Overview of Local Government
    http://sogpubs.unc.edu/cmg/cmg01.pdf

    The Police Power
    http://sogpubs.unc.edu/cmg/cmg04.pdf

    A. Fleming Bell
    http://www.sog.unc.edu/user/22
    …………………………………

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 1

  21. Ascend of Asheville says:

    @Tatuaje,
    Where did you find that? What a hoot!

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2

  22. TJ says:

    Tim…not so impressive. Just more ideologue-speak. No different than a self-promotional poliitical ad.

    I find Tatuaje’s version MUCH more interesting. Too bad Moffitt can’t have that humor on his site. Might make him more likeable and intersting.

    So far, he just comes across as the greedy, self-centered and socially backward man that has sociopathic traits with a bit of southern “charm” that leads people to think he’s “nice.”

    I still think of the grinch every time I see his picture, and, speaking with him, I was not very impressed.

    I think he would make a VERY interesting study in psychopathology.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 1

  23. Wow. Tim has a fairly intimate knowledge of the sources of material for nc116.com

    Hmm.

    Say, Tim, are you Tim Moffitt’s “Communications Office”?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 1

  24. Dixiegirlz says:

    If anyone remembers the unique roadside monument of sorts on the Tennessee side of 19/23 that says “State of Franklin”… Well, far west parts WNC became the State of Franklin. So if it’s been done before, they may do it again.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 0

  25. Tim Peck says:

    “Say, Tim, are you Tim Moffitt’s ‘Communications Office’?”

    ADHD much?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2

  26. Tim Peck says:

    Did you know that 60% of the ratepayers, who actually own the water system, live outside Asheville city limits?

    Will the referendum (read: public survey) disenfranchise 40% of system owners?
    …………………………………………….

    Thumb up 3

  27. That’s a non-denial denial, sir.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 3

  28. shadmarsh says:

    Also, it’s an argumentum ad hominem.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 1

  29. Gordon Smith says:

    I can’t help but notice that Tim and MM are tossing around the same stats on the same day at the same time. It’s almost like they’re working on the same project and trying to change the subject of the conversation from Rep. Moffitt’s actions to a historical debate over water system ownership. Twofold tactic – shift focus away from the candidate’s unilateral actions that have been roundly condemned AND make the candidate’s argument that Asheville doesn’t deserve one red cent for its assets.

    Hard to say for sure, but it sure looks funny!

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 4

  30. Ascend of Asheville says:

    I wonder if the one is happy doing for free what the other is getting paid for?

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2

  31. I bet he’s getting paid, too. In fact, I suspect he’s the webmaster of nc116.com – he certainly didn’t deny it.

    I guess all this time I thought he didn’t know what “ad hominem” meant, I was wrong. He used it perfectly.

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2

  32. Tim Peck says:

    “It’s almost like…”

    Yeah, it almost is, isn’t it? Does it really matter? You can just speculate in public and declare anything so and the peanut gallery will guffaw without thinking and make funny comments.

    Glad to entertain.
    ……………………………….

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2

  33. Tim Peck says:

    [correction]
    …………………………………………….

    Did you know that 60% of the ratepayers, who actually own the water system, live outside Asheville city limits?

    Will the referendum (or public survey) disenfranchise them?
    …………………………………………….

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2

  34. tim says:

    “…how the Democrat Party…”

    Is there anyone out there who pays the slightest bit of attention to anyone who says “democrat party?”

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 3

  35. shadmarsh says:

    Just an FYI, any comment with 4 or more links goes directly into the moderation queue.

    Please continue!

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 1

  36. Dixiegirlz says:

    ” It’s almost like they’re working on the same project and trying to change the subject of the conversation from Rep. Moffitt’s actions to a historical debate over water system ownership”

    Almost like partisan ” talking points.”

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 3

  37. Ascend of Asheville says:

    Tim, are you counting meters or actual users? I’m hearing much different numbers than you are using.

    http://www.ncleg.net/documentsites/committees/MetSewWatSysLRC/Meetings/1%20-%20January%2023,%202012/Handouts%20and%20Presentations/2012-0123%20S.Shoaf-Asheville-Water-Resources-Presentation.pdf

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 1

  38. TJ says:

    “Yeah, it almost is, isn’t it? Does it really matter? You can just speculate in public and declare anything so and the peanut gallery will guffaw without thinking and make funny comments.

    Glad to entertain”

    Well, Tim, I obviously don’t “know” you, other than what I observe here. But, honestly, the last part of your comment is the most believable of what I usually read from you. On occasion I support a comment you make. Overall, however, you really DO come across as throwing in comments or responding in hopes of a receprocation, no matter how negative. like the “ADHD much?” comment. Wasn’t funny, didn’t really get it, but, it sure sounds provocative. A one-upmanship sort of thing. But, really it becomes more of a “down”manship sort of thing.

    As to the “peanut gallery?” There may be someone here whom wholeheartedly agrees with and has mindmelds with Gordon…but, I have yet to spot that. Sure, folks agree often. If they never did and they hated him, I would imagine they would go elsewhere (sort of like the ones I encountered when I first came here who insisted Gordon was gay and a liar and ….:::whatever:::
    Disagreement doesn’t mean disliking or despising (or, perhaps, you think it does – or, should?).

    It just means this blog is not the borg.

    Isn’t that provocation what they call “trolling?” But, really, I’m not on the ‘net all day, so, I could be making an incorrect reference.

    “Almost like partisan ” talking points.””

    Davyne – I would say EXACTLY like that.

    But, Gordon paid me to say that. In peanuts. ;-) j/k

    Rate this comment: Thumb up 2