The recent findings from the Oakland Township Attorneys’ investigation into the forwarding of Privileged and Confidential material by Parks Commissioner Rogers and former trustee Thalmann shed light on some of the proceedings at the January 14, 2015 Parks and Recreation Commission meeting. Commissioners Rogers and Schmidt stormed out of that Commission meeting in protest to Ann Marie being removed from Personnel Committee.
At the January 14th meeting, one of the agenda items was the approval of the Chairman Zale’s recommended committee members. He has the authority to make recommendations, but they must be approved by a majority vote of the Commission.
Chairman Zale recommended that Commissioner Rogers be replaced by Commissioner Perruzi on the Personnel Committee. Former (in office at that time) Trustee Thalmann attempted to influence Mr. Zale. However, Mr. Zale indicated he wanted Mr. Perruzi to be on that committee. Commissioner Rogers objected to the change, and the change was approved in a 5 to 2 vote. Commissioners Rogers and Schmidt were in the minority.
Commissioner Schmidt indicated he did not agree with how the proceedings went, and suggested he would disclose some information that would make visible to the citizens of Oakland Township the reasons for Mr. Zale’s recommendation.
In protest, Commissioners Rogers and Schmidt walked out of the meeting. As they were walking out Mr. Schmidt stated:
“You people are the worst bunch of conniving people that I have ever met in my entire life! “
Earlier he said he wanted to make sure the Commission would be
“accountable for what you have done!”
Here is a video of meeting proceedings as described above:
Mr. Schmidt never did present the material that he alluded to in his comment, but the results of the Township Attorneys’ investigation, specifically Ms. Rogers sharing the November 13, 2015 ‘attorney client’ protected documents, gives a very clear indication of the reasons for Mr. Zale’s recommendation.
Why is this important to the citizens of Oakland Township? Chairman Zale had the authority to make subcommittee appointments. Mr. Zale clearly had reasons for making his recommendations.
Walking out of a meeting in the manner that both Mr. Schmidt and Ms. Rogers did is not only unprofessional, but may have violated their oath of office.
Commissioner Schmidt has aligned himself with Ms. Rogers on many issues. I trust he feels that same way about ‘accountability’ now that Commissioner Rogers’ actions are being investigated by the Oakland County Sheriff’s office.
Oakland Township would be well served if Commissioner Rogers steps down.