On Wednesday, September 18th, I accepted an invitation to debate Mr. Clayton Floyd, the opposing candidate in the Mayor’s race. I was pleased that the Bitterroot Star had organized this event for the benefit of the voters of Stevensville.
As the debate was about to begin, Mr. Floyd laid out his new brochure in support of his candidacy. In his brochure he makes a direct attack on a decision by the Council that involved a matter of my wife’s health. He asserts that a decision to move temporarily to a home adjacent to the Town while Robbie recovered from double hip replacement surgery was against state law. He makes this accusation knowing full well (because he attended the meeting) that this decision was made with the unanimous consent of the Council and with the support of the Town Attorney, Mr. Brian West, who cited case law and state statute directly supporting the Council approval.
Mr. Floyd suggests that I had to “choose” to either care for my wife or continue to lead as Mayor. I was most grateful that the Council and the Town Attorney found that state law allowed for a compassionate solution. I could temporarily relocate as long as I returned to our residence in town as soon as the doctors released Robbie to full mobility. During this time I continued to serve the citizens of Stevensville every day as Mayor. We returned to our residence on August 26, 2013. My family and I are eternally grateful for the support of the Council and of the residents of Stevensville.
Mr. Floyd’s assertion violates the accepted practice during a campaign to not involve a person’s family who has no direct involvement in the campaign or the issues. This is NOT “just politics.” It is reprehensible behavior.
Question my achievements, policies, leadership style or my vision for the future of Stevensville. Fair enough. Questioning a legal decision by the Town Council involving my family’s health issue is just unacceptable.
Gene Mim Mack, Mayor