September 29, 2011 in City

Clark: Chesney neat is just what the city needs

By The Spokesman-Review
 

People are grumbling because Spokane Mayor Mary Verner hired this Arizona guy with a scandalous past to be our new city planning director.

Well, you won’t hear any grousing coming from me.

In fact, I say we give Scott Chesney a big “Welcome to Crazy Town” party the second he sets foot on Lilac City soil.

I’ll bring the helium balloons.

Yeah. Yeah. I’m aware that Chesney misused his city credit card when he was the planning and community development director in Surprise, Ariz.

And, yeah, I also know he resigned amid these difficulties.

But what was Chesney’s crime?

He used his public plastic to buy alcohol for himself and his staff as a reward for all their hard work.

Let me repeat:

He bought booze for his peeps.

Ladies and gentlemen, I believe we have found the man who can turn our City Hall into the well-lubricated, efficient machine I’ve always known it could be.

What were they thinking down in Cactusville?

All those intense solar rays must have dehydrated their brain cells.

You don’t let a guy willing to pay for drinks get away.

Mayor Mary hired Chesney even after he told her about his municipal miscues, and she made the right call.

Verner may be trying to beat the odds and become Spokane’s first two-term mayor since Louis Davenport sold waffles out of a handcart, but even she knows the value of someone who’ll pick up a tab.

Normally when a public official is caught abusing his taxpayer-funded credit card it’s because he used it to settle up with a cross-dressing hooker or to download gay porn.

And that’s just the Republicans.

What Chesney did is biblical – a blessed act of liquid kindness.

Cheers to you, Mary Verner!

I’m actually a bit surprised by her boldness and decisiveness in hiring Chesney. The mayor is usually a lot more wishy-washy when it comes to duties like, say, unleashing the snowplows during a Category 12 blizzard or realizing that our thug cops thumped the life out of an innocent and mentally ill janitor.

No, hiring Chesney wasn’t a mayoral mistake as one of my readers suggested in an email. Verner didn’t “blow the election.”

On the contrary, she’s lucky Washington State University’s fraternity row didn’t grab Chesney first.

Those alcoholic frat boys would love to have a professional planner around to organize the next kegger and pay the beer distributor, to boot.

My friends, there is a lesson here. And that is that the morale of our poor city workers cannot be undervalued.

Earning a paycheck from Spokane can be a real downer.

There’s constant second-guessing from citizens. There’s constant criticism from jerks like me. There’s constant turnover in mayors …

Our civic servants deserve to kick back now and then and get completely Chesney-faced.

I’m hoping our new planner will have a positive influence on Mayor Verner, too.

CHESNEY – “Come on, Mary. You’ve worked really hard to screw over the residents by raising their water rates. Lemme buy you a Spococktail.”

VERNER – “Why, Scott. I do believe you’re right. Bottoms up!”

Spokane is headed for better days with Chesney aboard. Just you wait and see.

So when he finally gets here, make sure you drop by his office and say hi.

Happy hour starts at five.

Doug Clark can be reached at (509) 459-5432 or dougc@ spokesman.com.

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