During my weekly coverage of Flagstaff City Council meetings I was surprised to see posts from Mayor Coral Evans showing up next to mine while the meeting was in session. I have covered a lot of council meetings over the years and have never seen a sitting Mayor posting while running the meeting.
The following day I went on the Jeff Oravits Show
and brought up the idea that posting on social media during a council presentation could be considered disrespectful to City staff. Oravits was hesitant to criticize and suggested that often council has heard the same presentation multiple times and presentations can be long and boring. I conceded that he may be right and we moved on to other topics.
According to the paper, Mayor Evans had this to say,
“Social media postings during city council meetings were either the result of posts that were scheduled ahead of time, or were posted by other members of her team, Flagstaff Mayor Coral Evans said after receiving some animosity about the timing of her posts.”
Alright, that’s cool, most social media does allow posts to be scheduled and I don’t think anybody knows how big “Team Coral” is and it is possible that multiple people could have access to her account. Still, since we were talking about specific posts at specific times, shouldn’t she be able to specifically say if the posts in question were scheduled or posted by others? Does she really not know which?
This reminds me of a previous issues the Mayor has had to answer to where she gave multiple responses to the same question. When challenged on alleged illegal campaign contributions, Evans Campaign told the Daily Sun
that the contributions were among “hundreds” received during her kick off event party. A look at campaign finance reports does not show hundreds of donations received that night. In her formal reply to Arizona Secretary of State, Evans said accepting the illegal contributions was simply a mistake by a campaign staffer.
At the end of the day, whether Evans posted to social media or not during a council meeting can seem quite trivial to just about everybody, except maybe staff members giving the presentations. But based off her response to the issue, all the social media activity and front page story on this issue, the Mayor and many others seem to think that the accusations are a big deal. Regardless of if it was Mayor Evans herself posting, a staff member, or a scheduled post, “methinks the lady doth protest too much” seems to be the phrase that fits the bill.
Elisha Dorfsmith is a regular contributor to the Jeff Oravits Show, small business owner and founder of the Flagstaff Liberty Alliance.
If you have a listener opinion, email it to email@example.com and it may be posted online and may even be read on air on the Jeff Oravits Show.
The Jeff Oravits Show is live at 3PM, Monday-Friday on 97.1FM and available online.