and with no notice to constituents so that they could go see his press conference at, apparently, the Glen Rose Medical Center. The Glen Rose Reporter of August 19, 2009 says, after discussing that town hall tele-meeting that is supposed to happen tonight at 6:30 pm, that
Edwards' meetings with local health care providers began in Glen Rose on Monday. "Our toal ws not to come to one conclusion but to share ideas and concerns", Edwards said.
The overwhelming majority of attendees wanted to know if the cost savings in the bill were legitimate or if the savings would ultimately result in a cut of services.
Let's just stop right here. Edwards was in town? He doesn't hold town hall meetings here but he came to meet with a group of hand-picked constituents at the hospital? How does anyone know of this, particularly when the newspaper comes out on Wednesday? IN other words, suppose that the reporters at both newspapers were sent a notice of a press conference, on, say, a Friday, to be held the following Monday. Even if they wanted to, there is no time to get that put in the newspaper for anyone that lives here to see and attend. And, of course, it would be a public meeting, right? But not well-attended if few people even know it's occurring.
I called up the DC office to ask if there was a way for citizens to know when Edwards is coming to town, ie, schedule, rather than hearing about his having been here AFTER the event. Apparently Josh Taylor does the press stuff and I was told that if I went on Chet Edwards website and sign up for the press notices, I will get emailed too. But I'd like to verify that is true, with Josh Taylor-that it's not just getting releases AFTER the fact but notifications before. ANYONE should be able to sign up for what Chet Edwards is doing and where he is appearning BEFORE IT HAPPENS. I also called the Cleburne (Johnson County) office and was again told that they don't know what his schedule is, and you can't find out on the website. You know, that just is not good enough. Chet Edwards works for YOU AND ME and his schedule, so far as its possible for all to know beforehand, should be an open book.
Back to whatever this was on Monday. Did the county judge attend? Did the commissioners? Was this a meeting that should have been announced 72 hours in advance as an open meeting? Was it on the courthouse bulletin board? If they didn't attend, who did? I was told that, at least at the press conference, ONLY the two reporters and Chet Edwards were there; no hospital employees either. Was there yet ANOTHER meeting besides the one with the reporters and Chet? Maybe with Gary Marks? Who were the "overwhelming majority of attendees?". How many people? And how were they notified? Wo, were there actually TWO meetings, one private with hospital people, and one not publicized with the reporters?
You can tell that I continue not to be happy about this. If Chet Edwards can find time to come to Somervell County to meet privately with the hospital staff and possibly the commissioners, etc (not sure about that.. yet) and also to have a press conference, he has time to have a TOWN HALL MEETING FACE TO FACE with his constituents.
Update: It appears that the press conference with the newspaper reporters was arranged at least a couple of weeks in advance so one would assume the meeting (and there was one) that was a private one at the hospital would have been arranged as well in advance. But, while the press conference was known, there was no notice to the public about the hospital meeting. And, in fact, there would have been time to advertise this in the newspaper.
Surely Mr Edwards does not think that a private, non-publicized meeting with a small subset of the population substitutes for a public, all invited town hall meeting. I hope not to hear him make any comments about what Somervell county residents want, then, as it would not be a fair representation.