We were pleased to see that The Sun chose to cover the decision of the Federal Hill Neighborhood Association (FHNA) to remove three members from its board ("One man has control of neighborhood association," Dec. 21). However, we feel that the content, title, and tone of the article does not accurately capture what transpired during the meeting nor the events that lead to this decision.
The article by Luke Broadwater and Steve Kilar suggests that the decision to remove three members from the FHNA board was the result of a power grab from one individual, Ryan Hada. Having attended that meeting, we can assure you that what transpired was not the result of the urging of one individual. The vote to remove the board members represents the will of an overwhelming majority of association members.
The article fails to reflect the earnest discussion among community members that took place at the meeting and the facts that led to the decision. To imply that former board member Paul Robinson was removed simply because of his opposition to such ludicrous-sounding activities as beer pong suggests the reporters who covered this story did not understand the events that transpired nor the tenor of the meeting.
Though the controversy surrounding discussions of funds may have immediately precipitated the decision to vote these three individuals out of office, it was quite clear from much of the discussion at the meeting that members have long had concerns about the ability of these individuals to act on behalf of the community. Simply put, the three individuals who were voted off of the board were removed because they no longer had the confidence of the members of the FHNA.
Rather than trying to understand the concerns of the FHNA membership, the reporters chose instead to focus the majority of article on the perspective of the three board members (who did not attend the meeting) and the legal judgment of the attorney the removed board members consulted. It seems strange to give so much space to the opinion of these four individuals rather than the hundred or so members of the FHNA who held a starkly different view.
The article also doesn't capture the fact that there was a tremendous sense of relief among members after the vote. If you review the minutes the meeting, you will see there was overwhelming support for the motion. Moreover, if you review the video tapes of the meeting, you will see much applause when the motion to remove these three individuals from office was approved.
The former board members and their attorney may choose to spend their time trying to find loopholes in procedure to justify their continued control of the board. But they should understand that in doing so they are acting in their own self-interest and not at the will of the members of the FHNA. For the sake of their community, they should recognize that the FHNA membership has spoken.
Thank you for taking time to better understand the needs and concerns of the Federal Hill community.
Jennifer Nuzzo, Tara Kirk Sell, Marc Kuchner and Greg Sell, Baltimore