Wheeling village leader accused of U.S. rights hypocrisy
Wheeling Village President Pat Horcher proclaimed "Constitution Week" recently only to immediately trample on a citizen's right to free speech, the Edgar County Watchdogs (ECW) allege.
The issue arose during the public comment portion of a meeting after Village Clerk Elaine Simpson read the proclamation that urged citizens to reflect on the privileges of being American and the accompanying rights and responsibilities.
When a resident later sought to address the board, and specifically her trustee, Mary Krueger, Horcher interrupted her to say that she needed to address the board as a whole.The ECW noted that the Open Meetings Act allows meeting attendees to address their public officials in any way consistent with the rules established by that public body. The resident was objecting to actions taken against local businesses, which she felt were inconsistent with the treatment of businesses connected to the board.
“In a supreme act of hatred and contempt towards a citizen voicing her opinion, Horcher continually interrupted her comments, acted in an unprofessional way, appeared to be acting on previous bad advice from their attorney, and finally ejected her from the meeting through the use of a city police officer,” the ECW said.