An item on the agenda for the Tuesday, March 1 City Council meeting, which appears mundane, has had a lot of behind-the-scenes controversy.
The agenda item is to award a two-year $200,000 contract to Family Service of the Piedmont for homebuyer education and housing counseling services.
Family Service was notified in December that it had been awarded the contract, following the recommendation of a panel that reviewed the three proposals received by the city in response to a request for proposals (RFP) and before the vote by the City Council, which was supposed to take place in January.
However, Councilmember Sharon Hightower got in the way of awarding the contract, reportedly because the contractor that was rated third of three by the panel, Housing Consultants Group, complained to Hightower about not being awarded the contract.
As a result of Hightower’s involvement, the decision was made to have all three respondents to the RFP give a two-hour presentation to the panel with the notable addition of Hightower and Mayor Nancy Vaughan.
After those presentations on Monday Feb. 7, the panel rescored the three respondents and Family Service of the Piedmont once again received the highest rating, despite the addition of Hightower and Vaughan to the process.
Individual councilmembers including the mayor have no authority to award city contracts. The power to take action, including awarding contracts, can be exercised only by a majority vote of the City Council.
However, in this case, reports indicate that a majority of the City Council was not consulted on awarding contract or given the opportunity to participate in the second set of presentations.
How Hightower alone or Hightower and Vaughan held up awarding a contract without the knowledge or participation of the rest of the City Council is a question that should be asked at the March 1 meeting.
Not surprised at all. Just another example of 200k going down 1 of the many chosen rat holes in Greensboro.
Sharon Hightower shows her true feelings about Greensboro taxpayers by bullying the Council in an effort to serve her own needs and not those she represents. I for one am grateful Queen Nancy was there to at least offer some interference.
It’s time Tyrant Hightower hit the highway.
Leave it highwater. I’m sure some minority group felt slighted. Woo is me what’s Gso. coming too. In her eyes it doesn’t matter that the city is going to get the best value for the taxpayers dollar it only matters what color the company that are bidding is. So very sad. Shame on her and vaughn. Black only Companies. So much for equality.
Does the word illegal come to mind ???
Let me guess. . . . .Hightower is upset that some of her friends (and maybe relatives, but most certain her voters) were not getting part of the “loot.”
Since when is it the city’s responsibility to spend tax money to “counsel” prospective homebuyers? Someone needs to ask for a federal audit of any 501-3c tax funded organizations she’s involved. Am sure Yvonne could tell her how to get money simply by being elected.
Just another method of throwing City money to some special group that will yield zero results. If you were to ask for a report of this group’s success, they would be hard pressed to show anything meaningful.