Last night the Blaine County School Board held a public meeting via video.
At the beginning of the video, several people are present. Blaine County Superintendent GwenCarol Holmes and Blaine County School Board Members Lara Stone and Dan Turner are present. About one and a half minutes into the video and board member Keith Roark joins the video meeting.
For approximately three minutes the group does not appear to realize they are “live” on video where the public can see and hear what is happening.
During that time, Superintendent Holmes and School Board Member Roark make comments about the mayor of Carey and the mayor of Ketchum.
Here is a link to the video of the discussion before they officially start their meeting:
When the video first begins, Holmes tells Stone that she just wants to “beat her head against the wall.”
Holmes goes on to tell Stone that the mayor of Carey, Randy Patterson, was not concerned about his community and the Coronavirus. Holmes mentions that Carey has eight cases currently.
Then Holmes brings up the mayor of Ketchum, Neil Bradshaw, and that his ex-wife Leslie Manookian, allegedly sent them “nasty” emails. No further information is given about what was contained in those emails.
As Holmes was discussing the emails, Roark entered the meeting.
Holmes informs Roark that she was discussing her meeting with the mayors and had a headache from the meeting. Roark tells Holmes that he used to be a mayor and if there was more than one mayor he doesn’t know how she puts up with it.
Roark then asks Holmses,
This was Neil Bradshaw pontificating again about how dangerous it is to wear a mask?
Holmes confirms what Roark said and as she begins to discuss the Carey mayor joining the call and his usual absence from the meeting,
Turner then interrupts the group and tells them they are live on video.
However, Blaine County School Board Clerk Vicki Pitcairn, tells the group they are still in their “practice session.”
Stone then says,
Thank you for interrupting that. That was important.
Turner then tells the group again that he received a text message and the message says,
Hey Dan, people can see and hear you guys now FYI.
After a few moments of silence and some additional comments, Pitcairn confirms that the group can be seen and heard. She tells the group she is going to begin the “webinar” if they are ready.
Idaho Dispatch has reached out to all of the Blaine County School Board members, the Blaine County Superintendent, and the mayors of Carey and Ketchum for comment.
Roark responded to Idaho Dispatch with the following statement:
What was said prior to the meeting speaks for itself and need not be retracted, clarified, or added to.
Mayor Patterson (Carey) send Idaho Dispatch the following email in response to the Blaine County School Board and Superintendent’s comments:
I’m sorry to say that I am not surprised. The Blaine County Board of Commissioners and every other Mayor in the county passed emergency orders last spring granting themselves emergency powers due to
covid-19. I chose not to pursue taking on those emergency powers. Most of the other Mayors wanted to show a unified front and were disappointed that I took a different approach.
I believe that people are smart enough to make good choices. Different people have different risk tolerances. Some are very fearful and some feel that while it is a risk, they can accept the risk. I supported what their decisions either way. While the County and other Mayors shut down more businesses than the state order did, I let businesses in Carey continue by making the adjustments they needed to mitigate the risks. Every business is essential to the people who own it and to the people who work there.
I believe in the 1st amendment that allows people to peaceably assemble. There is no exception for an emergency in that amendment. If you don’t want to take the risk, you can stay home.
The County, some Cities and the school district are using the Harvard Global Health Institute risk assessment which is more restrictive than the plan the South Central Health District uses. This has made it so students only attend school 2 days a week in class and 2 days a week online. It also has made it so the sports teams don’t know until the day before or that day if they will be able to play. The mental gymnastics they have put the students through borders on child abuse.
Gwen Carol Holmes is the highest paid Superintendent in the State of Idaho. As such, you would think she would be a little more professional.
The other individuals who spoke in the video or were spoken about have not yet returned comment to Idaho Dispatch. We will update the article if they do.
Tags: Blaine County School Board, Blaine County Superintendent, Carey, Dan Turner, GwenCarol Holmes, Keith Roark, Ketchum, Lara Stone