There's been a lot of unnecessary conversation about the fact that Da Mayor announced his second round of committee assignments and, once again, council member Angela Hunt was passed over for a committee chair or vice chair position. And I'm thinking "So, what's the big deal?" It's not like she's been kicked off the council. Her voice will still be heard where it matters, at the council horseshoe and at full council briefings. She will continue to be an active voice -- undoubtedly one of the most active voices -- on the council. Not only that, Ms. Hunt will still be on committees and will be an outspoken member of those committees, shaping agenda items that go before the full council. I haven't seen what committees she's been assigned to for the next two years, but I don't think they'll change that much from the ones she was already assigned to: Finance, Audit & Accountability; Housing; Quality of Life; and Transportation & Environment.
I wasn't even going to write the chair snub about it until I saw that Ms. Hunt said essentially the same thing today on her blog. She writes:
"99% of my district couldn’t care less who the council committee chairs are. They care about how the city’s going to handle this budget crisis, what we’re doing to lower crime, how we’ll fix code and repair our streets. They worry about cuts to our libraries and parks and senior services. The very last thing they are concerned about is council committee assignments, and their priorities are my priorities. To that end, I’m going to keep focusing on the issues that matter."
I would also argue that 99 percent of all voters could car less about the council's committee chairs or even the committees themselves. Notice how many citizens attend committee meetings versus full council agenda or briefing sessions. I would also argue that most citizens are more concerned about zoning issues (What? You want to put a Wal-Mart in my neighborhood? Over my dead body.) than they are about "cuts to our libraries and parks and senior services." And zoning issues are not heard by any city council committee before they go to the full council.
So, in this matter, I agree completely with Angela Hunt. No committee chairs = no big deal.