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Mayor admonishes Bothwell for ‘Pit of Despair’ email
Wednesday, 05 April 2017 10:50

From Staff Reports

In an unusual step, Asheville City Councilman Cecil Bothwell was publicly admonished by Mayor Esther Manheimer during a council meeting on March 14 for an email he sent that she said was tantamount to him exerting “undue influence” over a council-appointed advisory team. 

The mayor said that “I don’t think it’s appropriate for us to interfere with the task force and their work.” She was referring to his March 8 email to Haywood Street Advisory Team Chairman Andrew Fletcher and moderator Chris Joyell, the director of the nonprofit Asheville Design Center. 

They were hired by the city to help officials resolve what to do with the city-owned land downtown referred to by some cynics as the “Pit of Despair.”

Bothwell, who is running for re-election and wants the property to be used for a park, wrote the email after attending a March 8 public meeting. The meeting’s intent — as stated — was for the advisory team to review with anyone interested what it had learned after almost a year of meetings during which it gathered public input on the land across from the U.S. Cellular Center. 

Bothwell’s email with a subject line “FAIL,” began with “What the hell? You promised people a ‘vision’ and delivered a pile of crap.” Later in the email, he called the process “really utter b------t.” 

 



 


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