The leader of a group calling for improvements to the Stephenville Senior Citizens Center has called for a truce.
“Let’s end the bickering between you and me,” Ron Wall said in a letter this week directed at council member Mark Murphy.
Wall said he accepts that Murphy wants the citizens of Stephenville to have “total say” in what improvements should be made to the center. He also said he realizes that Murphy has the “best interests” of the citizens of Stephenville in his “heart.”
By the same token, Wall said he accepts Mayor Rusty Jergins’ recent comments that the council welcomes and will take into consideration comments from senior citizens.
However, Wall said, “There is a proviso.”
In his letter to Murphy, he said, “You, the mayor and entire council come to our regular Wednesday lunch on July 11. I’ll prepare a pretty good pot roast - at my expense. And even pay the normal ‘lunch fee’ for you.
“Each of you sit with a different group of ‘seniors’ and let them tell you what their desires are. I’ll leave the premises at the amen and the conversation will not be affected by an ‘outsider.’”
In response, Murphy said he’s “all for working in the spirit of cooperation.” However, he said he has another meeting on July 11.
“But I will go have lunch at the Senior Citizens Center some day before long,” Murphy said. “I’ve visited there with them several times and been to a couple of dances as well.”
Last week, Murphy praised Wall for being a “well-spoken individual who, I’m sure, means well and wants the best for our area as do I. However, he is not a city resident and will not be voting for all the items he proposed unless he moves into town.”
Wall countered, saying he does live outside the city limits but noted that he does pay taxes on rental property he owns in Stephenville.
Although it remained unclear Wednesday how many council members could accept the July 11 invitation, at least one council member said he would be willing to sit down and talk over a meal at the Senior Citizens Center as well.
“I consider it (the latest Wall letter), the previous letter and the proposed meeting/luncheon on 7/11 to be valid sources of information which should be useful as we discuss the future of our facilities,” council member Malcolm Cross said.
DOUG MYERS is Managing Editor of the Empire-Tribune. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (254) 965-3124, ext. 229.