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Source: Bookmeyer appointees to Human Rights interrupted business

MASON CITY – A source close to the Mason City Human Rights agency has informed NIT that appointees to the Human Rights Commission made by Mayor Eric Bookmeyer interrupted the normal proceedings of the board.

According to the source, who wished to remain anonymous due to fear of retribution, Human Rights Commission members Steve Palmer and Brian McNamara immediately set about disrupting the Commission once the Mason City Council approved them.

The source indicated McNamara and Palmer complained about lunch being served to the Commission and the practice was halted. Prior to the complaints, Human Rights Director Lionel Foster had, for years, purchased lunch for the Human Rights Commission. The board is all volunteers and are not paid. Most lunches consisted of sandwiches, chips and soda during the monthly board meetings, routinely held over the noon hour.

The source also indicated that the loss of former Commission members Kathy Loeckle and Cathy Gaines was a major blow to the board.

“Cathy Gaines was a commissioner for over 17 years and Kathy Loeckle had over 24 years on the commission and were not re-appointed” by Bookmeyer. “These two commissioners (Palmer and McNamara) did nothing but halt the process of the commission.”

The source claims that Palmer and McNamara slowed down the work of the commission, preventing Gaines from being able to submit data to the city council, the main reason why Bookmeyer refused to re-appoint Gaines to the commission.

Furthermore, the source claims that Bookmeyer refused to re-appoint Gaines to the commission because “she had a run-in with the mayor about him wanting younger people (to serve on boards) and when she confronted him about it that was when he wanted nothing to do with her.”

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