Update: Fellow Blogger/Sun Enterprise Editor Chris Scott emailed to let me know the Sun ran a clarification on the Moran story last Friday:Bold Mine
A story in Wednesday’s paper focused on city councilors exploring if the city could recoup $33,000 it has paid in the last year to Central Parking System of Nashville, Tenn.
“as compensation for its management services.” Councilor Rodney Elliott, who raised the issue, used the phrases “incentive fee” and “incentive award” to describe the $33,000, but a review of the city’s contract with Central Parking describes those payments as “as compensation for its management services.” The Sun used the language in the contract rather than Elliott’s terminology, which both referred to the $2,750 monthly payments, totaling $33,000 in the last year. The expenditure is a line item in the city’s budget titled “Management — Fee & Incentive
In yesterday’s Sun Political Column I read this item:
CITY COUNCILOR Rodney Elliott repeatedly used the term “incentive fee” or “incentive award” on Tuesday night when talking about the $33,000 paid to Central Parking System annually in $2,750 monthly installments. Except the word “incentive” appears nowhere in the contract, which a review by City Solicitor Christine O’Connor confirmed.
Asked if he was using the word “incentive” to hint that Central Parking was getting rewarded by the administration for good performance, Elliott responded that he wasn’t playing word games.
He says he goal was to recoup the money from the line item for $33,000 in the parking budget titled “Management — Fee and Incentive.”
That $33,000 is the fee paid to Central Parking as “compensation for its management services,” known as a management fee. Elliott told The Column. City Manager Bernie Lynch told The Column Friday that to his knowledge no incentive fee has been paid to Central Parking.
Neither Lynch nor O’Connor told Elliott during the meeting that “incentive” doesn’t appear in the contract. Asked why he did not correct Elliott’s terminology, Lynch said he wanted to verify the terms of the contract.
Lynch said the “incentive” budget line was created by the city auditor in 2004 and he does not know why it was titled that way.
It struck me funny that they would mention that Sunday yet Reporter Lyle Moran who was at the meeting and wrote a story for Wednesday’s Sun never mentioned it and in fact used the proper term not the term Councilor Elliot used.
Council wants $33G parking fee recouped
By Lyle Moran
City Councilor Rodney Elliott’s motion to have Lynch examine rescinding the management fee paid to Central Parking System of Nashville, Tenn., came weeks after it was revealed a Central Parking employee allegedly stole close to $38,000 from the city’s parking kiosks last year and possibly years prior.
“We award money on a monthly basis to a company that stole money from the city of Lowell,” said Elliott. “We should pursue it and pull it back.”
So did Moran correct Elliot out of friendship or did he take part in what is apparently a new practice in journalism in which they allow the people they are interviewing to get a look at their own quotes before publication and censor them.
The New York times had a story on this new trend today and BU Prof. of Media Chris Daley has a BLOG POST on it also.