>It’s been nearly a week now since Middletown Deputy Mayor Pam Brightbill announced that she wouldn’t seek another term on the Middletown Township Committee.
The news came as a shock to many, including Board of Education member Joan Minnues, who has worked closely with Brightbill over the years putting together events such as the Great Race and Project Prom. According to Minnues, who I spoke to briefly at the April 14th Board of Education Candidates Forum at Harmony School, Brightbill’s decision to step down from the Township Committee was a complete shock. She had told me that she speaks to Pam Brightbill often and had just spoken to her the day before the announcement and Pam gave her no indication of her desire to step down, It was a little out of left field.
So was this a last minute personal decision by our two-time Deputy Mayor in order for her to spend more time with her family and other endeavors or something more?
Those of us that have been keeping an eye on Town Hall have speculated privately for some time that Pam Brightbill was on the way out.
Her frequent meltdowns on the dais are legendary and her arrogant, self-serving display in front of the audience for the February 16th Library Board of Trustees meeting, where she squealed her dismay at board members for not sending her emails or keeping her “in the loop”, when it was her that had appointed many of them to their positions, made many mouths drop wide open in disbelief through out the audience that night, didn’t help matters.
But what really started the speculation flying about Brightbill was her near total meltdown during Committee Comments back at the September 20th, 2010 Township Committee meeting (audio below). At that meeting, she vented angrily at Township Administrator Tony Mercantante, for his lack of follow-up on many issues along with a total lack of communication between Mercantante, the Townships Committee and other various boards and commissions that she was serving on.
That type of public outburst between an elected Middletown GOP Township Committee member and a fellow Middletown GOP appointed official, must have caused just as much disbelief in the rank and file Republicans as it did to those us on the other side. After all, it’s a cardinal sin to air dirty laundry out to dry in front of the public, in such a manner.
I think it was becoming evident to the leaders of the Middletown Republican Party that Pam Brightbill was becoming a problem to them and they wanted her off the ticket before she caused any real damage to their chances of winning this year’s election.
The audio clip from the September meeting (above), runs 17 minutes long. It is fascinating to hear the desperate tone in Brightbill’s voice when she is reprimanding/pleading with Administrator Tony Mercantante for better communication while discussing many other issues haphazardly thrown in.