A Letter to the Editor – From the Mayor

Dear Mr. Michael Miller,

Your paper has now published two columns, falsely accusing me of cutting the volume on public speakers at City Commission meetings.  The dais has a graphic volume monitor for the public podium.

If a speaker is  tall and does not bend down a bit closer to the microphone, I turn the volume up as soon as I notice the low volume bars on the display.  This occurred when Stephen Cody spoke in January.  While this speaker was fully audible in the room, he was inaudible on recording until I noticed the low bars on the display, whereupon I turned up the volume.

Likewise, if a speaker yells into the microphone, the amplifier clips, hurting everyone’s ears and producing orange bars on the display.  I can slightly lower the amplification to improve the sound quality.  This happens often when Antoinette Fischer speaks, because she starts with a normal speaking voice and gradually increases her volume into the orange level.

The graphic volume monitor is in plain sight of other commission members, so if I were to turn down the volume for nefarious purposes, it would be immediately noticed by the commissioners to either side of me.  It’s never happened, so let’s end the false accusations.  Indeed, public apologies are in order from you and your guest columnists.

Philip Stoddard,

Mayor of South Miami

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4 Comments on "A Letter to the Editor – From the Mayor"

  1. Shawn Wexler | June 14, 2018 at 9:39 am | Reply

    Mayor Stoddard’s feigned discontent with the “accusations” leveled at him makes no mention of the fact that there is a taxpayer paid IT technician at every meeting who’s job is to make sure the audio and visual are of proper standards for the public. He also fails to mention that only during issues which he feels uncomfortable with does the volume somehow reaches inaudible levels. Perhaps he should relinquish his insecurity based controls.

  2. Donna Shelley | June 14, 2018 at 12:19 pm | Reply

    I have to ask why the chair of a meeting would want to be concerned with volume control. There are plenty of things to think about about when running a productive meeting. Acting as your own sound engineer needn’t be one of them. The city has a staff person who is assigned to take care of the electronics while recording and televising a meeting. Allow him to be responsible for it.

  3. Horace G. Feliu | June 14, 2018 at 3:48 pm | Reply

    Aside from the ridiculous and poor excuse for the use of volume control, which is clearly used to censor Public Remarks, is the sad realization that Commissioners are either complicit or ignorant. Commissioners by way of a written or verbal resolution may direct the City Manager to remove the taxpayer funded controls…..I would like to think the later is the reason.

  4. Lorie Yanoshik | June 14, 2018 at 7:53 pm | Reply

    An Apple app allows this system to be controlled remotely by an iOS device – which means that Mayor Stoddard can control the public podium audio from his iPhone or iPad. This is probably why the commissioners sitting on either side of Mayor Stoddard don’t notice him adjusting the volume of the graphic volume monitor.

    HiQnet Motion Control™ – an Apple iOS app enables customized control interfaces designed in Audio Architect to be exported to iOS devices for mobile system control. Dedicated design templates are available within Audio Architect for the configuration of customized interfaces, which can be used to control BSS Audio Soundweb London and DriveCore Install Series. Requires iOS 6.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. https://bssaudio.com/en

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