JOLIET – Joliet City Councilman Pat Mudron described a fellow councilman as using “bully” tactics in a Monday night confrontation with the general manager of the Rialto Square Theatre.
Mudron, who serves as the council liaison to the Rialto board, made his comments Wednesday at a Rialto board meeting in which general manager Randy Green was commended for his composure during the face-off with Councilman Larry Hug.
“I do believe his tactics are to bully,” Mudron said of Hug.
Mudron, who at the council meeting told Hug he was making a “personal attack” against Green, also said Hug should have come to a Rialto board meeting to make his comments.
“As we all know there’s no TV here. Since there’s no TV, he’s not coming,” Mudron said.
The City Council meetings are broadcast on JCTV Channel 6.
Hug, contacted later, said the budget meeting was the appropriate forum since he was questioning the city’s annual $600,000 contribution to the Rialto.
“If they felt I was too harsh on Randy Green, that’s up to interpretation. Pat Mudron – I have no idea what world he’s thinking in,” Hug said. “There’s no bullying going on. There was an appointed, or hired, official and an elected official discussing public funds.”
Hug at the Monday meeting repeatedly questioned Green’s knowledge of marketing practices while also mentioning how much he gets paid. Hug was animated through most of the discussion and at one point said he was tired of “the polished turd,” a phrase Hug later said was meant to refer to the Rialto’s business model and not the theater itself.
Rialto board Chairman Dan Vera at the Rialto board meeting initiated the discussion about what happened Monday, saying Green had handled himself well.
“Randy, nice job at the microphone – staying professional,” Vera said.
Other board members also commended Green.
“I want to personally thank Randy for his professionalism and his composure during that debacle,” said board member David Thornton, who was at the Monday meeting.
Rialto patron Tim Shanahan of Manhattan, also at the Monday meeting, described the Hug-Green encounter as “embarrassing for everyone who was there.”