City Commission meeting gets heated when OneFargo leader speaks out

FARGO, N.D. — Monday’s Fargo City Commission meeting turned hostile when some members of the public got to the microphone.

Wess Philome of OneFargo was invited by the Human Relations Commission to discuss a “We Are One” Statement of Intent between his group and the city surrounding racial equity.

The document was created to establish regular meetings between OneFargo, police, and city leaders in order to create change in the community.

As Philome took to the podium, he began by saying that it’s unacceptable for Deputy Chief Ross Renner to be named interim Chief of Police without public input on the decision.

Philome’s mic was then cut off, as Mayor Mahoney said this wasn’t the topic at hand.

“We want a Statement of Intent and we want discussion, but when we try and have discussion, my microphone gets cut off,” continued Philome. “I understand that at this time, my mic has been cut off and so has my voice. I will let you guys make your vote on the Statement of Intent. Whether you guys actually show up, listen and have dialogue and create progressive change will absolutely be up to you.”

Mahoney said public comment was not on the agenda for the meeting, but that the Commission would be open to speaking at a different time.

Philome went on to say that he was originally planning on holding a rally Friday honoring Chief David Todd’s retirement, but says it will now be a rally outside the police department instead.

The motion to move forward with OneFargo’s Statement of Intent passed 3-2, with Deputy Mayor Dave Piepkorn and Commissioner Tony Gehrig casting the dissenting votes.

Categories: Community, Local News, North Dakota News