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August 7, 2019
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Flint City Councilman Allan Griggs issued an apology after vulgar comments on a social media tirade but a pair of citizens demanded that he resign during Wednesday's meeting.
Posted on August 7, 2019
BY MIKE KILLBREATH
CCN Executive Editor
Two calls for resignation surface at Flint City Council meeting for 8th Ward Councilman Griggs after social media firestorm
FLINT (CCN) — Two citizens took to the podium Wednesday during public comment at a Flint City Council committee meeting to demand that 8th Ward Councilman Allan Griggs resign. He is under fire after a tirade of vulgar comments on social media.
Councilman Griggs has issued an apology with a post on his Facebook page and on the page of community activist Arthur Woodson.
Woodson was one of the speakers during the public comment portion of Wednesday's Finance Committee meeting. He demanded that Councilman Griggs step down and Woodson also blasted the first-term councilman on The Morning Gazette Radio Show.
"I don't accept his apology," Woodson said. "He needs to resign."
Woodson told listeners (and repeated the request at the city council's committee meeting) that he would change his position on demanding that Griggs resign if he seeks help for alcohol and anger management. He also asked that Griggs, a veteran, help Woodson expose problems on issues important to veterans.
Councilman Griggs posted an apology as follows: "I really messed up and said words on Art Woodson’s post that I should have never even mumbled. Just before that, some lady called me and blamed me for the prostitution on Fenton Road. Still, that’s not an excuse for me talking so rudely to Ms Green, Art, or anyone on that post. To all that witnessed my garbage mouth and temperament, I sincerely apologize."
Woodson told the radio show audience that the councilman was drinking when he "came on my page and made numerous horrible comments to my friends." He added, "Griggs and (4th Ward) Councilwoman Kate Fields were making angry posts because I posted something positive about (1st Ward) Councilman (Eric) Mays. I can say what I want on my Facebook page. Mays was blasting the mayor and I agreed with what he had to say. They (Griggs and Fields) didn't like it and went after me."
Councilman Mays often spars at meetings with Fields, Griggs, 7th Ward Councilman Monica Galloway and 9th Ward Councilwoman Eva Worthing.
A recall movement surfaced against Councilman Griggs in May. Proposed ballot language was rejected once but revised language was approved by a 3-0 vote of the Genesee County Election Commission. Mays has been a leader in the recall drive against Councilman Griggs and he has also spoke out on recall efforts under way against Galloway and Fields.
Susan Green also spoke at Wednesday's meeting and demanded the 8th Ward councilman step down.
Councilman Griggs did not respond at the public meeting to the demands to resign.
City Council President Herbert Winfrey suggested that his colleagues refrain from making posts on Facebook in the future. Councilwoman Jerri Winfrey-Carter of the 5th Ward echoed the comments of the 6th Ward councilman by saying Facebook should be used by elected officials only for family photos and to communicate important announcements to their constituents.
Joyce Ellis-McNeal, who lost in the 2017 general election race against Griggs, was critical of the 8th Ward representative's opposition against Mayor Weaver who had a late campaign scandal when residents learned that her campaign finance report included a $7,500 check for "consulting to Club 69 Adult Entertainment. She called the councilman "sick" and said, "Griggs is a (expletive) man. He loves Club 69."
Woodson told radio show listeners Wednesday that he has a video of Griggs being "carried out of the stripper club, too drunk to walk."
Councilman Griggs was invited by The Morning Gazette Radio Show to react to comments by Woodson and others during the social media firestorm "to do some damage control" and he responded via text: "No thanks."
Ellis-McNeal also took issue with where Griggs lives, alleging that he isn't a resident of the 8th Ward. "He lives full time in (the 6th) ward," she said. "Everybody (knows) this and (embraces) it."
Citizen Bobby Johnson made a complaint to the State Police about the same issue and provided video evidence to The Morning Gazette Radio Show that showed Griggs' vehicle at another address not used on his application for a spot on the ballot. Johnson made the accusations on Facebook and during a debate hosted by The Morning Gazete Radio Show at Krystal Jo's Diner before the November 2017 election. Griggs said he sleeps at the 8th Ward address where he operates a bed and breakfast business, and added, "We keep our dogs at the 6th Ward address."
State Police did not charge Griggs at the time.
Ellis-McNeil was also critical of The Morning Gazette Radio Show allowing Woodson on the air, saying, "Somehow your show (picks) and (chooses) who speaks for (African Americans). It not the wheel that makes the loudest noise, it the (quiet) ones. Flint loves backwardness."
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