The first bout featured Mayor Jim Kalb and councilman Bob Mollette.
Vice president Marty Mohr stared at Mollette as Kalb and Mollette argued over the 2007 general fund budget.
“It's my budget,” Kalb said. “There it is. It's balanced. Don't call it a deficit again.”
The second confrontation of the evening featured Mohr and former city councilman Harald Daub calling each other liars, with President Howard Baughman banging on his gavel trying to restore order.
Mohr and Daub got into it over last year's purchase of police vehicles.
Monday's Mohr and Daub confrontation was a rematch of an argument the two got into a couple of years ago. In that event, Daub approached Mohr, who was seated at the chamber table, before stopping.
Monday's slate of bouts ended with police chief Charles Horner asking City Council to investigate Mollette's conduct in and out of City Council, after Mollette posted part of the conference agenda on his Web site.
Horner also said Mollette owns the www.dougdeepe.com Web site.
Mollette's wife, Teresa, previously has said she bought the name of the site from former owner John Welton. Her reasoning was to hold the site if Welton would ever want to operate it again.
Bob Mollette said he didn't know his wife had bought the site.
The arguing started shortly after a local minister led opening prayer, as City Council tried to pass the budget.
Auditor Trent Williams is predicting a $300,000 to $600,000 deficit, which is why Mollette, David Malone and Jerrold Albrecht do not want to pass it.
Mohr had some concerns, but he said they have been resolved, including granting Kalb a 5-percent raise instead of the 12-percent one he is requesting.
Mollette said Kalb presented the Council with a budget deficit instead of a balanced one. But Kalb said $272,000 in health insurance savings will balance the budget.
Mollette said he was concerned the money may not be enough to cover the projected shortfall, however.
“I'm not saying it won't come to that this year,” Kalb said to Mollette. “I hope it doesn't. It hasn't happened so far. But you keep talking about a deficit. This isn't a deficit. I'm not handing you an unbalanced budget. I'm offering you right here - this is a balanced budget.”
Kalb said Mollette was not happy with the budget revenue and expense projections.
“Now if you want to make projections and tell me what you think will get it and me adjust the budget to those figures, then that's what I'll have to do,” Kalb said.
He said the only thing left to cut is jobs.
The vibes of the Kalb/Mollette confrontation continued as Mollette wanted to discuss the passage of two ordinances which accepted federal money to buy bullet-proof vests and office equipment for the police department.
“That's good,” Mollette said. “Maybe we could ask the chief to tell us exactly how the money will be used.”
Baughman nixed that idea, though.
“We discussed that at the last conference session,” he said and quickly moved to the next item on the agenda.
Mollette said Horner was upset he posted a letter from a Cincinnati law firm saying a settlement was reached in a case against the police department.
“I don't think they wanted the information made public,” Mollette said. “There is an upcoming election and some people are afraid of the public. I think they've put me in front of some people's agenda.”
He said he was surprised at Horner's request to investigate him.
“I was listening in awe of what was going on around me,” Mollette said.
The City Council clashes were not lost on resident Eileen Perry, who spoke to the council.
“We're supposed to show dignity and respect when we address the Council,” she said. “This is probably why you don't want it on television. You were pitiful.”
City Council has discussed televising its meetings on the local access channel, but has not done so.
In other business, City Council passed ordinances: