Flaherty said, however, that he suggests the DPW seek the input of the committee on the request for proposals process, as there are committee members whom Flaherty said can be of service to the process. McTygue, who two weeks ago criticized McCabe's decision to form another committee, said he would work with them in the future.
McCabe said he did not take McTygue's initial opposition as an affront, and even went so far as to say that there are times when he appreciates McTygue's "independent streak."
"Mr. McTygue and I have been on separate planes going to the same place," he said at the meeting.
Actions taken last week by the DPW may have made those plane rides a little turbulent, however.
On Dec. 11 and 12, Public Works crews began clearing the 5.2-acre site on Weibel Avenue " a full week before the city council adopted it as a tentative site.
This drew criticism from the mayor and some residents.
Longtime McTygue critic David Bronner, who said he favors a westside location for the facility, took pictures of the crew clearing trees and uprooting stumps from the site.
"This is Tom McTygue at his worst," he said. "It's just another case of him taking things into his own hands and saying 'It's my way or the highway,'" Bronner said.
He told the council Tuesday that he considered it financially irresponsible for the crew to be out there on the taxpayers' dime without the city council's approval.
McTygue and his brother, Director of Public Works Bill McTygue, said the primary reason for the clearing of the site at 60 Weibel Ave., was to keep the work crews busy in this snow-scarce December.
"Unlike some other cities, we don't sit in the municipal garage and play checkers," Thomas McTygue said.
For his part, McCabe said whether or not there was wrongdoing in the clearing of the site was unrelated to his committee's recommendation.
"The issue of his clearing is a separate issue," he said.
McCabe said his focus " and that of the new recreation committee " is to make sure quality is not sacrificed in what he says may be the largest financial undertaking, in adjusted dollars, in recent memory. ""