MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - Mobile Executive Director of Public Services John Bell returned from vacation Tuesday to face the controversy that started with letters he wrote in April.
Before the council got down to the business on the agenda, Bell read an apology that had been demanded by the council president.
"I apologize to you personally and to the council as a whole. I also apologize to Mayor Jones for the disruption caused to his administration at this critical time for the city," Bell said.
Reggie Copeland was satisfied with the gesture.
"I accept your apology."
However, another council member who had been criticized in Bell's earlier letter was noticeably silent during the meeting.
Bell had accused Bess Rich of being "incapable of understanding" a storm water management contract.
"I sent a letter to Mr. Bell for clarification, and I hope to hear back from him," Rich said.
"How do you feel about his apology, though? asked FOX10.
"I had the letter so it wasn't news," Rich said.
While Rich waits for her explanation, Copeland made a peace offering toward Bell that led to applause as the two men shook hands.
"I'm a big guy. I accepted his apology as a man, and we've got to move on. This city is more important than my hurt feelings, or his inaccurate series of words. He apologized. He's a man, I'm a man, and I accept it and let's move on," Copeland said.
FOX10 News wanted to talk to Bell, but while the media was waiting for him in the atrium after the meeting, Bell left the auditorium by a back exit.
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