City Manager Dan Dahlgren said Thursday he has never tape-recorded any of his conversations with Mayor Donna Evans.
During a heated council session Tuesday night, Evans accused the city manager of having bugged his office in order to tape-record her conversations with him.Dahlgren admitted installing the equipment, publicly telling Evans he had decided to do it "because I don't trust you."
But the city manager Thursday clarified that he never actually taped any of his discussions with the mayor, even though recording equipment installed by the police department earlier this year is still in place and operational.
"I'm ready, any time it's needed," Dahlgren added.
He also said that whenever he does record conversations with anyone, "all parties know they're being taped."
When the issue came up during a heated discussion Tuesday night, the city manager did not indicate that he had not recorded any of his conversations with the mayor.
The taping issue was only discussed briefly, Dahlgren said, so he didn't get an opportunity to explain the matter further.
Tuesday night's flare-up over the recording equipment and other issues was the latest in a series of incidents that indicate discord and distrust among city leaders.
Following the meeting, Evans said she learned about the recording device being installed in Dahlgren's office shortly after taking office and has suspected the city manager might be taping her.
"I never knew for sure if he was or wasn't recording me," the mayor said. "I just knew the equipment had been installed, and I assumed it would be used for the intended purpose.
"Why would you even install it if you had no intention of using it?" Evans asked.
She conceded the issue may be a disconcerting one for city leaders, but added she's not apologizing for making it public.
"If you're going to be embarrassed about doing something like that," Evans said, "maybe you shouldn't do it."