2015-03-26 / Opinion

Rights in Newport Moot

To the Editor:

I just left the March 18 special council meeting and I am disgusted with our elected officials, at least four of them that is.

They voted to take the intellectual property of one man and give it to a person who worked for and was trained by him. Their choice has never run a full marathon and our leaders consider him as the right person to steal this one.

The Newport Marathon has been taken from a company owned by a Mr. Mathews and handed to a company owned by a Mr. Gray. This event was started and refined by Mr. Mathews with Mr. Gray as an employee, an ex-employee who has now decided to take the event as his and with our council's approval, succeeded.

I see this as corporate theft with the Newport City Council as accomplices. The title, starting line, route and finish line are the intellectual property of Mr. Mathews, as he has developed and cultured this event for six years. When a problem came up, he fixed it immediately with no complaints.

By giving this event license to Mr. Gray, our city leaders have said that just because you designed, developed, named and actually did something, your rights to it in Newport are moot. At the meeting, Councilor Camacho made the most sense but the block of four were not interested in reason.

Our city–paid legal staff sat and watched this whole thing play out without uttering one word. Why? Who knows?

I hope Mr. Mathews goes to court with this theft and wins, and is granted punitive damages and the right to run the event. It's his event until he does something to lose it.

Jack Milburn

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