Yesterday I watched the video of this month’s county commission meeting. The night before Jerry Chadwell had already given me a partial blow-by-blow account when I ran into him at Pizza Hut. It was a fine case of our county government trying to restrict the ability of the citizens addressing the commission.
Now I know I give the commission a hard time from time to time. I was pretty rough on them when they’re sales tax referendum campaign information was not a good educational tool. I also give them credit when they at least try to do something right like Lonas Young Park (though frankly it needs a few things done to improve it).
Monday night somebody put “citizen’s input” on the agenda. Of course some time ago the commission took that right away from our citizens. Instead of honoring the agenda item the mayor was ready just to skip over it. Fortunately Jerry Chadwell was able to get the county attorney to rule on it.
Now here is where I truly have the problem. The commission was going to vote to remove this item from the agenda. What makes me even madder is that seven commissioners voted to remove it. I am willing to bet that had three of them not been absent then it would have passed.
This is another slap in the face to the good folks of Campbell County. Oh I am sure they do not want to hear what Jerry or Jim Slusher or whoever have to say because it is genuinely and often times correctly critical of them as elected officials. Heck I don’t care if Hodor the village idiot wants to speak I feel as a citizen he should at least be heard.
Jerry and Jim generally have good points to present to our local legislative body. I know some of it is critical of the squires (with respect to Boomer I love this title for them). But you know what? If you can’t take the heat you need to go ahead and resign from your seat right now. Hopefully if you don’t want to hear the citizens they will vote you out anyway.
I am sure Jerry and Jim are under their skin like chiggers at this point. But if it were not for Jerry Chadwell we would likely still have the Martin regime running our schools. The level of corruption he uncovered, and make no doubt about it Jerry uncovered it not Jeff Marlow, was staggering. Like him or not Jerry was a hero in this case and deserves some respect for it.
I do not know Jim Slusher on any sort of personal level, but from listening to him he is intelligent and well spoken. I can’t even say that for some of the folks on the commission. They simply do not like it when he calls them out on the way things are budgeted. Even if he is 100% in the wrong, which I personally believe he is correct, he still deserves to have his voice heard. According to what people have told me Mr. Slusher has stated he has no desire to be on the commission. That is a shame because I think he needs to consider it. He would certainly be a fresh voice.
I know the commission has a tough job. But they should not be such a bunch of babies about citizen’s being critical. In fact I would like to encourage all of you to show up at the next workshop and tell them exactly what you think of them good or bad. In spite of what commissioner White seems to think it is indeed the county’s business to hear from the folks that live, vote, and most importantly pay taxes here. I guess they all feel safe because they have two years left.