Slow down and get it right

EDITORIAL

Sometimes good ideas come along at bad times. Sometimes bad ideas look pretty good at first glance. And sometimes, no matter when it comes or what it looks like, a bad idea is simply that…a bad idea.

Time will tell if last week’s last-minute, off-the-cuff, shoot-from-thehip agenda addition to split the probate judge/commission chairman job is a good idea or a bad idea but the timing definitely appears to leave a lot to be desired.

Perhaps county government has grown to the point that the splitting of the job is best. If so, most observers (including this one) believe that the decision to overhaul county government deserved more than just token discussion.

Commissioner Dean Calvert’s proposed resolution, which was approved 4-0 by the commission, will bring about a fundamental change in the way the county does business but it seems to provide more questions than answers.

Chris Green was elected Probate Judge/Commission Chairman. Which job will he fill? Does he get to choose? What about his salary?… More on the money in a minute.

If we have a new commission chairman, do we still get a county administrator? Do we still need a county administrator if we have a fulltime commission chairman?

What will be the salary of the new position and where does the money come from? The proposal to take money from each district’s already cash-strapped road budget and the general fund looks shaky, at best. Remember, we are in the middle of the fiscal year Armageddon that experts warned about.

The idea presented might be best for the county in the long run. However, the way it was presented leaves a lot to be desired.

A called meeting has been set for Monday, Feb. 25, at 9 a.m. Let’s hope public input will be allowed and the commissioners are paying attention.

Another action taken by the commission at last week’s meeting has quickly drawn criticism. The idea of having to appear before a county official (definition needed, please) and presenting ID to sign an alcohol petition (or any other petition, for that matter) has already come under considerable scrutiny and could disappear before it sees the light of day.

Government can be a wonderful thing – in small doses, most of the time. The wheels of change grind on – no doubt about it. Let’s slow down and get it done right the first time. – rr