Having attended two of the Jefferson County Courthouse Renovation Committee meetings, nothing has changed from the beginning. In fact, deterioration of the facts and process has accelerated in these two short meetings.
First and foremost at the Waltonville meeting the county presenter started with misleading statements about the quality of the structure that Union County has built representing it as a pole barn when in fact pictures can be shown that it is a very attractive and well-built brick structure costing approximately $12.l5 million and containing 45,000 square feet. This false statement of the building type did not go unchallenged. Another observation was that only the chairman of the committee was present at the Waltonville meeting. Where were the other two committee members? Board member Jim Laird was in attendance.
What is still very troubling is the lack of information being presented (none that would allow an informed individual to make a principled decision). The project is still being presented an an all or none proposal with a lot of unsupported scare tactics as a foundation. What ever happened to transparency from elected officials? Elected representatives have duped citizens in this county too many times. The only information needed is to make a sound voting decision: nothing more or nothing less. Just telling someone that a problem exists and giving outsiders an open checkbook to tell us what we need, why we need it, and not even consideration or question as to what we need and why we need it is an insult to the intelligence of community members (taxpayers) and an exhibition of a level of ineptitude (nothing criminal) on the part of several members of our county board.
When the board learns to deal with the citizens in a straight forward manner with knowledge, transparency and honesty and having exhausted and explored all viable alternatives only then coming to the voter with a well thought out creditable plan, a surprise might await them. But for the informed most of this group has squandered all trust.
The county board has obligated us to M360 for the sum of $75,000. I say pay them, thank them, and tell them we will see them in the sweet bye and bye.
Dexter D. Edmison