Editorial: Get strong; maintain our trust

May. 02, 2013 @ 06:50 PM

Two crippling characteristics need to be eliminated before the commissioners in Vance County render themselves useless to a community whose variables beg for strong leadership.

In a special called meeting Wednesday, commissioners missed one opportunity and woefully fouled up another. The end result was a clear message pettiness has found its way in, and responsibility has been turned out.

The main purpose of the meeting was the county budget, presented with no tax rate increases in a more than $42 million general fund package that rose only 2 percent. Contradictory comments regarding the goodness of getting it early and questioning why it happened that way are perplexing and failed to show unity.

Budgets are complex. They take time to make and to review. Remember, the governor’s proposal was out March 20.

A suggestion the county has to wait for the state is misleading. The two are operating in the same time window, and the county simply has to observe possibilities as the state moves through committees and chamber floors.

The board and the preparers should be commended for this effort. It should be a positive to making adjustments in the proposal and moving forward. And it should be repeated annually.

“Unbelievable” was the comment heard and befitting the commissioners’ failure to own up to a bungled attempt in their April meeting for a resolution against voter identification. Eddie Wright’s proposal wasn’t on the agenda, wasn’t written out and wasn’t like that of Granville County as he said because Granville County didn’t have one.

How they voted matters none. If they had produced an agenda item, written out and with correct information from any neighboring counties, there’s no reason to believe the vote would have been any different.

Where commissioners failed the very people who elected them Wednesday was not owning up to the mistake of voting on false information presented curiously. The previous verbal resolution, a first in the county annals as far as anyone seems to remember, wasn’t even mentioned, much less rescinded with an apology issued to the public they serve.

Mistakes happen. Owning this one and taking responsibility didn’t concern this board, which can be hard on individuals standing before them without answers.

And it only leads us to question them even more.