On Monday, Nov. 18 I took a couple of hours off to attend the meeting of the Marion County Board of Supervisors as previously instructed by one of them to ask a couple of questions and offer a couple of comments. By means of a previous text conversation I notified one of them that I have no intention to bring up the issue of the removal of the oak trees from courthouse square. Obviously this statement was not relayed to the rest of the board.
Upon entering the boardroom I was cheerfully greeted and invited to have a seat. While waiting for the meeting to start I enjoyed a short chat with Mrs. Susan Amundson, who was covering the meeting for the newspaper. Once the meeting started all went along smoothly as decisions were made concerning new equipment for the volunteer fire department. Next business was opening bids for construction work. The three gentlemen representing the companies submitting the bids were instructed they would be notified of a decision so they made exit just as the volunteers did. Now I am the only person left to speak to the board. After waiting for about another half hour I finally had to return to my duties as a tax paying citizen and earn my paycheck.
I left severely disappointed because once the meeting started I felt invisible. They never acknowledged I was there and just went to passing papers back and forth for signatures and talking amongst themselves about what I have no idea. My guess would be that they felt I was only going to complain about the removal of the trees from the courthouse. Unfortunately for them they left me one more alternative to get their attention, our local newspaper.
Had our supervisors given me the opportunity I would have left the meeting knowing I did my part and nobody else would have known about it. I first would like to congratulate those who won their re-election and offer my condolences to those who didn’t. I would like to state that when three supervisors, two of which are not returning to office, decided to increase the amount budgeted to the Marion County Development Partnership after the budget was set was a dirty joke played on the people who have just been elected. I never said illegal. I only say it was dirty politics. I am making no comments about the development partnership, only the politics.
I wanted to express my feelings about the city and their dealings. Concerning the sportsplex it would seem like they would have had a better plan before raising their tax rate. Remember that the county was left out when the tax increase was voted on so leave the county out altogether and build it in the city, unless of course the county gets a phenomenal fee up front with percentages of income and the ability to renew contract periodically. Now that we have increased tax on restaurants and motels a portion of that money is being used for the Christmas lighting, which is for tourism which is perfectly fine until the county is approached to fund the lighting for the courthouse. Remember that the city is collecting taxes from the county citizens as well as others so understand that the county is already contributing to the whole show. Now before anyone gets their feathers ruffled I am just wondering when did the city ask permission to decorate the courthouse in the first place?
Next I would like to ask the board where they stand concerning the city annexation? If the city annexes part of the county does that mean the county is going to be losing income while the city is gaining? If that is the case then why is this board not standing against the annexation since we are not able to maintain on the income we have now?
Above all I will again state that if the board of supervisors really wants input from those paying their salaries that the business meetings should be scheduled in appropriate manner. I am not trying to degrade nor demean anyone or any entity, only stating the views of many of the citizens whom I have listened to.
Kenneth R. McNease