The city wants control

Published 6:51 am Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Dear Editor,

In the Aug. 16 Advocate-Messenger, the paper reported the city as unhappy with the direction of the new Parks and Recreation director search. The chairman of the Parks and Recreation board appropriately commented, “I’m not really sure what (City Manager) Mr. Scott wants from this …”  I believe the answer is a simple one.

It seems what City Manager Scott wants regarding the Recreation Department is control. Some just have problems relating with others if they don’t have it, specifically when others who have standing in the city manager’s area of responsibility aren’t afraid to voice their position as the former recreational director was willing to do. What does this say about leadership?

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Disturbing patterns raise questions. Isn’t what we have witnessed with the $50,000 park study, and now seeing played out by certain leadership in city government (specifically the city manager and engineer) in part a ruse, to justify a coordinated attack upon the former recreation department director who refused to give in and accept petty attempts at control of Millennium Park? And who then used the power of the purse to attempt to have the director dance to their tune, as exampled by the attitude of Commissioner Caudill’s comments? “If you got ‘em by their budget, their hearts and minds will follow.” Oooohh “tough talk!” Interesting the same attitude wasn’t incorporated when city leadership manipulated their own ordinance, allowing our EDP more city money when requested by the Boyle County Industrial Foundation. But then, isn’t blood thicker than water?

• Why was representation from Fiscal Court and Parks and Recreation left off a steering committee regarding the $50,000 park study when these entities have standing on the issue? The city engineer claimed it wasn’t a steering committee although the presentation file, letters and a representative of another body described it as such in a commission meeting. 

• How can we trust certain city leadership when Wesiger Park’s renovation real cost was $900,000?

• How can a city engineer claim ignorance regarding a Millennium Park water leak when others not employed by the city knew it? Untruthfulness or incompetence? And this example of leadership wants control of Millennium Park?

Is this really more about community or control? $50,000 of public funds is a high price to pay to, in part, get one’s way, but easier when it’s not your money. Perhaps the real motivation for controlling the search is now emerging?

Randy Gip Graham