Reader questions spending for consultant during crisis

Published 10:08 pm Monday, May 4, 2020

Dear Editor,

In a completely tone-deaf vote, the Danville City Commission has approved spending $74,000 for yet another consultant during a time of unemployment and shuttered small businesses. Is this the best expenditure of funds during a crisis?  We will need any extra money we have to offset the reduction in business tax revenues or to help our citizens survive these difficult circumstances.

For several years, I have made public statements concerning the need for better pay for our police and fire personnel. I have also repeatedly decried the excessive use of taxpayers’ money to hire consultants for insight into issues that should be handled by our own administrative employees.  We are paying Mr. Milliron $135,000 a year. He has previously been a city manager in other communities and should have seen other police and fire departments from which he could discern problems, patterns, and solutions. During his four months in Danville, he has now hired two consultant companies to help him with his job.

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Our police department has an above average incident of employee turnover. There are only two reasons for this type of turnover, low pay or undesirable working conditions. Routine employee exit questionnaires could have revealed which problem we have in Danville. It is the responsibility of our city manager to discern and solve employee issues. And it is the responsibility of our city commission to keep a check on how he spends our money.

Wilma Brown