In relation to John Boyle’s article of Sunday, October 20th, the Buncombe County GOP believes the following should also be considered when talking about the Buncombe County Commissioners and how they have responded to past blunders that has cost our county money that could have been used to help the residents of this county.
Local government officials such as county commissioners, when elected, pledge management and fiduciary responsibility. It is not a salaried career. While some small ruminations may be made, it should be approached as community service such as for a church or civic organization. The commissioners should set forth certain rules to work toward.
- Nepotism should be avoided at all costs. The past commissioners allowed the director’s son to be hired in an oversight position as well as a sister.
- The commissioners should run county government in a fiscal conservative way as much as possible. They should avoid public employees expensive travel meetings and adhere to the plethora of modern communications, such as email, skype and transmitting of documents at a fraction of the cost, and often with a better understanding.
- While public employees are expected to be compensated, commissioners see that those employees in the aggregate should not be paid much higher than commensurate private employees. The dollar compensation alone should not be compared to private employees. Public employees sick leave, vacation, recreation and health subsidies and retirement should be compared to small business people who work numerous hours and put in their own investment and take chances in the marketplace and have to face recessions and layoffs. Buncombe County Commissioner allowed as much as $10,000 a month retirement pay, and the county director’s last salary was as much as $500,000. That is 20% more than what it paid to the President of the United States, over three (3) times the salary paid to the governor in North Carolina and five (5) times as much as is paid to the Governor of South Carolina. Clearly, those commissioners in the majority were ignoring their responsibilities and were abusing the public trust.
It is our hope that lessons have been learned.
Jerry D. Green, Chairman