Officials must act like adults

Published 9:43 am Friday, September 11, 2009

School is back in session and it appears that some of Lawrence County’s elected officials are getting into the spirit by acting like children.

That is exactly what Lawrence County Commissioners Jason Stephens and Doug Malone and county engineer David Lynd are acting like when it comes to a dispute over road paving on the eastern end of the county.

Rather than sitting down like adults and discussing the concerns rationally and reasonably, both sides have resorted to elementary school tactics of “taking my ball and going home” or “I’ll just ignore you.”

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Lynd deserves more blame because he essentially has refused to meet with county commissioners to discuss residents’ concerns with his plan to replace a blacktop road with a chip-and-seal repair job. Lynd was asked to attend both the Tuesday and Wednesday meetings and couldn’t be bothered to walk up stairs or make the time.

This is just icing on the cake for an elected official who has a reputation for being non-responsive to the public and unwilling to discuss his decision making when it comes to road projects.

But the two commissioners aren’t much higher on the juvenile scale after they voted to decertify Lynd’s funds for supplies, equipment and contracts.

Sounds like a good way to send a message, huh? It isn’t and is just political grandstanding.

You know why? Because this does nothing to address the salaries and we have a good feeling that Lynd won’t be keeping anyone home. So, if this impasse lasts long, the taxpayers will be paying for people to sit around and do nothing.

Plus, this move essentially halts work on several other county road projects if this continues, making a variety of residents suffer over this clash.

We expect a lot from our elected officials, sometimes even too much. But we certainly expect them to act like adults who know how to communicate.