LETTER: require county leaders to show up
Laurens County Council met for their regularly scheduled meeting on April 24th which included the first reading of the budget for fiscal year 2019. But not all council members were present for the meeting.
At the meeting, council approved a 2.55% millage increase which is a 2.13% CPI based COLA and .42% population millage increase. Additionally, county council is considering an increase to the solid waste fee. The vote on the millage increase was approved by a vote of 3-2, with Jones and Pitts opposing it and two members not present, Nash and Tollison. Attendance matters.
Nash was not in attendance for health reasons. Tollison’s absence is nothing new.
Councilman Tollison’s absenteeism is the most consistent thing he has done. That’s right, not showing up is what he does, consistently. Just this year, he has missed 5 of the 8 meetings and that doesn’t speak to the countless meetings he missed in prior years.
Some meetings may seem more important than others but presence at all meetings should be a priority of council members. When one person is regularly absent it creates several problems. First, there is an ongoing responsibility to represent those whom elected you. Second, once elected, all council members have a responsibility to the county as a whole, to be informed and participate in all aspects of the process and make informed decisions in the best interest of the county.
Being a member of County Council is a paid position elected by the people. If one is elected to the position, there is an inherent responsibility to show up and do the job. If you have an attendance record of about 50% at your job, would you even have a job? Probably not.
Despite excessive absences and repeated assurances that his work travel would subside, Tollison continues to “not show up” as a council member but is running for re-election.
But this time is different. There are other candidates on the ballot and it is time for a change. The county needs someone who will show up to do the work of Laurens County.
Showing up in life matters and on County Council.
(Note: No political letters related to the June 12 Primary will be accepted after May 25, for publication in the May 30 issue. - Editor)