Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 7, 2000

Newspaper was right to oppose county commission’s shenanigans

The Troy Messenger is to be commended for its courageous news coverage and editorial about the recent shenanigans of Pike County Commissioners who cast secret ballots in a public meeting. The public depends on news reporters to monitor and report what goes on in public meetings.

Apparently, our commissioners have a total disregard for the public’s right to know. Those rights include information about how lelected officials, including countycommissioners, vote on a particular issue. The decision to hire a new Emergency Management Agency director for Pike County wouldn’t appear to be that controversial – unless commissioners have something to hide. Otherwise, wouldn’t they simply vote for the most qualified candidate for the job?

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There are two possible answers to that question. One is that commissioners aren’t qualified to make that decision; or Two, they think we don’t deserve to know how they voted – which is a violation of the state’s sunshine law. Either way, Pike County citizens lose.

How arrogant of the commissioners and their legal counsel who stood by and didn’t advise them of the possible violation they were committing to think that we don’t care how they vote or don’t deserve to know. They have trampled on one of our most basic rights and citizens should be outraged.

Thanks again to your staff for reporting on this scandalous behavior. I can’t help but wonder what other items these commissioners have hidden from us. I am hopeful that voters will remember this injustice next time these commissioners run for office.

Debra Davis


March 6, 2000 10 PM  

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