Lessons in respect needed in Yadkin County

Staff Report

May 7, 2009

Respect appears to have lost its meaning and its rightful place in Yadkin County. Never has this been more evident than during recent county commissioners meetings. The situation has advanced well beyond shocking and surprising and has apparently become the accepted form of behavior by some county leaders.
There is no evidence that Chairman Wagoner seeks to control this behavior, but disgracefully joins in with condescending and weak attempts at humor that only serve to increase his arrogant persona.
The behavior exhibited by commissioners when an opinion or belief that is contrary to their own is voiced, has become juvenile and ultimately very sad. Exhibitions of eye-rolling like a teenager listening to a parents lecture, snide comments that would be expected in a disagreement between adolescents, not to mention poor attempts at humor that have the obvious intent to cause embarrassment to another commissioner or the public, result only in making the aggressor appear as immature as their words.
The county needs very strong leadership at this point. County Manager Stan Kiser has warned the commissioners that the work to develop this years budget is not going to be easy. This daunting task will require that they all work together to make decisions that are in the best interest of Yadkin County.
When a county department head makes the comment that nobody cares about what happens in the commissioners meetings, there is something seriously wrong in Yadkin County government.
This is not a time for petty competitions or political maneuvers. The county is facing debt that is staggering in an economy that is a source of trepidation to all. It is not the time to point fingers and accuse past administrations. Past is past. It is time now for county leadership to do whatever they can to work together to avoid completely devastating financially the county and its people.
One can only hope that the disgraceful behavior of Commissioner Garner and Commissioner Wagoner will not entice the others to join in with the foolish attempts to discredit instead of trying to work together to fulfill their duties as county commissioners and elected leaders of Yadkin County.
If the concerns of Commissioner Austin or Commissioner Wooten are invalid, then there should be reasonable explanations and documentation that will answer these concerns, including advice from the county attorney regarding the necessary steps to correct past mistakes.
If the concerns being raised are invalid and nothing more than a means of political idiocy, then shame on them. On May 4, Austin and Wooten provided documentation of their concerns. Why were Wagoner, Garner and Moxley not outraged to discover these discrepancies in records? Why wasnt there an immediate call for action to determine the damage instead of the sandbox-style motion by Garner to call the bank and tell them the county no longer wants the money to build a jail?
Commissioner Moxley should be commended for his valid questions regarding concerns on May 4, and his personal fortitude to avoid joining in the juvenile ridicule.
Whether the respect exhibited by commissioners toward one another as well as toward the public the board serves is sincere or not, there should at the very least be a concerted effort by all five commissioners to show respect whether or not it is a personal sentiment, because every commissioner on the board was duly elected by the people of Yadkin County.
Its time to stand up, gentlemen. The people of Yadkin County need strong leadership right now, leaders that are acting in the best interest of the county as a whole. The election is over, get on with the business of running the county and show some respect doing it.