Dear Editor: Once again I am puzzled by the actions of Rockdale’s only female Commissioner. Not because she is a woman, but by her continual inability to see the big picture. Once again, her rhetoric has served to distract from the real issue, which is the budget. Or perhaps her real aim is to put politics before the people. I am referring to her recent criticism of Chairman Oden regarding Sheriff Wiggington’s grant request.
All three Commissioners should be focused on how to pay the bills, which means that sometimes one, if not all, will have to take a stand that is not a popular one. As citizens we expect government to find ways to pay the bills and deliver more and better services to meet our growing needs and changing populations. This means that everyone’s budget, including those of other elected officials, such as the Sheriff’s, must be scrutinized with a fine-toothed comb. No matter how the pie is sliced, it is the residents who foot the bill.
The issue is not how many grants the Sheriff’s Department can get to fund additional positions. How can asking questions about what has happened to money budgeted to the Sheriff’s Department in the past, which for me is an indication of how the money will be used in this instance, be considered a personal attack? For me, the issue is very clear. How well has the Sheriff’s Department managed the resources it already has? Have all communities – especially our most vulnerable populations – been served equally well by the Sheriff’s Department, or just those who are perceived as “voters”?