The Greene County Board of Supervisors claims that one of their priorities is “schools,” but ignores at the same time the fact that students are left behind for lack of broadband in Greene County. The Economic Development Authority is pursuing USDA loans for a new visitor center (“glorified brochure racks and toilets”), but not internet grants. In “Greene County, Home of two mountain dynasties: Shifflett and Morris,” one can read that “For more than 50 years, the 20th century bypassed Greene County.”
This was written in 1984 and it’s still true 35 years later in the 21st century. Neighboring counties are moving and implementing broadband (we are not), neighboring counties (Orange, Madison, Louisa, etc.) have a lower tax rate (what do they do that our experts don’t?), while our EDA does not appear at the same time to be very successful in relocating new businesses in Greene County. It is amateur hour in Greene County.
With a Code of Ethics in place, the professional and personal conduct of officials, whether elected or appointed, would have to be above reproach. The Board of Supervisors would not turn a blind eye on the unethical behavior of some of its members. Presumption of innocence is one thing, but taking a leave of absence is always the right thing to do. With a Code of Ethics, the so-called “recusal” of the owner of this $1 million brick building would be dismissed for what it is: a dog-and-pony show. This building, abandoned for years, has now become in the last five months the ultimate best spot of all Greene County. Why ? Who benefits?
Who knows what tourism will be in 40 years? No one knows. Who knew 20 years ago that Internet would become an essential part of our lives? Very few.
The line of ethics has been crossed for an acquisition that is totally inappropriate and reprehensible. It is cronyism at its worst. It smells badly in a world where perception often becomes reality. “Facts are stubborn things and whatever may be our wishes,...they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.” (John Adams).