Whatever our politics, we can probably agree we’re not getting much from Washington, D.C., or Richmond these days. We need to look to ourselves, especially now. Our Greene County government is key to getting things done and to making our lives better. It should not be an afterthought … it’s the ball game if we want a great place to live.

Our local government people need to understand our community, apply common sense and creativity to problems, get things done and be competent about it. To make Greene safe, affordable, fair and pretty, we need good local governance.

We’re not getting it.

Our Board of Supervisors struggles with decisions, simple or complicated, and frequently makes bad and expensive ones; for example, the reservoir and the tourist center. There are serious issues of competence, too, witness the budgeting disaster now costing every Greene taxpayer a lot more in property taxes all at once. The continuing saga of legal charges swirling around members and their admin people doesn’t give us confidence in their behavior. And the board is not really interested in citizens questioning them. The gods sit on their platform and we peasants get three minutes to speak.

Our sheriff is a good guy, but he’s lost his way after eight years. He’s squabbling with pretty much all of county government, from emergency services to the board. He even sued the board. All that is nonsense. A good leader gets the best from those around him. That’s not happening with our sheriff. There are also worrying stories about response to citizens in danger and a strong smell of “My Turf” surrounding the department. Whatever happened to “Citizens First?”

Our emergency services people do a wonderful job, bless them, but their equipment is old. They need resources. They also need cooperation from the sheriff’s department. They’re not getting either. Nonsense again.

We can do better. Our Greene government can be first-class, serving us well and with a smile.

It’s time for changes. The November elections are our chance. We need new board members, and we need a new Sheriff.

Roy Barbee


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