WJBF interviewed Columbia County Commission Chairman Ron Cross and his challenger Jim Bartley. If anyone out there thought that Cross “gets it” or respects the people, this interview sealed the deal.
Bartley claimed, “This government has gotten more and more closed the last 10 years: commission meetings last 30 minutes….” Cross claimed, “The business is wide open, the public is invited, every committee is in the open, the votes are taken in the open.”
If everything is in the open and the public is invited, then if he was indeed truthful, how could he have not known about Kay Allen’s tax revenue incident? Tax revenue funds county government, so how could the Chairman have been so in the dark for so long? I was at a meeting open to the public, and when a man spoke to the Commission under the public comment portion, Cross constantly interrupted him and tried to silence him.
Columbia County’s per capita debt is among the highest of Georgia’s 159 counties. “…we have only borrowed 15 percent of our borrowing power,” said Cross. Cross wants to be congratulated for not maxing out the credit card.
He continues, “I don’t know how many people have bought a house and paid 100 percent for it, not many people buy a car and write a check at the time they buy it, so the debt thing is kind of a fallacy.”
Nice red herring.
The people are speaking of the $53,000,000 spent to work on a state road, the millions spent on a state patrol barracks (located where, Mr. Cross?), then, for the salt in the wound, Cross’ fervent support of TSPLOST after the GADOT was cited for four consecutive years of financial mismanagement. Cross didn’t demand answers. He wanted the bailout for his friends and donors.
Lee Benedict, Martinez