I read what Ron Cross had to say in the Sept. 25 paper (regarding consolidation), so may I respond:
1. Name on map: It doesn't take consolidation to do this; it only takes good marketing, good sense, good local management and perseverance.
2. Nothing changes: Please don't insult my integrity. Cross knows dang well that things will change on the government level. That is one of the reasons they all want it " power, plus.
3. Additional revenue: That is questionable, and if so, how would it be used and to whose advantage? This may raise some eyebrows, considering past history.
4. SPLOST: It seems to me that I have read that there is already a SPLOST controversy.
5. Prevents conflicting services: Since Mr. Cross didn't reply to this one, just remember, Martinez and Evans are not the only fish in the Sea. Growth is due to everyone at the right time and place.
6. Federal grants: Once again, this would depend on who benefits. Would it be for both the rich as well as the poor?
7. Economies of scale: Come on give us a break. They already should be keeping our county cost-efficient, without any consolidation. Are they? I think not.
8. Maintain community identity: There are many wonderful places in the county, I agree. However, county administrators, have fallen short on this subject already. Why? For lack of marketing and advertising. People don't patronize or visit what they don't know about.
Now in answer to Cross' list of negatives, that he says don't apply. Well, that is in the eyes of the reader:
1. Bigger is not better. True, logically speaking. So since Cross and county officials are having a hard time dealing with our current problems, why would they want to take on more than they can chew?
2. Costs associated: There will be a rise in something to cover the cost, meaning the fat cats just get fatter. ...
3. Bigger bureaucracy: Don't insult my integrity. They know that is what the "good ol' boys" want. A bigger, better, image. Makes them feel important.
4. City/county layoffs: They couldn't possibly know the answer to this until consolidation is in full swing. ...
5. Differences in zoning/ordinances: There is no consistency in this program, as it is. They are always trying to change zoning and ordinances. ...
6. Duplicate police: In growth, there will always be a need for more of our law enforcement. We are short now. And all of our county should be protected.
7. If it ain't broke, don't fix it: How right that statement is. We already have the "best of both worlds." We have our county, communities and cities. Let us have some peace for a change. Someone is always wanting to "uffle feathers."
So, let's don't do this for our children and grandchildren.
As you can see, I don't like change. I bought in Columbia County some 37 years ago, for many reasons. I love living in the country. ... I love the atmosphere of a small town. I hate the hustle and bustle of big cities. I have lived in both Grovetown and Harlem. ... Both Harlem and Grovetown are already two distinct cities, and I hope they remain that way. ...
But just in case this consolidation does happen. They will need a name for their new city. So to keep every one recognized and happy, here is my suggestion:
Mar, Martinez; cc, Columbia County; evan, Evans; pronounced: Mark-sea-van - Marccevan, Georgia.
All is included, so everybody should be "happy campers." Georgia has a lots of strange-named cities, so this isn't so bad.
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