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Hall County needs a long-term vision

POSTED: June 23, 2011 1:00 a.m.

We have had several public meetings at various locations across the county. I think the consensus is that a public uproar has occurred. I think I can speak for everyone that reads this commentary.

No one wants to see the taxpayers' burden, parks and libraries closed, employee sacrifices and the loss of two ambulances. I think the real danger is all members of the board knew this information was going to be released and the resulting firestorm that would take place. They have known about this pending economic downturn for several years and yet failed to pay attention.

We are now using $1.4 million of fund balance, which is like spending money out of your savings account. I think they have focused the public attention on this firestorm while avoiding their own accountability. You look at some of the decisions that were made in prior years and you combine that with a budget that is a simple band-aid approach makes for a very dismal future.

But we have to have a spirit of compromise. You have factions on the board that are fueling the uproar. In my spirit of compromise, I will support raising property taxes enough so that no one gets hurt. We keep our libraries, parks and our two ambulances and the sanity of dedicated county employees.

Now let's get on to the idea of solutions. I have yet to hear any commissioner or other elected official for that matter place ideas on the table. In the remaining two weeks, the solutions are unachievable such as privatizing. Sounds great in public, but as an effective solution during this next two weeks is a pipe dream.

I call on our community to see through this facade. I ask our community to develop a sense of compromise. There are solutions. I have my own in mind, but I want to see what the commissioners and our other elected officials propose.

David Williams
Gainesville



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