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Correct decision made on chair
The Whidbey News-Times editorial Nov. 8 criticizes commissioners Homola and Price Johnson for choosing Price Johnson to be the commission chair next year. The public comments orchestrated by the Tea Party Republicans at the Nov. 21 board meeting make it pretty clear that they will try to make the case that Emerson was treated unfairly. In spite of all the noise, commissioners Price Johnson and Homola made a sound decision.
The editorial argues that Commissioner Emerson was entitled to serve as chair next year. But Emerson’s record over the last year shows that she doesn’t measure up to the job. Although I often disagreed with the policies of former Republican commissioners MacDowell, Shelton, Byrd and Bakke, they were devoted public servants who worked hard and believed they were doing the right thing. Commissioner Emerson has not met even that standard of professionalism. And, frankly, she just hasn’t made much of an effort.
Emerson’s lawsuit against the county and her unresolved regulatory issues (building without a permit) are justifications enough to disqualify her from taking over the chair’s job. But the clincher is that Emerson has repeatedly demonstrated contempt for the government that she represents and the taxpayers who pay her salary. Although it might have been politically shrewd for commissioners Homola and Price Johnson to let her take the chair’s seat and make a fool of herself, it would have been irresponsible for them to do so.
They are completely justified in transferring the role to Commissioner Price Johnson.