According to Supervisor Mills, some outsiders view our county government as being dysfunctional, and he wanted to remedy that perception. In the same statement, however, he denigrated the staff in public, as did Supervisor Clapp, who even suggested in public that people need to be fired.

I would suggest that if the government is dysfunctional, the problem and responsibility lies with the board.

I would also suggest that there is, in fact, dysfunction, but it is with the Board of Supervisors that seems incapable of even being civil to the people they serve, not to mention county employees. I do not condone rude behavior, even if deserved, but elected officials who cannot live with public abuse need to find another hobby.

What I have observed is the Board of Supervisors is acting as five different entities instead of as one group whose purpose is to serve the needs of the county. Using Supervisor Mills as an example, he has stated that his position on cannabis is based on his constituents who voted him into office.

In other words, his vote will depend on what his constituents think, regardless of the merits of the issue or how it affects the county. A supervisor does indeed represent his or her district, but only in the context of the greater good of the county.

This is a difficult concept for some people to understand and a tight rope for an elected official who wants to be re-elected, but the districts are integral parts of the whole. Without the whole, the parts don’t exist.

It is not unusual for a city council, board of supervisors or any committee to be dysfunctional due to a variety of reasons and, in my opinion, our Board of Supervisors is at the moment totally dysfunctional on any number of counts. In some ways, this dysfunction explains the deep divisions between the citizenry of this county and perhaps our inability to be civil among ourselves.

Edward Neal

West Point

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