Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Ye shall know them by their fruits

GREENSBORO, NC -- I'm inclined to agree with Rhino Times editor John Hammer when he writes: "Council seems fine with building a huge wall between government and the people."

Why? Because of council's actions—or rather, their inaction. They are taking no action to participate in or make the public partners in the changes underway to the City's public records procedures. It's just not that important to this Council.

Trees are important. Council formed a subcommittee to examine the tree cutting ordinance.

Substandard housing is important. There is a subcommittee for housing. 

There is a subcommittee for economic development and one for downtown entertainment facilities.

Mayor Robbie Perkins now wants to form a subcommittee to accommodate the interest of "young professionals" in influencing downtown. 

When an important issue needs a sustained effort with everybody at the table, council forms a subcommittee.

They will not do so for public records. Transparency and openness—and the accountability they bring—are bedrocks, fundamentals without which everything else is in jeopardy, yet City staff have been behind closed doors for seven weeks crafting new policies that clamp down on access to public records that they only now want to "explain" to the public with a day of meetings. These meetings are not to collaborate, but to give the imprimatur of legitimacy to a one-way, top down, exclusive process.

By their inaction, Council approves.

As the Bible says, "Ye shall know them by their fruits," and lip service on transparency and openness are not going to cut it in the next election.

2 comments:

Eric said...

Or it could be that they do not want YOU to be involved as you may be considered "a lightning rod" for righteousness. All you are good for, is to bring the problem out in the open, start the dialogue and sacrifice countless hours lobbying/blogging for the right thing to do...God forbids you are part of the solution as you may know too much and could actually make a real difference in making our city better. I feel your frustration on many levels. I thought your presentation was direct, well conceived and necessary...Council's resistance to your involvement is telling ..next time ask the young professionals to make the request for you...

Billy Jones said...

Ah yes, the young professionals will solve it all with their backing from the same old white men who run our city now....

There is something here they don't want us to know-- something even bigger than the names of a few confidential informants. What it is I can't say but it's hidden there somewhere.

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