Oh No, Here We Go Again

You may remember, last year after long time Lenoir City Treasurer/Recorder Debbie Cook resigned, Mayor Matt Brookshire and others determined to eliminate the elected position of  City Treasurer/Recorder and replace it with a City Council appointed person. Problem was, it would take a change in the city's charter to change the elected position to an appointed one. Ultimately, city officials found out that a charter change referendum could not be included on the February ballot.

Well, it's back. Thursday night, the Charter Review Committee meet to once again discuss the possibility of eliminating the elected position. A new opinion from the Attorney General's office clears the way for the question to be on the August ballot if council votes to place it on the ballot.

There are those in city government who feel that an elected Treasurer/Recorder is a problem in that, as an elected official the council nor the city administrator or mayor have no control over the office. They feel that as an appointed position they could better manage or manipulate the office. Those in favor of changing the position to appointed are claiming that if the council were in charge of appointing the person who would be in charge of all the city's money, they would be able to pick a more competent person for the job than the voters.

Eliminating the democratic process and taking away the voters right to choose is just down right un-American. The same argument for eliminating the elected Treasurer/Recorder position could also be made for eliminating the elected mayor's position. Maybe council could do a better job of picking a mayor than the voters. 

It may be important that the person who is Treasurer/Recorder have certain abilities and background that would allow them to manage the city's finances in a competent and efficient manner. So if those who wish to take away the voter's right to choose were really interested in having a qualified person in the position, why not just change the charter to require certain qualifications on those seeking the office of Treasurer/Recorder and leave it as an elected position.

After all, who would you rather have choosing the person handling millions of dollars for the city? Three thousand voters or three city councilmen? The decision may be yours.