Last week I covered the basics of what I am thankful for. This week I will start to get specific.
- Our new, and first, county administrator. Included in his statutory duties is responsibility for the budget; it used to be the responsibility of the finance committee. We had to meet many times, for long hours, and never did nearly as good a job as he did this year. (That's why he is called "a professional".) Last night was the county board meeting where the final budget was voted upon. Last year there was a $2 million error in the budget and one head rolled. Two years ago the meeting lasted from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and we all congratulated ourselves that it didn't go longer. Several years ago this meeting had to be held in the nearby high school auditorium to provide room for all the citizens who were irate about the budget cuts. This year? The entire meeting — including the public hearing on the budget, the budget presentation and vote, all 23 individual supervisor reports, a half-hour presentation on an entirely different subject — took a little over two hours. This man is exactly what this county needed. Thank you, Jebus.
- That the previous county board took the steps to hire an administrator.
- That the supervisors on the selection committee did such a good job during their selection process, which narrowed the field of candidates from 46 to 4.
- That one of their first steps was to propose hiring an administrator. There were several alternatives, but the one they chose seems to be working splendidly.
- That I had the good fortune to be on the board at this time and to be able to be (a very small) part of the solution.