|the most recent discussions on potential revenue sources for ECSO were condescendingly called "limp-wristed, disingenuous entreaties" by our sheriff...|
Tuesday morning at the committee of the whole, I brought forward some ideas that could help address our budget impasse with the sheriff. I brought these idea(s) in good faith, in a spirit of cooperation and compromise. Having deferred my item to the end of the meeting, the commissioners were fatigued and several had to leave to make other engagements. I totally get that and I appreciated the discussions with the individual commissioners about each aspect of the Blue Penny plan --despite the late hour at the end of the workshop..
Within the discussions, though, I found several areas of plausible common ground between myself and my counterparts as it relates to a potential offer that might be presented to the sheriff. (translation: I think there may be 3-4 areas of the plan for which I could get three (3) votes)
So next month, at our January Committee of the Whole, I will bring a document that reduces these items where I perceive potential agreement into a draft agreement. I don't want to sound like a broken record here--but there are areas where a compromise can be brokered among the commissioners; I have the information--from these discussions at the tail end of Tuesday's COW. I simply need to write an agreement. Which I will do.
Such an agreement would serve as a starting place for a larger discussion on the sheriff's budget---because as everyone knows, the Governor and his cabinet are not in the business of solving our problems and we should be proactive in moving forward in our continuing effort to show good faith in the process. The appeal process is meant to be, and designed to be, a method to compel mediation of these disputes between the parties. This is why only 3 of these appeals have gone all the way to the Governor in the last 30 years.
Meanwhile, disappointingly but not surprisingly, the BCC discussions on brokering a compromise were mocked yesterday on the radio by the sheriff. at minute 10:00 of the interview from WCOA yesterday, the sheriff characterizes proposals to increase his budget funding as "limp-wristed, dis-
ingenuous entreaties." This is not surprising but it's shocking; sadly, though, this is simply more of the same: ad hominem, condescending, personal attacks made by the sheriff against those of us
working toward a solution. It's bad enough to be called a bullshit artist by the sheriff, told I can't hear, can't read, can't find the nose on my face, that we're liars, etc. etc. Nope, now these attacks are hitting a new all-time low. Now it's decompensating into homophobic, demeaning slurs. The BCC is being called limp-wristed ??" He should apologize to the listeners and to the BCC for saying that.
But it's easier to duck, deflect, and call names than it is to deal with facts. The name-calling histrionics distracts from the specifics during a debate over an issue....So let me be perfectly clear:
1. I've said all along the fifth cent requires legislative changes--it does and I said that from the start.
2. I also stated that the starting place for a fixed budget would be the ending point, the final number from the FY 2017-2018 budget year--which sheriff knows is not yet finalized (we will either settle on that amount or the governor will set it) and finally
3. --he did not address two important components of the plan: Does he want us to return 50% of his year-end unexpended funds? Would that help? Would he welcome a 100% match of BCC money to all eligible expenditures up to $350K yearly from LETF to offset the SRO program? (translation--this would free up to $700K yearly for the ECSO to address payscale issues)? How about addressing these two items, these two we could implement easily, quickly and locally and produce $800K yearly RIGHT NOW!
Instead, he does not address these aspects of the plan and stays on the attack--characterizing our movement toward compromise as "limp-wristed, disingenuous entreaties"
But the continuous attacks are getting old.....
I know there are pent-up frustrations that may be contributing to these non-stop, personal attacks. But I'd simply say--don't take these out on us. It is not our fault you got into a heated shouting match with the Secret Service at the Bay Center at the Trump rally and you were told you could not bring your gun into the arena--that you had to take it to the car. I know that was probably very humiliating and humbling and embarrassing to be told by 2 secret service agents, in front of multiple persons "we don't care if you're the sheriff of this county: you either take that gun to your car and you can come back inside with an empty holster--or you can leave!"--but that's not the BCC's fault. Don't take that out on us. We don't have any control over the level of support you provide to the secret service (or don't provide) and we didn't create that mess, and we didn't tell you to leave--they did.
So meanwhile--I'm looking forward to solving the problem--not genuflecting or capitulating. I don't do that. I work for rational, fair compromises that move the needle.
I'm told the sheriff will be gone in a few years, that he is a lame duck office-holder that has personally proclaimed he will not seek re-election; meanwhile, there are many mid-level personnel at the ECSO who appreciate our willingness to work toward a compromise to improve pay and create new revenue streams for the ECSO. I spoke recently with just such an employee--- and this ECSO employee expressed this thanks to me personally for my efforts! So I'm going to continue to work to do what I can to help the deputies despite the attacks from their boss. Those men will still be here when this current administration is gone. The men of the ECSO deserve our best--- not these attacks that stymie progress.
Next up, hopefully, a compromise proposal I'm working on this January that can garner 3 votes at the BCC and be moved forward to the sheriff. Then the ball will be in his court and we will see what happens then.