In my opinion, the Whitley County 911 Board made a rather lame attempt at trying to rewrite history at its January meeting.
Let me explain.
Last November, the board voted unanimously to demote an employee. An audio recording of the meeting confirms this. No one on the board ever utters a word against the measure. Fast forward to Jan. 9 of this year — the board’s most recent regular meeting.
Outgoing 911 Director Chuck Davis and Whitley County Treasurer Jeff Gray, both of who attended November’s meeting, informed the board that the minutes from that meeting in Nov. are erroneous and need to be altered to reflect that they actually ABSTAINED from voting on the measure.
I call bull!
This is just totally dishonest.
I’ve never, EVER, attended a meeting where someone abstained from voting on a measure, but didn’t have the guts to speak up and say so. This would be highly irregular.
Two things here.
Giving both Gray and Davis the benefit of the doubt, let’s suppose for a moment that they sat there at the meeting … meekly silent whilst their fellow board members voted. It’s possible. I don’t believe that, but whatever. Even if true … I mean really … that’s sort of a pathetic way to do things, isn’t it?
And several of the board members that attended January’s meeting weren’t even present at November’s meeting, so why the heck are they approving changes to the minutes?
They should know better.
We don’t need wet dishrags with no backbone on important boards that won’t speak up or who just approve things without thinking them through. We need whip-smart people who can articulate what needs to be done and supply leadership.
We don’t need people on our 911 Board who are sailing adrift in the political winds.
And we sure the heck don’t need cynical, unethical attempts to change the record of an official meeting for a board that oversees a very important taxpayer-funded, government operation.
Perhaps this issue is a small thing that probably won’t matter to most. Big deal, right?
Well, it sets a terrible precedent.
Minutes are the only records that usually survive to tell us what our public officials have done in the past. Those, and media reports. They need to be accurate. They need to reflect the truth. Not be peppered with fabrications and balloon juice.
The minutes in question show what I consider an altered version of reality. A skewed view of things. This won’t work.
I’ll offer this space, without rebuttal, to anyone involved with the 911 Board who wishes to explain away what has happened a OK and justifiable. But know this … if you do, I’ll simply supply the audio recordings of both meetings for the public to listen to via the News Journal website so everyone can hear it and make up their own minds.
The offer is on the table, if there are any takers.
What really needs to happen is the 911 Board needs to make things right. Conduct only roll call votes from now on to discourage any sneakiness. And at the next meeting, the alterations to the minutes need to be undone. Board members, if they wish, can make a statement saying they should have abstained from voting or perhaps call for a vote to reconsider the action taken last November. Then they can vote their conscious and make everything clean and straight.
Absent that, what exists now is a tainted historical record.
Things like this erode trust and serve as fertilizer for conspiracy theories.
I very much like the people who serve on this board. They know right from wrong. So fix it. Do the right thing!