Supervisors are party poopers

Published 4:03 pm Wednesday, February 19, 2020

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The recent kerfluffle by the Charlotte County Board of Supervisors over a catered dinner and a couple gift cards shows how organizations can be thrown completely off track by micromanaging bosses.

While it is a key responsibility of elected government leaders to keep a watch over the county’s finances and make sure taxpayer money is spent properly, some members of this board of supervisor’s idea of being fiscally responsible seems to be the equivalent of a family rationing toilet paper squares.

If you missed the discussion in the comments section of Facebook last week, let us catch you up. During its last meeting, the board of supervisors voted 6-1 to cut off county funds for gifts for employees, employee parties, holiday parties or employee celebrations. What a bunch of party poopers.

The new decree handed down from these esteemed leaders comes after a request from the sheriff’s office for reimbursement for a $1,275 catering bill for a retirement party for three sheriff’s department employees. There were also two gift cards of $100 and a gift card of $300 the office asked to be reimbursed.

The attempt by the sheriff’s office to recognize and thank these three employees has unfortunately been turned into a political football by the board of supervisors who, before considering a request from the school board for almost $1 million in school renovation costs, have gotten hung up on a bill for $1,775.

Instead of taking advantage of an opportunity to celebrate and send these long-time law enforcement employees off with a fond farewell, the board’s ultra-fiscal conservative paranoia has resulted in a community divided and a board that looks cheap.

Only Vice-Chairman Gary Walker, who voted against the party ban, got it right.

“We have many good, hard-working people, mostly making less than they deserve for many years, and I think a decent gift is the least we should do for them when they retire,” he said after the meeting.

The board of supervisors has basically told its employees they are not worthy of a party and a gift card when they finally decide to retire after many years of service to Charlotte County.

Hopefully the supervisors will reconsider this policy and come up with a fair and equitable way to honor retirees who dedicate their lives in service of the county.

The supervisors need to leave managing county employees to the county administrator. Micromanaging supervisors never last long enough to receive a retirement party.