The Nacilbupera Guzzle

Whoever examines with attention the history of the dearths and famines … will find, I believe, that a dearth never has arisen from any combination among the inland dealers in corn, nor from any other cause but a real scarcity, occasioned sometimes perhaps, and in some particular places, by the waste of war, but in by far the greatest number of cases by the fault of the seasons; and that a famine has never arisen from any other cause but the violence of government attempting, by improper means, to remedy the inconveniences of a dearth. (Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations IV.5.44)

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Utah County Commissioner Mtng Attendance

This morning we attended our first ever Utah County Commissioner's Meeting. Since becoming a county delegate we figured it was our duty to go check out our elected Commissioners in action and see if things were running properly and now that the convention is over, we had a bit more time to do so.

Utah County is made up of three County Commissioners who meet Tuesday mornings at 9am. We're rather astonished that the meeting is at 9am when we like many are scheduled to work. Provo has its city council meetings at 7pm when we are more able to attend. We might be able to fathom the 9am meeting time if the meeting were rebroadcast: but there is no rebroadcast of Utah County Commissioner Meetings! We discovered the only venue currently available to citizens of the County for meeting review are agenda meeting notes posted online up to two weeks later after the meeting has taken place. In other words, the review-ability for our elected Commissioners is grossly deficient: THIS MUST BE FIXED!

At today's meeting, Commissioner Anderson was excused for health reasons and Commissioners White and Ellertson reviewed a rather non-controversial agenda approving all the items 2-0. Items of interest included Health Dept Director Miner talking about a aerial mosquito abatement program, a discussion on the Jordan River Commission to have the 18 jurisdictions split a $100K bill making the river a showcase for the state, and Richard Nance presenting the results of the clean-out-the-cabinet prescription drug reclamation of nearly 900 pounds of medication (see detailed Deseret News article).

The meeting also prompted us to chronicle the attendance of our elected officials at these meetings. Below is a spreadsheet using data extracted from the official minutes of the County Commissioner meetings for 2010 (for any corrections plz comment below or see our profile for email address):

From this data we gather the following interesting conclusions:

  • Our County Commissioners all have superb attendance at these meetings. This is really crucial as there are only 3 to conduct business
  • Joel Wright and Leon Frazier were the only two Commissioner candidates to have attended ANY Commissioner meeting in 2010. We were flabbergasted that Doug Witney had yet to attend any meeting yet was able to knock out the incumbent Steve White at Saturday's convention. We wonder if this glaring absence continues how in November either Republican Witney or Democrat Barratt are going to have any clue on what the issues are or of a smooth transition. We didn't see either at today's meeting nor was Mr. Wright present. We feel it unreasonable to expect perfect attendance during a campaign for a candidate running for County Commissioner, while we do expect some attendance.
  • Our elected County Officials appear to be attending as they are able. We feel that all of our elected officials should be making periodic appearances whenever available at our County Commissioner meetings. We also feel there will be times when then have pressing conflicts and should not be viewed as having to attend every meeting. Furthermore, some positions may merit more frequent attendance than others. We feel all the current elected county officials are doing due diligence.

We plan on keeping track of and periodically disclose attendance at the County Commissioner Meeting as a way of doing our patriotic part to keep check on our government.


Joel Wright said...

Great insight in the blog above. Another interesting point is that the open public comment period is at the END of the meeting. So, after the Commissioners have conducted all their business, then they listen to the general public input. So wrong. If elected, I would put the general public input at the beginning of every meeting, so we can listen to the public input before making our decisions. I would also stream all County Commission meetings live over the Internet, and have them all available for live viewing after the fact as well. Right now the County Commissioners have limited, if any, engagement with the public. Not good.

Joel Wright said...

I blog on Utah County Commission issues on a fairly regular basis. You are welcome to follow my blog here:

nick said...

There you go again Joel - blowing wind up your own skirt. Searching for your name on the web, and then posting comment after comment. Do you need some attention or what? #fail