More representation is needed
To the Editor:
As a part-time resident of Houston County with hopes of living here full-time, I love this place called Bluff Country. With my love for this area comes compassion and caring.
Without a doubt the issue of frac sand mining in Houston County is an historic issue. The 12-month moratorium that has been put into place should be a time for issues to be raised, a time for questions to be answered, a time for data to be gathered and analyzed all in the name of making intelligent decisions for what’s in the best interest of the citizens of Houston County.
Here’s the issue. A frac sand mining committee will be formed to spearhead this key issue. I got the impression that this committee will be the “heartbeat” of the direction frac sand mining will take in Houston County. How will this committee be formed? It was stated by the Chairman of the Board of Commissioners that people from the county will be picked, hand selected from both sides of the issue. What dangerous water to tread with this historic issue. What logic is being used here?
By personal contact I further learned that the day following the frac sand mining informational session that Justin Zmyewski District #2 commissioner proposed that a democratic process be used in forming a
“committee” regarding frac sand mining. Justin’s proposal was to have a committee that included an elected representative from each of the 17 township boards in the county so as not to be hand picking committee members. Truly, a representation from the voice of the people throughout the county. As this would be a larger group Justin gave the example of having a smaller “task force,” a sub-committee so to speak, from within the large group to be the “working core.” The smaller “task force” would be voted on by the larger committee to be the “working core.” The smaller group would meet on a more frequent basis than the larger group. The “task force” would report back to the entire committee. A logical proposal.
With no support for Justin’s
“logical proposal” the board of commissioners is moving forward with the handpicked selection of committee members. We as citizens of Houston County should be “mad as hell.” Who’s picking? Why was that person or persons selected as a picker? What are the qualifications of those being picked? Why were you not picked? Was it open to the entire citizenship of Houston County to toss their name in the hat for picking? Is my township being represented? What about the inevitable bias of the picker or pickers?
Here’s a chance for the county to take on an issue which will go down as an historic one and it’s already getting off on the wrong foot. No matter what side of frac sand mining you are on it’s obvious that the way this committee is being formed isn’t right. Ignoring the obvious isn’t ignorance, it’s irresponsibility.