Our county commissioners were wise to heed the advice of constituents who encouraged them not to appointment themselves to the citizens committee being formed to forge a new and better plan for processing and housing local prisoners. The participation of the commissioners on the committee would have created an intimidating presence as citizens begin essentially at square one to understand the current situation and consider all options in pursuit of the most economically responsible solution.
Frankly, we’re surprised—and encouraged—that at least 20 people have stepped forward as possible committee members. We trust the selection process will be representative of the constituency, and we look forward to seeing what the committee will recommend to the commission by the time their work is completed.
Our hope is that they will propose a minimal investment of public money in facilities and protect the business environment of Marion County from a harmful sales-tax increase. Challenging economic times require creative and courageous alternatives. —DR