‘Mr. Glennie, temper your approach’  

I would like to respond to last week’s comments by Mr. [Page] Glennie [“It’s our county,” March 23] in regards to the performance of several of our county employee’s indicating possible criminal behavior.

I am amazed at how someone, in an effort to promote his own agenda, would take an effort by a dedicated county employee to come up with a way to provide our volunteer fire and rescue departments with a needed piece of equipment to be used to provide access to people in need of emergency services. These folks can’t deal with a situation they can’t get to. This action will benefit our county.

What appears to have happened is the equipment was available though defense department surplus at a very cheap price, but the sales have to be to government bodies. Private individuals in the county were willing to provide the funding, but it had to be funneled through the county government. In the end, no tax dollars would be used. It falls into the category of “working the system”, which happens all the time.

The plan was OK’d by our previous county manager and there was no effort to keep it a secret. We’re talking about less than $7500.

Was the plan illegal? Not really. Were those involved trying to pull off some grandiose misappropriation of funds? Would the federal government really care if their process was not followed to the “T”?

Perhaps it might have been better to follow a different route to obtain the equipment, but they didn’t, and remember we’re talking $7500.

So what are the consequences of Mr. Glennie’s accusations? We are, prematurely, losing the services of a long time dedicated employee. He will need to be replaced by at least two new employees who may lack the wisdom and experience of their predecessor and cost the taxpayers additional funds.

We are not a perfect county and we are experiencing growing pains. We have numerous problems that need to be solved, but we won’t make things any better by throwing rocks.

Mr. Glennie loves Rappahannock, just like the rest of us. But please, Mr. Glennie, temper your approach and actions to a way that that will bring about positive change that we all can feel good about.

Ron Makela

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