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Public service should not mean self-service

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By Donald Richie

On Monday morning, I turned in my notice to resign as news writer here at The Cynthiana Democrat.

Next Friday, Nov. 21, will be my last day.

It was a hard decision, I love this job and the people I’ve worked with over the past five (well, almost five) years. But as my downtown studio grows, I find balancing the two jobs impossible.

The people of Cynthiana have responded well to my work and I’m not able to serve them to my best ability with things as they have been.

I’ll still be around, though, at ball games and maybe from time to time on this page.

OK, enough mushy stuff, I’m really writing to challenge my fellow Cynthiana residents: Look to my example and ask your leaders to make the same difficult choices.

On Tuesday, the city commission passed first reading to annex property on Ky. 36 East (Millersburg Pike), including a home owned by the mayor.

A kindergarten student can read between the lines on this one.

The mayor bought a house outside city limits. If he makes it his official residence, he can’t continue as mayor. So, the commission all of a sudden thinks its important to annex these tracts, even though some of them have been developed for 20 or so years?

This is where that backbone people want to see comes in. Just over a week ago, two commissioners were re-elected even though there were eight choices for the commission’s four spots.

Gerrymandering a few pieces of property to benefit the mayor is not the best way to assure the people they made the right choices on Nov. 4.

He made his choice when he bought the house and that choice was to move outside city limits.

If this annexation is approved, it will reinforce the belief that ‘good ole boys’ politics is alive and well in Cynthiana. It will also tell people that the rules can be changed at a whim to unfairly benefit one person.

I’m sure there are arguments to be made in favor of annexation, but that’s not the point.

Again, if it’s so important, why wasn’t it done before now? Personally, I don’t believe in such coincidences.

So, my call to you, Cynthianans, is to make sure the four commissioners understand that this is more than a simple issue of annexation.

This is an example of how so-called ‘team playing’ does nothing to help the citizens and everything to help one person.

Simply put, tell them to vote no on the second reading at the next city commission meeting. That would stop the problem in its tracks.

I’ve spent nearly five years issuing challenges from this page which have largely been unmet.

This time, since it’s my last time, step up and make me proud.

There, I said it.