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LETTER: Our county government in action

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In the movie “Cool Hand Luke,” the warden said, “What we have here is a failure to communicate.” I think that our Fiscal Court judge is guilty of just that. The magistrates are in the dark as to what the judge is doing concerning Spencer County’s affairs. At some point, this had to come to a head as all infections do.
I am very disappointed with Judge-Executive Bill Karrer’s performance so far. I believe he has the county’s good interest at heart, but I was expecting better of him in the way of management and cooperation. If you can’t trust your Fiscal Court judge to share what he is doing with the magistrates, then there is a real problem, and if the judge can’t trust the magistrates, then it is very serious. I have a high respect for all the magistrates and think they are capable of being trusted with the county’s business and, to date, they are doing a fine job.
I think the Fiscal Court judge should keep the magistrates up to date on everything he is doing. It’s not a one man show, it’s a court of six people managing the county’s business. Is Judge Karrer afraid that if the magistrates know what he is doing they will be upset? Well, at the last Monday night fiscal court meeting they showed their wrath and disappointment. In my opinion, Bill Karrer has lost the respect of the magistrates and their willingness to support him, and whose fault is that?
I believe Sheriff Buddy Stump and his deputies have done an excellent job at policing the county, but his arrogant disrespect of the Kentucky State Police does not sit well with me. If the sheriff wants to police the county with his deputies on their own, then do it, but don’t denigrate the KSP, just do it on your own. Don’t expect any help from any outside law enforcement agency when you attack their integrity. The sheriff soon will have a radio system that can be encrypted to isolate transmissions and with that he can be hidden from any monitoring by other police or citizens. Good luck, sheriff, but your deputies may not like that if they need help.
The magistrates voted down Judge Karrer and the sheriff’s attempt to change the 911 dispatching from the KSP to Nelson County. Whether a change was a good move or not will never be known because the whole business of the change was poorly handled with the magistrates in the dark. The KSP 911 service said the Spencer County Sheriff’s Department was getting all calls first and the sheriff said otherwise.
It’s not my job to determine where the truth lies, but at this point I tend to side with the KSP. It’s just a gut feeling and nothing more at this point. Also, why does the sheriff’s department need Humvees, two deuce and a half  trucks and a fuel tanker? Even though they were free from the government, why do we need them? Will we also need a battle tank and armored personnel carrier with quad .50’s to defend the county against attack? Does the sheriff know something we don’t or should? Is there some nefarious plan to take over Spencer County? Who are the aggressors?
I am fearful that Spencer County may suffer from some of the things that are going on in fiscal court and the sheriff’s department. I am glad the magistrates finally got the courage to stand up and be counted. Perhaps it’s time for the magistrates to demand to be informed as to the daily doings of the judge by email or phone. I know if I were a magistrate and came to the Fiscal Court meeting and got blind-sided by something I would be very upset. It’s time for a change for the good, and teamwork to start, now.
After the past few months of shenanigans I am, more than ever, desirous of seeing Spencer County go to a charter county form of government. The changes in the Kentucky Revised Statutes about charter government go into effect on Jan. 1, 2013, so after that date we may see some movement in that direction.  With Taylorsville and Spencer County constantly bickering, we will get little help from the Commonwealth. The Commonwealth is desirous of all counties going with a charter form so they can deal with one government in each county. The question is, will the citizens of our county see the light?

Carl Darnell
Taylorsville