A sad study in rude behavior at Supervisors meeting

The Supervisor meeting Wednesday night.
The Supervisor meeting Wednesday night.

I’ve attended — and covered as a reporter — virtually every meeting of the Floyd County Board of Supervisors for the last five plus years but the shameful display of some of the 27 people who attended Wednesday night’s budget session was — without a doubt — the most disgusting  and rude behavior I have witnessed at any gathering of citizens in the county.

Some members of the crowd — most of whom identified themselves as members of the Floyd County tea party — talked loudly among themselves during the meeting, making it difficult for others in the audience to hear what the board was saying as they deliberated the tax rates for the coming fiscal year.  They showed no consideration for others who attended the meeting to actually see and hear what their elected officials would do.

After several failed votes, the Supervisors finally approved tax rates for the coming year that includes a three-cent hike in real estate taxes (to 50 cents per $100 in assessed valuation) and a 25-cent increase in personal property taxes (to $2.95 per $100).  The board had earlier recommended a hike of five cents on real estate and a whopping 75 cents in personal property.

The board also took the unprecedented step of assuming more control over the school system budget that eats up about 80 percent of the county expenditures each year.

Even though members of the audience had a chance to speak during the 35-minute public comment period, the conversations between some continued as the supervisors debated the audience.  In the middle of this incredible study in rudeness was Floyd County Republican Party official Bob Smith and local activist Joe Montague but they weren’t the only ones.

Their behavior was a disgusting example of the breakdown of civility that has accompanied the rise of activist groups like the tea party and an indicator of how political activism has become more about disruption than reasoned debate.  Some members of the group hurled comments at the board during deliberations and mocked the comments of some board members with exaggerated stage whispers.

Such behavior does not belong in public gatherings and those who engaged in it should be ashamed of themselves.

Enhanced by Zemanta

9 thoughts on “A sad study in rude behavior at Supervisors meeting”

  1. Doug, I’m not sure why you would include Bob in the “rudeness and disruptive” group. I didn’t see or hear him do anything rude. His only comments was that in general republicans stand for less taxes. Maybe I missed something.

  2. Unfortunately Doug, they are only mimicking the kind of behavior that has been displayed in the national arena since the advent of these fake “grassroots” activist groups. With that said, the chair of any meeting is responsible for maintaining order and if that fails, ordering the sergeant-at-arms (or equivalent) to escort offenders from the room. This type of behaviour in a courtroom would earn someone a few hours in the pokey if they didn’t heed the presiding officer’s warning.

    I might also put forth the idea that this type of behavior (nationwide, not just in Floyd) is being fueled by a constant diet of tabloid-style news coverage and shamelessly contrived, melodramatic reality shows. Apparently there are those who feel that public displays of childish behavior “raise” them to some level of celebrity here in the little “pond” known as Floyd.

  3. Okay, I didn’t notice him disrupting the meeting but I was in the back and didn’t see/hear everything.

    • I was, frankly, surprised at Bob’s behavior at the meeting. I expect that kind of disruption from Joe and others but not from him. Sadly, the mob mentality seemed to rule.

  4. Just look at the picture and you see the man in the orange shirt (I don’t know who he is or who he might represent) pointing his finger at the board in a threatening way. Weren’t most of us taught that it’s simply “not polite” to point?! Whatever happened to common courtesy and respect…

  5. I do want to say that the gentlemen on the BOS had several very hard decisions to make last night. While I may disagree with where each tax rate was set I believe all things considered the county benefited as a result of the decisions made. A great deal of respect should be shown to these five county leaders for being willing to make such decisions in these very hard circumstances. Now I hope they will find a way to get these additional funds into the two areas that really need them, the classroom and the sheriffs dept.

  6. People don’t want their taxes raised that much it is crazy, people don’t have the money,
    Generating more money for what’s needed , why doesn’t Floyd wake up and open an ABC store and sell liquor, people are going to buy if it’s sold here or not
    it would bring an incredible amount of tax dollars to Floyd.
    Just more back wards thinking of we don’t want liquor to be sold here! very foolish

  7. Doug-Do you have any comments for us about the sad state of affairs w/the superintendt’s “non-salary” and the evidently tacit agreement of the SBO, over a period of several years? I never begrudged the man a salary increase, but hiding it and flat out lying about it is a whole different story! Good for Casey Clinger for sticking with the inquiry and insisting on some transparency and accountability with the SBO budget-long overdue!! The King is dead!

Comments are closed.

Share on facebook
Share on twitter