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Jeff Branscome writes about Spotsylvania County.

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Voting System is Down

The supervisors will again vote by roll call because the electronic voting system is not working. It was struck by lightning. I’ve always wondered about that voting machine. It’s such an unimportant item that it was probably never reported in the newspaper (I would have put it in my blog) but I always have wanted to know how much it cost and the history behind it because it might be a charm that it was hit by lightning. The darn thing hardly ever worked.

According to a few people in the board meeting room who would know, you get what you pay for. This thing was cheap, in terms of government spending. 

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Permalink: http://news.fredericksburg.com/spotsygovt/2009/06/23/voting-system-is-down/

  • MAVRICKinc

    Witnessed the televised version the BOS’s June 23, 2009 meeting with my volume set as high as it gets. Did the same on TV #2.

    While I could hear Ms. Crooks’ presentation and responses on the ARRA agenda from the next room, I had to put my ear against my speakers to hear what Nancy Miller, partner wth Miller Foley Group, had to say about ARRA from the standpoint of accounting, reporting and compliance requirements related to the new funds made available through the American Recovery and Reinveswtment Act of 2009 (ARRA).

    What I heard, based soley on my compromised viewing, that money coming to Spotsylvania through the ARRA program plan came with two major conditions; accountability/receipts and oversite/regulation. Simply said, money coming from the Fed to Sponsylvania County contained no provisions for discretionary money or spending by Spotsylvania County stakeholders.

    If I’m not mistaken, Spotsylvania County rejected proposals being made by the Fed to underwrite “Affordable Housing” in the County because the money being offered had no discretionary spending provisions.

    While the money is out there, to be had by anyone who wants to play by the rules, I have to ask what Spotsylvania County has to lose? If Spotsylvania County and their stakeholders can’t deal with a balanced ledger, maybe we should take a second look at the ARRA monies, or stand clear of their money for want of gambling with our own money to complete our Capital Projects and Investment opportunities that comes with no guarantees or certainty of a pay back, unless we are prepared to play by the rules.

  • lgross

    well.. sort of… I think when it was revealed that
    money had to be spent then reimbursement
    would be forthcoming – provided all the rules were
    followed – was a big RED flag.

    Everyone knows that what the Feds want to
    happen is for the localities to spend more money
    on stuff but at the same time – they are looking
    at a longer term deficit from giving out “free”
    money…

    so.. I for one.. being the cynic I am sometimes
    can envision a situation where the county spends
    the money then gets denied the reimbursement
    on a “gotcha” type issue

    I’m sure some counties are desperate enough to
    take the bait.. but give the BOS some credit for
    being wary…

    If they spent the money and go rejected on the
    reimbursement.. they’d have to raise taxes to
    pay for it..

  • gramps

    Excellent assessment Larry.

  • MAVRICKinc

    For what it’s worth, DITTO. Since we are only able to play by our rules and no other, we can be assured we’ll never embrace the stimulus money, unless the BOS wants to gamble on their vision and that of their special interest.

    Gotchas are what you get back for not attending to the stores business. We seem to have our share of gotchas with the belief that we’ll get a different result from doing the same thing, over and over again.

    If the BOS want to gamble with $80,000 of tax payer money, I suggest they hire someone capable of pulling it off and not under the guise of “these are extraordinary times.” We either have the resources of accountability on hand or we just shoot ourselves in the foot. We need someone who can manage a business and not a way of life. Change is more than just a government check but how well we spend stimulus money. It ain’t rocket science.

    The days of “plunk the magic twanger” as a business model, are over. Let’s hope we get beyond the staging and lip-service and get down to business. Every time I hear from either side of the podium at BOS meetings that “I don’t know and will have to get back to you” is a testament to poor management practices and skills.

    It’s a simple question. If you don’t know, who does? If you don’t know, why show up in the first place? If the agenda is to remain silent, why even ask what someone else thinks? If you don’t want to engage the public in debate or the exchange of knowledge, what good are you to constituents and citizens alike,under the banner and claim you serve in their best intertest?

    The quest for something more or better deserves to be heard on its own merits. The rest of the equation is about who’s listening and who’s not.

    Everytime I’ve been denied access to knowledge has always been my first red-flag. Due to the stressful nature of knowing, most would prefer not to exceed the boundaries of knowing or the confines of the box they have have been provided for want of a different opinion or their next paycheck.

    What does it feel like to be nothing more than foregone conclusion?

    Next on my agenda is understanding the foreclosure on our home by the Lee’s Hill Community Association, when we’re quite capable of paying our mortgage.

    Not to worry. It’s a story that will be told by separate cover.

    These are dangerous not extraordinay times. Knowing the difference will get you where you want most to be. Details will help you get where you’re going, with the least amout of aggravation.

    Gramps/ Larry, stay tuned. Whether we lose the house or not, we’re going to stick it out in Spotsylvania County, no matter what the county power brokers and County have in store for us.

    Simply said, we’re not going any where, except for the demands of of the Lee’s Hill Community Association, Inc and the Greens’ Townhouse Association. Inc. who take our money but give nothing back, because they don’t have too.