As an interested observer of CSRA news, I have watched as Augusta’s leaders have held forth to the press, radio and television on the safety of their citizens after the recent tragic beating of the couple walking late in the evening. Days later, reporters and TV cameras followed the mayor, Augusta Commission members and others walking along and pointing out various deficiencies in the area and espousing various fixes to get the right kind of press and impress voters with how they were on the ball.
Why wasn’t the responsible department head out looking at the scene the day after the incident and evaluating what could be done immediately and with minimal cost to prevent another such occurrence? A responsible manager would be proactive in such circumstances and replacing burnt-out lighting; trimming foliage that provided cover for the attack; and taking other reasonable and appropriate actions to mitigate future reoccurrences.
After completing these actions, reporting to city management what was done and making further recommendations (based on their familiarity with the area), which might require senior city management to spend money not in the department budget, might also have been a reasonable approach.
Why wasn’t it done, and why didn’t city leaders ask the right questions? Is it because city leaders do not encourage their employees to be proactive in a positive manner for fear of being chastised by these same leaders for exceeding their authority?