Originally created 09/08/01

Writer takes a close look at Augusta



Let's take an objective look at Augusta's government.

The mayor's office: Mayor Bob Young is doing a good job. However, he is facing an enormous task of working with diversified groups and evenly divided county commissioners along racial lines. Because the mayor has a strong faith in God, he will prevail. He should strengthen his faith and stay the course.

County administrator: George Kolb was hired because of his qualifications. Now he seeks to do his job. It won't be easy because we elected to the city commission people who have few or no qualifications. It is difficult for someone who is not qualified to oversee or supervise someone else. That is what Mr. Kolb is up against. He should be steadfast and continue to educate his supervisors on how they should work with him, so he can do his job.

Sheriff's department: Sheriff Ronnie Strength, whom I know personally, is a fine and capable person. He was trained and supervised by the best - Charlie Webster. Sheriff Strength believes in God and in people. This in itself puts him in a special category. When you see him in public, he is quick to speak. He is not just a role model for the people he supervises, but for all people.

Fire department: The fire department has been and still is doing a good job. I recommend the standards for hiring a chief not be lowered, but that the academic requirement be rewritten. As you can see, people who now are considered not to be qualified are doing a great job. Consider changes that will allow those within the department to be considered for the job of fire chief...

County commissioners: They must understand their importance to Augusta's continuing success. Each must take stock of himself and realize his responsibility, which is to understand he was elected to exercise the "will of the people," not his own. Each commissioner must recognize that the racial make-up of the commission requires them to set aside petty differences and make their decisions based on what is best for the county and its people...

Joseph Diggs Sr., Augusta