Letter to the Editor

County should focus on financial costs of projects

County Administrator Gary Kubic would like to have County Council ban smoking on county (taxpayer owned) outdoor properties.  Will he later ask for trained sniffer dogs to make sure that all food and drink entering county  property is sniffed to ensure it is nutritious? Also the sniffers could check for obnoxious perfumes and deodorants. Parks will need fences and gates at which the dogs are stationed.  Maybe Kubic could give the Mayor of New York additional ideas for infringing on individual rights.  Will county workers in parks, etc., get extra time to leave the property for their smokes? Wow! Cost, cost and more cost.

Is cost  of  concern?  Look at current estimated cost of $56 million OVERSPENDING on the recent $152 million ordinance taxpayers approved for road improvements.  The ordinance required the administration to submit a complete cost estimate and schedule to council before the project started.  Where is it? FOIA requests did not produce it.  There is still no schedule on parts of the program, and one or two projects are  “on hold.”  Do you guess the  county ran out of money sources? County and City Council should spend  time on finding why projects aren’t managed — not on outdoor smoking. What happened? How can construction be better managed? Where is financial transparency on anything?

A few weeks ago there was information in the press that Beaufort County was going to spend $750,000 to update the former Special Needs home for space for the Coroner.  After obtaining a copy of the estimate, it contained $22,500 for demolition and then  another $14,000 for demolition of concrete walks and two sheds etc.  It appears the property is to be cleared instead of remodeled. The press announcement indicated the coroner would now be able to do autopsies with an additional employee instead of sending them out.  What is the cost comparison between in house and elsewhere?  Autopsy Room equipment alone is estimated at $96,000.  Was this project evaluated by the County Finance Committee and council?

Oh well, it is only taxpayer money. Why be concerned?  We should have term limits on all elected offices so we get fresh thinking into  government.

Jim Bequette, Retired CPA, Beaufort

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