Letters to the editor

Editor, the Advocate:

County Commissioner Kevin Janak and County Judge Ben Zeller were clearly on the defensive at the beginning of the commissioners’ meeting July 15.

They became more so during the second hour when they were asked pointed questions about the handling of funds designated to repair airport facilities. Their explanations were simply repeats of well-known facts that revealed nothing and only served to further obfuscate murky timelines and accountability issues.

I believe they are both honest guys but they should have allowed the airport staff, airport manager and airport commissioners to do their jobs at the airport, instead of intruding and micromanaging a process for which they are unqualified.

Commissioner Janak has a well-earned reputation with management at Citizens Medical Center of arbitrarily violating chain of command by directly contacting management and staff when he observes a problem in facility maintenance. Leaking faucets and messy public restrooms certainly need to be corrected, and the staff welcomes constructive criticism but they don’t deserve to be harshly reprimanded by a county commissioner who has no operational authority. Misuse of his position to castigate and demoralize staff is inappropriate on many levels and reveals a lack of judgment and character.

I believe this is part of the problem at the airport. County commissioners should offer oversight, support and constructive criticism, but let the airport staff do their jobs.

Rick Collie, Victoria

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(1) comment

Buddy Lee

Thank you Rick Collie for making some sense out of the joint meeting of the Commissioners Court and the Airport Commissioners. I walked away from it probably more confused than when I went it.

You shed some light on the subject with plenty of experience from over the years. I trust your judgment. I did come away from the meeting with the idea that there was some micromanagement going on that is somewhat understandable during a crisis.

But it does not show good leadership. Why do you go to great lengths to find a respectable airport manager with fresh new ideas and then not utilize his expertise? It reminds me of Charlie Brown dealing with Lucy. She holds the ball and tells you to kick it with all that you bring to the table and then takes it away at the last minute rendering Charlie Brown with no where to go with his efforts. That is exactly what stuck in my craw when I heard that the airport manager was told to keep out of it.

That is always a huge red flag that points to either skullduggery or poor management. Neither is acceptable for the people of Victoria County in our efforts to make the airport the best it can be. I do not think there was any skullduggery going on so it had to be poor management. Who was told to inform the airport manager to stay out of it. That question was never answered. I want to know who Lucy is.

(Edited by staff.)

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