To The Daily Sun,
Let's set the record straight as to who is to blame for our broken county government. There have been many impassioned letters in the past few days concerning the employees of the county having to pick up the cost of their health care. You are just the latest victims in this battle between two warring political factions. You are by no means the first.
The commissioners and their county administrator have been breaking the law by not using funds where they were supposed to be used. This is not a private company, and we have laws about how taxpayers money is to be spent. They blatantly thumbed their noses at the law and have mismanaged the operation.
They have also broken the law by not filing reports to the Attorney General's Office as required. The three commissioners should all be removed from office for this alone, but I guess that elected official are above the law it seems.
The problems with our county government has been and still is poor leadership and bad management. I know that the nursing staff at Belknap County Nursing Home works hard and they give the best care they can to the residents under terrible and abusive supervision. Our county administrator has decimated the nursing staff in the past two years just to win political points for her side. I do not believe that the commissioners and the administrator of our county have the best interest of the residents or our nursing home as their top priority as it should be. If they did they would not use their nursing staff as pawns. They care not one bit how their decisions affect the lives of those who have to live with the consequences of terrible decision making as long as they make their political point.
As a result of all this the nursing staff at BCNH has been a revolving door. In the past year or so they have hired between six and 10 nurses who all worked two or three months then quit. One of these nurses was heard to say when she was leaving that she "had never been in a more vicious place in her life." What an adjective to describe your workplace. The word is out among the nursing professionals in the area. Sure, BCHN has great benefits, but it's a horrible place to work.
We all remember a few months ago that the commissioners went to the county convention seeking around $3.5 million for much-needed jail improvements, but they could not give much in the way of details as to exactly what was needed, only vague general descriptions. But I remember that $1 million of this was to fix the ventilation system in the jail. I thought that was a lot and questioned that at the meeting. Then I read in the commissioners' meeting minutes that they had an HVAC professional look at the building and he estimated that the job could be done for about half a million. Now I think this is still a lot and needs to be further evaluated, but the fact is that the commissioners tried to get a million dollars from the taxpayers to fix something that would cost half that at most. Is this how we do things is Belknap County? You have to be kidding me.
We should be thanking the members of the county convention for looking after our tax dollars, and for not allowing the commissioners to hoodwink millions from taxpayers for God knows what. That is why we elected them and they are doing their job under a lot of pressure. Good job Convention for not giving the commissioners what would have amounted to a blank checkbook.
Our problems with our county government lay squarely at the feet of the commissioners and the administration in place now. Thank you Mr. Philpot for not running for another term. Thank you voters of Belknap County for having the good sense to vote Mr. Thomas out of office. Now if we can get Mr. Nedeau to resign and not serve his last two years we can start with a clean slate which is what is really needed.
As for Ms. Shackett, she has never been qualified to be in her position from day one. She was awarded this position simply by virtue of political connections and not by any objective measure of credentials. She has made a complete mess of our nursing home and she needs to go for gross mismanagement of the operation.
I sincerely hope that our new commissioners are of better character than what we have today. I also hope they understand what they are walking into and that the management staff at the county needs to be put under the magnifying glass and those that have been a problem by not fostering a team atmosphere will be removed.
Nurses are wonderful, I know the staff at BCNH works hard under miserable management. Our problems with the county lies fully with poor leadership and bad management. We have pointed the finger for the problems at the county at everyone except where the guilt really lies. The management staff that runs our county is in dire need of a house sweeping.