As a former Spokane County employee who used to ask a lot of tough questions and rarely received the whole and truthful answer, I applaud President Barack Obama for his decision to maintain an open government.
Commissioner Mark Richard’s recent acknowledgement of the hard feelings between Spokane Valley and Spokane County are indicative of the mistrust which occurs when parties are less than truthful and withhold facts. His statement, “We need to repair the damage … so your citizens and our citizens don’t suffer because of a lack of communication,” speaks volumes. This exact problem exists in his office as there is a decided lack of communication among commissioners with different viewpoints.
And the problem is not just in the Spokane County commissioners’ office. It exists throughout the county as those who are emboldened enough to ask the tough questions are frequently stonewalled.
I would suggest President Obama’s recent statement regarding open government, and I quote, “Starting today, every agency and department should know that this administration stands on the side not of those who seek to withhold information, but those who seek to make it known,” be posted in a prominent position in every county office.
Terry A. Hontz