Letter to the Editor: County Attorney Input

At the August 4th County Commissioner meeting, current County Attorney Chad Miner, told Kosciusko’s Commissioners they should hire Ed Ormsby to replace him in the event that Chad wins the election against Antony Garza for judge in Court Three. Chad referenced a prior meeting between the Commissioners and Ormsby taking place. The Commissioners agreed without much public discussion.

And that is how roughly $80,000 of your tax dollars potentially went from Chad’s pockets to the pockets of Ormsby. A back room conversation at some point—we don’t know when, no job posting whatsoever, and a short discussion, motion by my opponent, and an immediate unanimous vote.

Now, to be fair, in the event that Chad Miner does defeat Antony Garza in November’s election, Kosciusko will need a new County Attorney…in January 2021, four months from now. A reasonable and proper course of action would have been to publicly announce the potential job back in June, when Miner became the nominee, and use the six months between then and January to interview candidates, competitively bid the $80,000 contract, and allow the public input on how to spend their money.

Instead, the Commissioners met in private with Ed, Chad told them at a meeting to go ahead and do it, and they did it.

To be clear, this letter is not a rant against Ed Ormsby. The County Commissioners failed their duty to you, the tax-paying citizens of Kosciusko. Instead of basing their decision on public input, after a public job posting, subject to public feedback, they simply hired someone without including the public in anyway.

If you will elect me as your County Commissioner in November, I will work to ensure that County contracts are publicly posted, competitively bid, and assigned on merits rather than doling out money through practically-yet-not-technically nepotism.

Because in the middle of a pandemic, with 11% unemployment, when the County is considering cutting budgets, we need to be responsible with your money. We need rigorous public review. And we need County Commissioners who will award contracts based on criteria that matters more than politics.

If you are ready for change, if you are ready for transparency and accountability, vote McConnell for Commissioner.

Travis McConnell