Serving Kenly, Selma, Smithfield, Princeton & Pine Level since 1973

County agencies misuse, abuse ‘personnel matter’ exemptions

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Insanity is defined as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. This happens in Johnston County when we continue to elect the same people. After they have been in their position long enough it’s not about the money, it’s about the power and any good intentions they first had are long gone.

This paper has tried to highlight the lack of cooperation toward taxpayers the school board and county government have shown at public meetings. Yes, we have quite the swamp to drain here. Basically, if elected officials choose not to answer a question or address an issue, it is defined as a “personnel matter,” and the subject is quickly closed. For example, if a county worker cuts up someone’s flower bed by accident while cutting grass and the county doesn’t wish to address the complaint, the issue becomes a “personnel matter” due to the worker driving the county lawnmower.

The county government and sheriff won’t answer my questions about the poor training and lack of coverage by sheriff’s school resource officers afforded our school kids and had his lawyer, Ronnie Mitchell, write me to tell me to mind my own business stating these issues were “personnel matters.”

Lawyer James Lawrence Jr. wrote me on behalf of Johnston County Public Schools, again avoiding answers to questions relating to the safety of our kids in schools — again, a “personnel matter.”

These weren’t important to media outlets either who pandered to those elected officials. However, what should be a “personnel matter” and withheld from the public is all over the news! I refer to the battle between the school board, Superintendent Ross Renfrow and the Clayton High School principal. We, the common citizens, aren’t supposed to see this. How did this happen? Isn’t this a “personnel matter?”

Jim Davenport