Sumter County furloughs all employees

Catching up on local political news, this story came out in Americus at the end of last week. The County Commission of Sumter County has decided that it must furlough all 230 county employees – from janitors to elected officials and everyone in between – 4 days each month in order to cover projected budget shortfalls. See here the editorial board of the Americus Times-Recorder’s reaction.

These decisions should never be made lightly, and I don’t believe they were. I place the blame more squarely on government waste and largess than the local Americus Times-Recorder staff is willing to, but admittedly I do not know the local government there and cannot point to specifics, only suspicions.

From what I have seen through the lens of the Americus Times-Recorder, not even the County Accounting Officer wanted to bring up the issue, but felt she had no choice. Similarly, the County Commission didn’t want to do this, but again felt they were doing the best they could in extremely difficult circumstances, and without further information I tend to agree with them. At the same time, however, I must ask from a philosophical perspective if it is better to kill one person rather than harm many, or do you harm the many to save the one?

Government largess combined with our own individual bad habits has forced us into this predicament. The question truly is, where do we go from here?

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