With all of the discussion of public sector pay vs private sector pay and the retirement benefits of government workers vs private citizens, it is easy to lose sight of the fact that government employees are a cost which is supported by taxpayers.
Govenment is supposed to produce services which provide security for an area. It is also supposed to provides services to educate citizens so that they can become more productive and contribute to the economy. Governments provide services which regulate trade and traffic so that a business economy can operate and flourish. Governments have grown to embrace the idea of being a safety net for those citizens who have difficulty fending for themselves.
There are a lot of dedicated and conscientious people serving in governmental positions, but that does not alter the fact that every one of these public employee is paid through the taxes imposed on his neighbors or more distant countrymen.
Therefore, every public employee should be cognizant of the fact that their jobs must enable their neighbors to get on with life and make money. I feel that many public employees see that as their main mission and do their best to operate as economically as possible.
In Floyd County, Sheriff Zeman is an example of someone who communicates a real sense of understanding the need to make every dollar count while maintaining county security in the face of increasing crime. On the other hand, the Floyd County school system has been operating with no real oversight for years and has only recently been persuaded to open their budgets to scrutiny.
We need law enforcement and we need schools and a host of other services, but these have to operate within a budget that can be supported by taxpayers. We do not need a nanny state to look after us. We just need government that we can afford.
In today's economy, we private citizens are making do in many areas. Is it too much to ask that every one of our government entities at the local, state and federal level do the same?
The Floyd Tea Party is working toward more responsive government at all levels. If you believe that government should be more responsive, the next Floyd Tea Party meeting will be on Tuesday May 17th at 7:30 pm at the Jessie Peterman Memorial Library.