On captains, ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’
Having attended Thursday’s Peachtree City Council meeting, I would like to thank the mayor and three of the council members for their decision to continue with the purchase of a Victory motorcycle for the police department.
I was impressed with their ability to digest the facts which clearly show the effectiveness that this purchase, and also possibly a second motorcycle, would have on the safety of the city’s citizens.
I also would encourage those same members to discard the proposal to drastically revamp the organizational structure of the department, a move that would have a truly negative impact on the city where I have lived for nearly 23 years.
I believe the facts presented by the officers who spoke during the public comment portion of the meeting were very accurate as to the negative impact that would result from such a change.
If anything, the emphasis should be on growing the department as the city expands and crime continues to creep into town from surrounding areas.
The arrest of the apartment burglars and locating a missing child by none other than one of the officers who spoke at the council highlights the dedication of the officers now employed by the department and the effectiveness of the current structure.
Another impact that was not fully covered was even further showcased to me after the nice presentation earlier in the meeting by the Convention & Visitors Bureau members.
That impact is the loss of revenue to the city which would result from a less effective department which I believe would result in Peachtree City being more ripe for crime.
This in turn would make organizations and corporations think twice before booking conventions or other major activities in the city, hence a loss of hotel and sales tax revenues.
I firmly believe in the old axiom, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” I encourage the city manager, mayor, and council members to spend time with the employees by doing ride-alongs and over-the-shoulder visits, which would give them a much better perspective on the issue.
And this technique should be applied to any part of the city’s organization that they are thinking about changing in a drastic way.
Had these members spent more time with Public Works employees, I do not think they would have cut 23 of those employees.
Don’t just look at spread sheets, flow charts, and organizational diagrams. Rather look at the operational side of an issue and all the unintended consequences that might result from a hasty, superficial decision.
James V. Kelso III
Lt Col USAF(Ret)
Peachtree City, Ga.