On Oct. 18, 2013, the citizens of Karnes County were subjected to embarrassment by the incompetence of our county commissioners court.
It became public knowledge that the chief budget officer, our county judge, had lost the county’s budget, a 60 page document!
It is difficult to comprehend how she could lose such a large document when it only had to be filed in the county clerk’s office, less than 50 yards from her office.
The first question one has to ask is - how does this happen? The next question is - why did it take 18 days to address the situation?
The “reconstructed” budget has a cover page where the chief budget officer states that she “learned the budget was misplaced/lost on Oct. 12, 2013.” The next question that should be asked is - why did it take so long (for her to realize she had not filed it) yet her secretary and the county attorney knew it was missing/lost on October 1, 2013?
The budget is arguably the county’s most important document, yet there were no questions asked by they commissioners and no explanations offered to the citizens regarding the county operating unlawfully for 18 days. They did not reference any legal statute which would support the actions taken on Friday, or which would allow the county to continue to operate with this “reconstructed” budget.
It is way past time to hold the leadership of Karnes county responsible and accountable, for their actions and/or inaction. Let’s all remember they asked for their positions and they are being well paid therefore, they should be held accountable!
As taxpayers, we should all be concerned that our Commissioners and the chief budget officer/County Judge, have demonstrated no respect for the budgetary process. Examples of the disregard for the budget are:
- In the past 3 years our budget has mushroomed from approximately $3.5 million to roughly $28 million;
- They Improperly amended last year’s budget over 65 times;
- During the first meeting of the new fiscal year, they approved an “emergency” budget amendment;
- They lost/misplaced the official budget, and
- In violation of our state Constitution, they failed to approve a balanced budget for Karnes County.
Shame on them for doing it and shame on us for allowing them to do it!
Betty and Maurice Yarter