Thursday, January 21, 2016


This is going to be one of the most important elections in history for our country.  Can you imagine another four years of the past eight?  I know I can’t, and only hope and pray for the sake of all of us that Hillary or the other guy does not win.  That being said you know who I am not going to vote for.

I will perform my civic duty and vote in the upcoming election, and if we have any chance left for this country we all need to exercise our right to vote.   Our national and state elections are very important, but so are our local elections.  There might be someone in Milam County who personally knows one of the candidates for president, but I doubt it.

However, as voters we can get to know our local candidates.  On the state and national level that is a bit harder to do.  We can only go by what we learn about them in the media.  On the local level it is a different story.  You can and should get to know your local candidates.  There will be a number of opportunities for you to meet them and learn more about their position on the office they are running for.

One of the most important things you can do about local offices is to learn what they do.  You can check online to find out what the constitutional mandates are for your local elected officials.   Knowing what the responsibilities of each office are will better allow you to select the best qualified candidate for that office.

Key words here are being the best qualified candidate.  Just because someone is an incumbent does not necessarily mean they are the best qualified.  They do have a record in that office that you can check to see if they have in fact been doing the job.  There are also candidates running this year for some offices that have never served as an elected official.

A lot of you know some of the candidates and may consider them friends.  Just because someone is a friend does not always make them the best choice for the office.  As a matter of fact sometimes the fact that they are a friend and you know them very well might be a good reason to not vote for them.

I guess what I am trying to say is that we need to look at elections as job interviews.  You wouldn’t hire someone to work for you if they didn’t meet the qualifications for the job that you were hiring them for.  Why vote for someone just because they are a friend if they can’t or haven’t been doing the job.  These folks will be working for us for the next four years in very important jobs.  These are jobs that are paid for by our tax dollars.  We need to get our monies worth.

Just because you know someone or they have held the job in the past does not mean they are the most qualified for the job.  Take time to get to know the candidates and the job they are “applying” for.  Then cast your vote for the person you believe is most qualified for the job.  An uneducated voter can be their own worst enemy. 

Voting is easier than ever in Milam County.  You can vote early or vote on election day at any of the polling places.  Do what you can to learn all you can about the candidates and their office at all levels of government.  Then most important of all be sure to cast your vote.

Friday, January 1, 2016


Been a good while since my last blog, but it has not been because there has been nothing to blog about.  Its just that my Mother always taught us to just not say anything if you can't say something nice.

There has been a great deal going on since my last blog in July.  Since then we have adopted a budget, lost two more county officials and finalized the ballot for the March primary.

I’ll leave the officials alone because I don’t really know all the facts and issues involved.  Lots of rumors going around and some claim to know all the facts, but there are so many variations floating around it’s hard to define the truth.  Some say the Judge took them down because of past conflicts, but I truly do not believe that.  Most of what I do believe is that there was some inappropriate behavior on their part that led to their demise.

On the budget note it is easy to define the truth because it is all on paper.  However, it is hard to add it all up.  The Judge has been preaching doom and gloom again with the situation with Luminant and their pending bankruptcy and relating how broke Milam County is.  So broke in fact that more county positions in mandated offices and optional offices were cut.  You got to give him credit for being consistent with his doom and gloom theory.  That’s his story and he is sticking to it.

With these cuts savings should have been somewhere in the 200,000 dollar range.  Yet, the general fund which should have seen these savings went up right at 45,000 dollars.  In addition the 2016 budget is the highest budget in Milam County history.  You can check all this with the County Auditor’s Office.

Now the funny part to this is that there was a move, a brilliant move in my opinion I might add, made by Commissioner Donald Shuffield to not adopt the Judge’s proposed 2016 budget.  His motion if approved would have kept the 2015 budget for the 2016 budget year.  You just had to be there to see the circus that erupted after he made his motion.

Commissioner Shuffield was visually verbally chastised by the Judge for voicing his opinion.  Yet Shuffield’s motion would have made for a smaller budget, kept the Veterans Office employee and all mandated office employees in place and basically been in line with the Judge’s statements that the county is in dire fiscal shape. It just does not compute to me.

Granted the Judge is correct in assuming one scenario that Luminant pays nothing and the county will be in dire fiscal straits.  He also used the capital murder trial as an excuse to cut positions in past years.  He was advised that the case would most likely plead out and it did.  There was also the rumor of Luminant going bankrupt before it actually did which again was a reason to cut.  Three years of cutting and we have the highest budget in Milam County history.

Well at least it is a new year.  We made it through 2015.  Now we just have to hope and pray for a Happy New Year in 2016.  Heavy on the pray.