A couple of weeks ago Smith County employees were given a paid day off to honor President Ford. We thought you might like to know what that decision cost the county taxpayers. So we asked the Smith County auditor for a number and here was her response:
"Employee time records are administered in the payroll system on a pay period basis, not a daily basis. The system is unable (to) generate a report of regular hours associated with only one day during the pay period; therefore the Auditors office is not in possession of the requested information."
In summary here is what she is saying, "I don't know."
This is a question that should bring a more meaningful answer. You also need to know that the county auditor reports to the judges not the county commissioner's court.
The last jail bond election was a failure. Two of the main reasons it failed was because the voters didn't have confidence in the plans or the leadership. Responses like this don't do much to change that perception.
I know there is leadership on the both commissioners court and among judges who want to see things change. But to make this a better east Texas they will need to create a greater sense of urgency in changing attitudes, particularly if they want the voters to pass a bond election anytime soon.