To the Editor:

On Tuesday, November 2, 2021, voters in Franklin County will indicate if they wish to abolish the position of elected county treasurer. If this effort is successful, voters will surrender their right to choose the county treasurer and will transfer that power to the Franklin County Commissioners.

A Sun Journal article, “Franklin County commissioners move forward with process to ask voters if they want to abolish elected treasurer position” (August 12, 2021, p.13, Regional Edition), reported that Commissioner Brann said, “I think voters should have a say” about the issue of an elected vs appointed treasurer. Commissioner Harvell said that appointment would be “more efficient” than election.

The justification provided by Commissioners Brann and Harvell is not convincing. When we elect the county treasurer, every voter has a say as opposed to an appointment determined by a majority of only three commissioners. As to the efficiency of an appointment, it is true that “democracy is messy” (Robert F. Kennedy Jr.). Rather than efficiency being the goal in selecting a treasurer, the goal should be to select a person who is truly representative of Franklin County voters.

In the tradition of electing the Franklin County treasurer, we have a system that has worked, we avoid decisions based on bias, we honor the will of the people, and we allow every voter to be part of the decision. In the absence of clear and convincing justification for a change, I will vote “NO” to abolishing the position of elected county treasurer in Franklin County.

Lynn Ouellette


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