Getting people to serve on a local board is not easy. Most folk with above average intelligence and initiative are already busy running a successful business, holding down a professional job and making a difference in our world.
Getting them to budget time to serve on a board can be both a headache and sacrifice.
Your Clarksdale Press Register wants to thank those who serve on community boards in our community. Only in a few circumstances does it come with a paycheck and if that is the reason you took the job, you probably don’t need to serve on a board.
Board appointments were the top of the news last week as Carnegie Public Library of Clarksdale and Coahoma County has a board at odds with its Librarian.
It’s not the first time it has happened around here. Clarksdale Public Utility, Clarksdale Municipal Schools, Coahoma County Schools and Coahoma County Community College have all seen their executive/general manager/superintendent clash with the board.
Your Clarksdale Press Register would like to point out most entities only charge their board with four tasks:
1.) Hire the Executive Director/General Manager/Superintendent.
2.) Set a budget and monitor that funds are legally spent according to that budget.
3.) Set policy and procedure for the entity.
4.) If they have taxing authority or if they charge for services, they are to monitor revenue and set rates or millage to balance the books.
Boards do not handle the day-to-day operations, they don’t manage employees, and while they may sign checks, they don’t have access to how funds are spent, except through the budget.
To go outside those limits invites lawsuits from employees and the public, and scrutiny from State Auditors and the Attorney General.
We want to remind voters that when you elect a city or county official, they are the ones who appoint people - good or bad - to these boards. It is one of their most important duties.
We ask all board members to take their job seriously, attend meetings, ask questions and be involved in the work of your board.
Our boards are directly linked to this community’s quality of life. Clarksdale needs the very best we have serving on them.