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Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Political Operatives Initiate Power Grab For Coroner's Office


If a few Rock County supervisors get their way, ordinary citizens will have less of a share in local decision-making when they lose their right to vote for the county coroner's office. Recent action out of the Rock County Courthouse shows a handful of county supervisors are preparing to short circuit the county board's majority decision made back in March of 2009. At that time, the Board voted 16-12 in favor of keeping the county coroner an electively held office.

Yesterday (Monday), during the Public Safety and Justice (PS&J) committee meeting, Supervisor Mary Beaver (Evansville) requested a motion to hold a special meeting of the PS&J for Wednesday beginning at 4PM to fast track a medical examiner's resolution on the agenda with the stipulation that regardless of the outcome of that vote on the resolution by the PS&J committee, the resolution will still be forwarded to the county board for a vote on Thursday, April 8 at 6 PM.

Beyond the obvious right for local citizens to select one of their own for coroner is the blatant arrogance and lack of trust opposing county supervisors have towards their own constituency's ability to make the right choice. Let alone the negative atmosphere of partisan politics and a fabricated aura of mistrust cast towards the honorable employees and coroner currently working the office. They don't deserve this kind of treatment from anyone, particularly from members of the county board. It shows a complete lack of class on their part.

There is no doubt this rakish attempt is only the beginning of a full-fledged campaign to centralize unchecked county power into the hands of GOP establishment sponsored textbook bureaucrats. Besides, the only people who should make the decision to surrender such an important elective right should be the people themselves in the form of a referendum - not a cabal of political operatives carrying out a vendetta against a very capable elected official. The will of the people must not be held hostage by a few ego-centered authoritarians.

The key players in this apparent coup to wrest the coroner's office away from the ballot box and county residents are Russ Podzilni, Richard Ott, Louis Peer, Mary Beaver, and Mary Mawhinney.

Tell them kindly, voters are smart enough to make the right choices and to keep their hands off of our voting rights.


Anonymous said...

How convenient to ram something like this through at election time. How come there have been no articles in the Gazette reporting about this weeks ago?

Lou Kaye said...

What? And ruin their chances to have this underhanded plan succeed? No way!

"There is no greater tyranny than that which is perpetrated under the shield of law and in the name of justice." -- Montesquieu

Richard Costerisan said...

The Janesville Gazette continues slamming the Rock County Coroner, Jenifer Keach, and her exempiary employees, since her appointment to the office by Governor Doyle. She also has faced continual harrassment from Republicans on the Rock County Board and their lackeys. Voters should end these backroom efforts to deny them the highest standards of coroner services. The Republicans simply want control, whaterver the cost. Express your views here to let them know we won't let them steal our right to choose.

Lou Kaye said...

Ordinary citizens, working class and seniors in Rock County just took another huge hit. Supervisor Jim Joiner was defeated in Tuesday's election by one of those deep-pocketed GOP establishment sponsored tax-shifting textbook bureaucrats - Brent Fox of ABC Supply. The table is now tilted towards corporate fascism and authoritarian rule.

Anonymous said...

Joiner, Grahn, Spangler and Bown all lost. So did we all.

Anonymous said...

I too am wondering why this matter has not been more visible recently. This is not just an issue of coroner versus medical examiner, it is about the strength of a system where the people are allowed to elect their public officials.

The idea that switching from an elected official to an employee of the county will fix the problem is ridiculous. The situation with the former coroner that brought visibility to this matter was bizarre to say the least. Needless to say, this wasn't a problem with the position, it was a problem with the person in the position. Additionally, if memory serves, she was threatened with dismissal which forced her to "retire."

What if a Medical Examiner fails to meet the expectations of the board? Where do we go from there?

This is simply an opportunity for the board to gain more power while trying to appear as they actually are doing this in our best interest.

Having said that, I am not a Democrat or a Republican. I am a resident of Rock County who votes the issues with no affiliation. Keep the current system - it works!!!!!

Anonymous said...

The issue was brought to the county board and the ps&j committee over 45 days ago however a DEMOCRAT tabled the matter and wanted to wait until after the elections. Did anyone every stop and think that the professionals in this county do not like working with the corrupt corners office as she is very rude to all fire, police and ems personnel? A medical examiner would have someone to answer to besides the governor. That way yes, the county would have control over the medical examiner and could be disciplined as needed. Also as a side note….ALL ROCK COUNTY BOARD MEMBERS ARE SUPPOSED TO BE NON-Partisan.

Lou Kaye said...

Okay, lets hold the elective feature of every public office hostage based on the performance of the office holder. So, if you don't think your congressman or council member is qualified to do the job, just file a resolution to abolish the office and instead of having thousands of people make the appointment, just select a few non-partisans for a panel to select one for us. That is pure authoritarianism and anti-democratic.

You're right, county board members are supposed to be non-partisan, but I know and you know that's only wishful thinking. You referred the board member that tabled the resolution 45 days ago as a DEMOCRAT. Or did you just do that for me and nobody else has any clue?

"ALL ROCK COUNTY BOARD MEMBERS ARE SUPPOSED TO BE NON-Partisan" Do you really believe I'd on't know what that mean

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