Communication fails in controversy


Having attended the May 14, 2019 City Council meeting because I had felt confusion regarding the huge controversy over the Budget Committee decision about the funds being transferred from the Library and the Police Department, I wanted to hear what would be said at this public meeting.

It was not until near the end of all the comments that a full picture came about.

(City Manager Ray) Towry and (Finance Director Brandon) Neish are both very competent and knowledgeable persons. It appears that their downfall in presenting the information to the Budget Committee, was that was not the message the public received. What was intended was to re-establish the basic fact that for both the Library and the Police Department, administration costs had not been factored into their individual budgets for operating, which the City of Sweet Home was covering. 

Therefore it needed to be clarified and corrected. Unfortunately that message was not stated from the very front of the presentation the Budget Committee gave. 

As this community is very sensitive to being “presented” with demands for more funding or lack of it, it caused an immediate explosion that Mr. Towry and Mr. Neish did not understand.

All it would have taken was a simple basic response. 

All the citizens heard was a lot of numbers and explanations mixed together, which considering the mind set by that time, was not simple.

The funding issue needs to be corrected; however, it may be a simple apology for inadequate communication should be considered also.


Bonnie J. Neal

Sweet Home