Commissioners don't reduce their workweek

August 15, 1994|By Kerry O'Rourke | Kerry O'Rourke,Sun Staff Writer

Carroll County commissioners considered shortening their official workweek to one day to have more time to campaign, but then decided against the change.

During the past two summers, the commissioners have met twice a week. The rest of the year they meet three days a week.

Commissioner Julia W. Gouge said she suggested last week that the board consider meeting only one day a week after hearing at a recent national conference that other county boards recess during the summer and sometimes longer in an election year.

Mrs. Gouge is a candidate for lieutenant governor with Republican gubernatorial candidate William S. Shepard.

She said she had heard the other two commissioners -- who are running for re-election -- fret about time constraints.

"They kept complaining they didn't have any time to campaign," Mrs. Gouge said.

Currently, she said, she spends two days a week at the County Office Building and four to five days campaigning for Mr. Shepard.

Commissioner Elmer C. Lippy, who spends five days a week at the commissioners' office, has commented that his schedule has been packed recently.

He said he and Commissioner Donald I. Dell, who also is in his office every weekday, are at a disadvantage in the election because they spend so much time on official duties.

"I'm vain enough to want to get re-elected," Mr. Lippy said.

"We all need time to do campaigning. Why give the newcomers a big advantage here?"

Five Democrats and five Republicans are running in the Sept. 13 primary.

The top three vote-getters in each party will advance to the Nov. 8 election to compete for three seats.

Mr. Lippy said the necessary work would not get done were the commissioners to meet only once a week.

He suggested scheduling meetings Monday and Tuesday so the rest of the week would be more free. Currently, the meeting days vary.

Mr. Dell said meeting once a week would not be practical because the commissioners would not have enough time to meet with staff members.

He said the board probably will not make Monday and Tuesday the regular meeting days because of Mrs. Gouge's schedule with the Shepard campaign.

The commissioners have been scheduling meetings around her, he said.

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