Of great interest were many specific comments on how important it is for communities to work together. Cities and their counties must work together to succeed. The perception that city and county government do not work together is destructive.
The city/county governments of Thomson/McDuffie County made a memorable presentation about their challenges. Their success is demonstrated in recent completion of a new city/county building that houses both city and county governments.
Both the mayor of Thomson and the chairman of the McDuffie County Commission stated the absolute importance of working together. They gave examples of how they worked to maximize community resources and to assure the public that all their elected officials were working together for the good of county and city. They both agreed that they did not always agree, but it was private and not personal. Their disagreements were not for the public to be distracted with in the headlines. One of the two made a statement, so simple, so profound. “The city is in the county.” All the residents of the city are citizens of the county. The residents of the city pay county taxes. The residents of the city vote for a county commissioner.
One of our community’s greatest challenges is for our elected officials to work together to the benefit of every citizen of Milledgeville/Baldwin County. Making education of our children, families, and adults a community priority is absolutely necessary to insure greater opportunity for future generations. County and city governments working together professionally to insure the resources of our entire community are used in the most beneficial manner for all is absolutely essential to winning new opportunities. We must find ways as an entire community to combine our resources to achieve better benefits and quality of life for all. Creating redundant services in our city and county is divisive for all by creating physical barriers in our community and decreases the opportunity to maximize precious few resources. We must find ways to unify our community’s resources, not further divide them.