For you the voter to
That’s My Opinion
By Bob Robinson
“I really got angry with you when you asked Diane if she was going to
The gentleman’s reference, of course, was to Commissioner Diane
Delaplane and the announcement a couple of weeks ago that the Office
had agreed to a settlement with Whistleblower Melody Lucas that will
eventually cost the County well over $60,000. According to an email
from the Office it was due to Delaplane and an unnamed County employee
speaking to Lucas about comments made “behind closed doors.”
We knew each other, but not well, and the gentleman wanted to talk
about what has been happening in the Commissioner’s Office. He was one
of three who “caught” me at the store as I was picking up a few things
before going home for the day.
I shouldn’t have been surprised. I already knew the County News Online
website was headed for a record two days… it was… well over 9,000
“hits” in just two days. That’s more than the total number of page
views CNO had in its first full month online just over a year ago.
Then the gentleman added, “however I thought about it and eventually
decided it was a good thing. It needed to be said publicly that Diane
had no intention of resigning.”
That was my point.
If, like me, you read the Commissioner’s meeting minutes, Bob Rhoades’
opinion on this mess and, finally, Melody Lucas’ timeline of what
happened, you – like me – will still have unanswered questions.
IF prosecutable felonies were committed, why was there no prosecution?
IF, as Commissioner Mike Rhoades stated, the Whistleblower act was
admirable; and if, as Lucas stated, the Commissioners were adamant
against her application for the position, my unanswered question would
The gentleman then noted that the job of any employee is to do the best
job possible for his or her employer, adding that elected office
holders were “employees” of the taxpayer.
“I don’t think these guys are doing it,” he said.
He went on to note that Delaplane was doing the right thing by keeping
quiet because that’s what their attorney told them to do. He emphasized
“their” attorney… then added, “so why didn’t Rhoades keep his mouth
Wouldn’t this whole thing have blown over by now? he questioned. I was
skeptical. There are too many citizens in Darke County that have
started to pay attention to what their elected representatives were
So will it ever blow over?
There are a lot of angry taxpayers out there right now. For a variety
of reasons… not all of them having to do with the Lucas settlement. I
don’t believe it will go away immediately… however, in the Monday
session of the Commissioners, there were no citizens in attendance.
If the same occurred on Wednesday, then I’ll have to admit I could be
mistaken. Historically, citizens become irate over an event that for
whatever reason sees the light of day, then all is forgotten (except by
a few) as they go back to their daily routines.
Only to surface again the next time something they don’t like sees the
light of day. Makes you wonder what else is happening that we know
nothing about… and maybe should. And maybe will surface weeks, months,
even years down the road.
So should it blow over? I guess that’s for you, the voter, to decide.
That’s my opinion. What’s yours?