‘Oh, woe is me’ despite questionable decisions

It would be hilarious, if not so pathetic, to read that clerk Lankford was the real “victim” of duly elected Sheriff Haskell’s lynching. Sheriff Haskell’s reputation and livelihood were destroyed and yet clerk Lankford whines that she was called names and was in fear of her life. Of the list of names she was called, I would add delusional, arrogant, and vindictive.

This is the same Lankford that miscounted votes in the three-to-five commissioner election and was cleared of wrongdoing by sycophants selected by her then-sheriff husband. That whole deal really stinks. One can only wonder if this vote-count misdeed was due to incompetence or willful attempt to influence the election outcome. In either case, she should not be allowed to count votes without very strong independent oversight.

Commissioner Bousman had the gall to call for the max sentence for duly elected Sheriff Haskell and said that Haskell intimidated sheriff’s office employees. Well, if memory serves, the sheriff’s office had at least one mole that was leaking everything about Haskell to someone on the outside (wanna guess who that might be?). So why wouldn’t sheriff’s office employees opposed to Haskell’s election voice negative information about Haskell? Bousman implies that all the sheriff’s office employees were intimidated – that seems unlikely.

Bousman also neglects the fact that he and the other two commissioners broke the law and were sanctioned for it, in firing the Roundup as the venue for county announcements. That decision to change county announcement venue, despite a renewal contract, was clearly vindictive in my opinion and ended up costing the county taxpayers a bundle for legal fees, as did the past litigation for awarding a contract to a local vendor even though a non-county vendor had a lower bid. I presume the commissioners also had to take an oath to uphold (not break) local and state regulations. Furthermore, Bousman’s recent statement that “let’s put the local guy to work” says to me that the least of his concerns are the cost of these contracts to the county taxpayers.

The upshot of these past misguided commissioner decisions (many of them non-transparent) is that they should be forced to pay all fees for losing litigation out of their own pockets. What is good for the gander is good for the chickens.

Stephen Crane will be greatly missed for his willingness to call out major dysfunction in our county government. Commissioner Noble’s questioning of the inflated county Road and Bridge budget strongly emphasizes the need for increased close scrutiny, transparency and justification for how our tax money is spent.


Tom Hakonson


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