Long before I started writing a column , I used to cover the Orange County commission. I started back in the late 90s with Linda Chapin, covering Mel Martinez and Rich Crotty as well. As such, I sat through multitudes of county commission meetings.

Yet never in all those years can I recall seeing any of those boards do what Teresa Jacobs are her board are preparing to do Tuesday.

That’s when they are expected to jam a charter amendment on the ballot — without virtually any of the standard vetting.

And it’s all an attempt to thwart a grassroots push for sicktime.

Now I don’t have any beef whatsoever with county officials questioning – or even campaigning against – mandatory sick time. That’s Democracy in action.

But I do have a beef with elected officials circumventing their own checks and balances — especially when they do so in hasty ignorance.

Sound too harsh? Well, consider the following …

Shortly after the county commission started talking about trying to pass a new law to prevent county ordinances from impacting employer-employee relations — one that would negate the sick-time law if it passed  – people started wondering about the proposal’s unintended consequences. So a Sentinel reporter asked amendment proponentJennifer Thompson  if her proposal might inadvertantly harm efforts to employ minorities or veterans (which were widely supported).

Thompson responded:  “I haven’t thought about it.”

Um, that’s a problem.

Click here for the full Orlando Sentinel column. 

Orange County on sick-time: We’ll show you, grass-roots folks
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