By Steve Hunley
The Knox County Commission made a wise choice in selecting Craig Leuthold to serve as Trustee following the resignation of John J. Duncan, III.
Leuthold has the necessary experience to do a good job for taxpayers in an office of vital importance to our community. A former member of the Knox County Commission, Leuthold worked in the Trustee’s office and was most recently Communications Director for the Property Assessor. Leuthold has the necessary knowledge to be effective, run the office efficiently and maximize the returns to the taxpayers. More importantly, Craig Leuthold is absolutely personally honest. Leuthold’s personal honesty will help to restore confidence to the Trustee’s office.
Doubtless the Knoxville News-Sentinel and many of the leaders of the political establishment will try and use the opportunity to press for the constitutional offices to be appointed yet again, after having failed to accomplish their goal countless times. The voters have rejected the idea before by referendum and that crowd has never been able to accept the verdict of the people.
This week’s Knoxville Focus poll shows without a question of a doubt that Knoxvillians and Knox Countians still like the idea of choosing their own officials, for better or worse. Substituting the judgment of a select few for that of the people is rarely ever a good idea. Clearly appointing the Superintendent of Schools has not been the panacea many of the self-proclaimed good government folks promised it would be; we have more failing schools now than we did when the superintendent was elected, despite spending more than half a billion dollars per year.
Folks can pick at the process, but it still beats having one person make the choice for all of the people.