A reader posted on our facebook page about seeing the mayor at Aldi’s earlier today. Today is Sunday and he drove his city vehicle.
Why is this important?
First, let’s take a look at the short history of mayors driving city vehicles. We recall our previous mayor was relentlessly attacked when she took a city vehicle to respond to a child potentially drowning. All the fire and police had already been dispatched to other calls and her husband is a paramedic. The near drowning was in her neighborhood, so he drove emergency (which he is licensed to do) to try to save a child. What happened? Pitchforks, yelling, complaining. Then another person accused the mayor of always driving a city truck and leaving it parked in her driveway. As it turned out, they didn’t even like her driving her own personal vehicle. So we have established that citizens do not like mayors driving city vehicles – even if it’s to save the life of a child and even if it’s not a city vehicle, but a personal vehicle, right?
This has not stopped the current mayor from driving a city vehicle. He drives it everywhere. He takes it home, he takes it to work. He hauls personal items in it. For example, lawnmowers and liquor store boxes.
He junks it up like he has his own truck. (See here where the his truck and the city truck he drives are parked side-by-side) (same liquor box as the previous picture).
And now he is driving his truck to grocery shop on a Sunday. And not even grocery shopping in our own city, but in a neighboring city! Grocery shopping on a Sunday In a city truck. You know what? We looked over the Employee Handbook and the bottom line is … it doesn’t matter. Yes policy states that people in city vehicles may stop at places, but it specifies that is only if it is on the way to or from work. As in, not out of they way. But it further states that employees are allowed do deviate from the policy WITH PERMISSION FROM THE CITY ADMINISTRATOR OR MAYOR. Guess what that means? He gave himself permission.
Here is a PDF file of the policies and procedures regarding take home vehicles.
So basically the mayor violates the following: “Employees operating take home vehicles will exercise good judgement in utilizing them avoiding any conduct likely to cause unfavorable comment and/or embarrassment to the City of La Vergne.”
Mayor Waldron does not appear to exercise good judgment. He does not appear to be following the city personnel policies. But he is the mayor and as such can give himself permission to do whatever he wants with city resources. How much will this mayor cost taxpayers by the time he leaves office? That is another story for another day.
Meanwhile, Dennis Waldron is who the majority of voters picked to be mayor, like it or not.
Perhaps there are two lessons to be learned.
- Be careful what you ask for because you might get it.
- Every vote counts so if you didn’t vote, next time choose to make your voice heard.
"Let's Talk About Take Home Vehicles",