The City of Columbus and Lowdnes County have been engaged in an open war for about a year. They’ve squabbled over the language of the restaurant tax, which resulted in significant reduction in the amount of money allocated to the Columbus Visitor’s Bureau. Then they argued over who should pay for the maintenance of the soccer fields, which the county recently agreed to manage. Next, they fought over whether or not the language of tax agreements would reduce the millage devoted to Columbus Public Schools. Now, they’re bickering over whether or not the city is footing its fair share of costs associated with running the library.
In short, you could argue that county leaders believe that the people running the city are guilty of mis-, mal-, or nonfeasance, or that they’re generally incapable, or both. Or you could argue that people in the county merely want their money to be spent in the county. Regardless, the conflicts hurt area residents where they will feel it most painfully and for the longest amount of time: the institutions dedicated to educating and improving the lives of young people.
If people in the county want continued growth and development in the county to continue, starving the city for tax revenues is hardly the wisest policy to pursue in the long term. Conversely, the city needs to be more transparent regarding the wisdom of its stewardship. Both parties are to blame. As with any divorce, the children will suffer the most.