San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas

April 27th, 2010
Letter to the editor: The county and customer service

To the editor:

I feel compelled to write you after hearing the concerns of a dear friend. As you know, the county is planning a large new office building to help county staff do their jobs, but also to improve (we hope) their delivery of services to the public. What you may not have heard much about is the $2 million they are spending for another new building nowhere near other services.

They are planning a new addition to be attached to the Road Department building on Yarrington Road, and they will move the Environmental Health Department out there when it’s finished. It seems to me that $2M tax dollars would be better spent to improve customer service rather than move the service(s) that far out of town and away from other services. What ever happened to the notion of “one stop shopping?” If they really need a new building they should build it on land closer to other county services.

My friend is concerned about losing his/her job by complaining to county officials about what many other colleagues see as bad customer service. Please don’t think this is just some silly election year mud slinging. This is about doing the right thing with our hard earned money.
Thank you for listening.

Melvin Thorpe
San Marcos

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0 thoughts on “Letter to the editor: The county and customer service

  1. I heard that the bill for this building would be closer to 3 million dollars. I know someone who does business here and this office absolutely needs to be close to the other county services in San Marcos….Not Kyle. People who are subdividing, building, developing, or applying for a septic permit all have to visit the County Clerk’s office and the courthouse to file and record their paperwork. And I’m not just talking about visiting, it’s going back and forth from one to the other. Locating the building near Kyle at the county materials yard is the opposite of one stop shopping. And if you’ve seen the county’s road yard on Yarrington, it’s already jam packed with gravel and big trucks. It’s not going to be a convenient or pleasant place to serve the citizens.
    Was the location of this really thought out by anyone? What happened to the theme of one-stop shopping? I see Will Conley advertising his Lube and Carwash repeating, “One Stop Shopping” for all your car needs. Doesn’t he see that one stop shopping would be good for the county citizens, not just his customers?
    What’s wrong with the building on Clovis Barker where they are located now? There doesn’t seem to be any lack of space there. The current location is close to the County Government building that is going to be built on Wonder World Drive. If the Environmental and Development offices are moved, they should be moved into the Proposed Government Building on Wonder World Drive, or at least located right next to it.

  2. This has “Back Room Deal” written all over it. Whether that “deal” is to make it harder on developers, punish the Environmental Health Department or working a friend in position of purchasing the current Environmental Health building for a song/possible trading, it is still highly suspect.

  3. $2 million or $3 million – whatever the amount – why does so little information about this project show up in web searches? We’ve seen lots of details about their other building projects but almost nothing about this one. Maybe this building project wouldn’t survive too much public scrutiny, so the details (wherever they are) are kept under the radar. Hmmm. Stealth mode or illusionist tricks? The taxpayers deserve better than this.

  4. OK, so who is going to go down on Tuesday to commissioners court, use their three minutes of public comment time and ask? There are a couple of folks running for re-election who should just love to give you this information. And if not, you can come back here and let everyone know who was not very forthcoming and transparent.
    Now, if you are like me and work every Tuesday, you may not be able to get down there. Then I am sure someone who can would be willing to go. In fact, I bet there are probably some Tea party folks who would be glad to show up and ask the questions.

    Thanks Melvin. After selling $170 million in bonds ($30 / year for every man, woman, and child in Hays for the next 25 years) $1-2 million just doesn’t seem like a lot to some, does it? It is more “central” to a lot of the growth in the county, but is definitely worth a look into the reasoning. Go to the Commissioners court website, and E-mail the question. Hopefully you will get a fairly straight answer. (Just don’t mention your friend…)

  5. Why in the world would they want to move the Environmental Health offices up to Kyle? Where was the planning study that determined such a whacky location was going to be good service to the public? Well, as oftentimes seems the case, nobody will notice anything until it’s done…….. all the residents will be upset when it’s too late. But it won’t be too late for them to make their opinion known at the polls next fall.

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