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Finally, something new is on the local news channel - Odessa American: Kenbrodnax

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Finally, something new is on the local news channel

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Posted: Sunday, October 7, 2007 12:00 am

Years — no, make that decades — of observation have led to the theory that the local taxing entities work on some sort of rotation to keep the public kettle boiling in a community that is seldom boring.

Case in point: Ector County Independent School District has been on the hot seat for quite a while now — two superintendents have been bought out of their contracts, we have trustees who take turns being on different sides of various issues (they seem to turn on their one-time allies quicker than participants in a paint-ball match) and one elected official gave up her position to benefit the Permian football team.

Now the school district has had a few breathers during the extended wresting match courtesy of Ector County and the Ector County Hospital District. Just the other day, county commissioners voted themselves a hefty raise, but initially projected a hike twice as big so they could say that they really sacrificed and cut it in half. That’s like pricing a Jaguar and then settling for the Corvette that you wanted in the first place.

But these interludes have been fairly brief in shelf life, which means the school types have to go back on the hot seat.

Anyway, maybe ECISD has finally lost its tenure in the tag team match by giving way to a well-rested City of Odessa news-making team.

Seems that City Attorney Larry Long has been suspended for a month without pay. And nobody’s talking.

Now here’s where the hope lies for ECISD to get some extended time out of the harsh glow of the spotlight.

The more all these officials over at the city deny the public even rudimentary knowledge as to what Long has supposedly done to earn his suspension, the bigger the news item will grow.

Early reaction by the municipal folks seems to indicate they’re playing hide-and-seek behind lawyers. They’ve been advised not to say nothing about this whole deal. That’s not grammatical, but stonewalling the public isn’t exactly good form, either.

What’s surprising about this is that the City Council and others at City Hall have been the most forthcoming of any of our elected bodies for the past few years. This period of serenity, naturally, came after a rocky period when Odessa’s former police chief went away to the federal lockup on child pornography charges and a city manager was dispatched to the same land of limbo where school superintendents are put out to pasture.

Now some current council members understand that the sooner you let the cat out of the bag on a controversial issue, the sooner the public will forget there was a cat in the first place.

But if they insist on continued secrecy involving this latest development, you can bet that ECISD is preparing a thank-you card and maybe even taking up a collection for a bouquet of flowers to send the city’s way.

Odessa, TX

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