GUEST VIEW: The clowns continue to run the circus

By Ronnie Lewis

It’s 105 degrees outside and your air conditioner just went out. Are you going to call your buddy that has never repaired or replaced an air conditioner? Or are you calling an experienced A/C man?

Well Odessa, the City Council called their good buddy. Tuesday night they hired unqualified John Beckmeyer as our City Manager! They didn’t care about you. They didn’t care about your family. And they darn sure didn’t care about Odessa. They only cared about adding another crony to their cabal.

How many times have you screamed out “why can’t politicians and government officials run government like we run our households and businesses”? I know I was thinking that last night which led me to question the City Council on a personal level. I read their bios and wondered if they would risk inexperience when it comes to their own families and their own endeavors. I came up with some observations and some questions for a few council members.

Mayor Joven’s bio doesn’t offer much of a personal work history but his bio does proudly and respectfully mention his father as a “Boxing Coach Legend” I ask Joven if his father would have hired a boxing trainer to train his boxers that had never boxed, never trained or spent time in the gym ?

Councilman Connell’s bio states he’s a Marine, much respect for his service. Now considering Odessa has approximately 800 employees, I ask if Connell was in charge of a unit of 800 Marines and Connell was tasked to appoint a leader for the 800 man battalion, would he appoint someone that wasn’t a Marine and had never been to boot camp to lead the battalion? What would that do to morale?

Councilman Matta recently announced that he is starting his own supply business. Congratulations Mark Matta, but I guarantee you are not looking for an inexperienced crony to run your new business, control your inventory, invoices, and manage your employees. Not now, not ten years from now.

Councilwoman Swanner gets a pass because her bio states her last business venture was owner of a Wienerschnitzel (hot dogs) and I’m sure with all due respect, Odessa’s new City Manager is qualified to manage a fast food hot dog chain. But I’m absolutely positive Swanner did not consider her constituents that encompass the entire city when she approved an unqualified crony managing our city and giving him an annual salary of $238,000. My opinion is Denise Swanner appointed a crony and went along with “group think” she gets from Jeff Russell and Tisha Crow.

Why is it so difficult for elected officials to run government like we run our households and private businesses? Hardworking Odessans not only have to deal with cronyism in Washington DC, but the current Odessa City Council has put cronyism on our doorsteps. Odessa deserves better Odessa should demand better.

On another note, I’m wondering if this appointment sets the stage for Tisha Crow and her cabal to run Beckmeyer’s wife against Brooks Landgraf in 2024? To be continued…

Ronnie Lewis is a longtime Odessa businessman.