The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


February 12, 2014

Your View: In the dark

JOPLIN, Mo. — Upon reading Wednesday’s Globe (Feb. 5), I was astonished to find out that under the cover of night, five members of our city council had fired City Manager Mark Rohr. I find it interesting that four of the five council members are the same few who failed in the carbon-copy attempt in August.

Is it a coincidence that this comes right before the 2014 elections in which a few council members are seeking another term? Is this a last hurrah for those likely to be voted out? They have nothing to lose if they foresee themselves being ousted from office.

I fully understand that mistakes may have been made, but I do believe Rohr has acted in Joplin’s best interests. I cannot honestly say the same about a few council members.

After the catastrophic tornado, we Joplin residents pulled together with Rohr and the City Council seemingly working in sync. We all united with the one hope of bringing Joplin back as best as we could. Our people and the reconstruction of our broken city were our top priorities. It is so sad that these days a divided City Council has divided a still-fragile community.

Rohr’s firing was a significant step affecting the future of Joplin — perhaps it was even the right step — but none of us was aware of this major development. Therein lies the problem. We elected these officials to speak for us, yet it is after the fact and with no explanation that we learn what has materialized over weeks. To hide under “it’s a personnel issue and we cannot discuss it” is in itself incongruous.

I cannot sit idly by and watch as a few council members totally upset the city at a critical time in its growth and improvement without an explanation for their actions. To date, the overall excuse by some is that Rohr is a bully. Well, my answer to that is simply: Get over it.

Perhaps without his strong personality we could not have progressed nearly as rapidly as we have, but then again, that is not really the issue. I agree with Anson Burlingame (Globe, Feb. 7). Now is the time to hold a public debate on a recall. It’s time for residents of Joplin to have a say in what is happening in our city and to us.

Teresa Babcock



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  • Your View: Bad way to get revenue

    I received two fliers through the mail today asking me to vote “yes” on Amendment 7, which would add a three-quarter-cent tax to Missouri’s sales tax to help maintain roads and bridges.

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  • Our View.jpg Our View: No need for No. 9

    “Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended so that the people shall be secure in their electronic communications and data from unreasonable searches and seizures as they are now likewise secure in their persons, homes, papers and effects?”

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