The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO


July 23, 2013

Our View: Shakeup demands answers

A Joplin Public Works employee has been fired and charged with allegedly stealing supplies from the city garage.

David Hertzberg, the city’s public works director, has suddenly been demoted and will be working as the Community Development Block Grant project manager.

Assistant City Manager Sam Anselm will temporarily take over the department as public works director.

And a short email from Joplin City Manager Mark Rohr, who would not take the time away from city budget meetings to address questions, indicates “the administrative team has managed these developments in a manner to create little or no disruption within the City and for our citizens.”

But Rohr’s statement and the reaction from the city to the Globe’s questions on Monday makes us think that it’s the information and Joplin residents, who have a right to know what’s going on, that are being managed.

Hertzberg has been moved to a position that was just approved by the City Council a week ago. During that meeting, some Joplin City Council members questioned whether the position was needed. Now we are left to wonder just how long the staff changes at the Public Works Department were being discussed and when the need to create the CDBG project manager position came about.

Early in the day Monday, details about the misdemeanor charge against a city worker were not being released. Under the Missouri Open Records Law, those details are open to the public. Not until pressed would city officials provided the name of the person charged.

Two more calls finally yielded the information that the worker in the city garage was stopped by Joplin police and a case of oil and a bottle of refrigerant believed to have belonged to the city were found in his vehicle.

The city is also investigating a separate matter in the building department of the Public Works Department. Rohr said in his statement that this “separate matter” has resulted in a loss of revenue to the city. How and how much was much? The city isn’t saying.

This veil of secrecy cast over basic information that belongs to the public should be lifted.

Text Only
  • Our View.jpg Our View: Lone holdout

    Missouri continues to be the only state in the United States that won’t allow a prescription drug database to be established.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Anson Burlingame, guest columnist: Much has changed in U.S. over 14 years

    Does anyone recall the major economic argument during the 2000 presidential campaign between George Bush and Al Gore?

    July 22, 2014

  • Our View: Vote no on Amendment 1

    Proponents of Amendment 1 — the Right to Farm Act — have not made their case. We’ve met with advocates of this amendment to the Missouri constitution and listened to their arguments, but we don’t believe they have adequately answered the central question: Who is it protecting, and from what?

    July 13, 2014

  • Your View: Amendment 5 is deception of the highest order

    Amendment 5, sponsored by Missouri Sen. Kurt Schaefer, R-Columbia, “relating to the right of Missouri citizens to keep and bear arms” provides that “any restriction on these rights shall be subject to strict scrutiny.”

    July 21, 2014

  • Other Views Other Views: No time to turn away

    With the shooting down of a commercial airliner over Ukraine and fighting that has now escalated to a ground war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, it would be easy for most U.S. citizens to throw up their hands and turn their backs.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Your View: Power to defend

    The Globe’s editorial ‘More guns not the answer’ (July 15) was saturated with classic progressive blather.

    July 21, 2014

  • Your View: Thanks for the generosity

    Generally, all we hear about is the bad news, and obviously, there is plenty available. Our church felt this event worthy of public knowledge.

    July 21, 2014

  • Your View: How to upgrade your business

    Let’s see now. When some folks wish to improve the exterior of their properties and have other taxpayers pay for the improvements, they create a community improvement district.

    July 21, 2014

  • Our View.jpg Our view: Street smarts

    If your daily commute has been shortened because you no longer have to wait at 26th Street and Connecticut Avenue for a train to pass, thank your own tax dollars.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Other Views Other Views: Decision fails test

    With the announcement that the State Board of Education has decided not to release individual school test results because of cyberattacks and other problems this spring, educators are scratching their heads, as are taxpayers who footed the bill.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

Local News
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter

A state lawmaker who is one of two doctors in the Oklahoma Legislature is insisting that unaccompanied immigrant minors being housed at Fort Sill be quarantined. Do you think those kinds of measures should be taken?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
NDN Video
Disabled Veterans Memorial Nearing Completion Last Mass Lynching in U.S. Remains Unsolved Home-sharing Programs Help Seniors Ex-NYC Mayor: US Should Allow Flights to Israel Clinton: "AIDS-Free Generation Within Our Reach" Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Airlines Halt Travel to Israel Amid Violence NYPD Chief Calls for 'use of Force' Retraining VA Nominee McDonald Goes Before Congress Bush: Don't Worry, Sugarland Isn't Breaking Up US Official: Most Migrant Children to Be Removed Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era Raw: First Lady Says `Drink Up' More Water Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Holder Urges Bipartisanship on Immigration Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball US Airlines Cancel Israel Flights Obama Signs Workforce Training Law Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City