To the editor:
I would like to thank God, my family and the citizens of Texas County for allowing me to serve as your District 2 Commissioner for the past 16 years. I have always loved to help people, meet new people, learn new things and face new challenges. This position has allowed me to do all of these things.
When I first became a commissioner, I had very little knowledge about county government and I did not know all the aspects of being a county commissioner. For the past 16 years I have asked God to give me the wisdom to make the right decisions, the knowledge to implement the decisions and the courage to stand behind the decisions I made. I believe God has always answered these prayers.
When I first started I was very fortunate to work with County Clerk Don Troutman, who at the time had 20 years experience in county government and he was willing to share his knowledge with me. There were many times Don and I disagreed on things but I believe we both respected each other and I will always be grateful to him.
There have been many changes in Texas County over the last 16 years. Thanks to the voters in Texas County, we have a justice center everyone can be proud of, a nicely remodeled Administrative Building and space for the Texas County 911 Center.
We have more than doubled the deputies and jailers than we had in 2000 and they are receiving higher wages than back then. The sheriff’s department has newer and more vehicles to patrol our county. The county clerk’s office has top of the line voting machines. All the other elected officials have been able to make major improvements to their equipment, software and technical knowledge in their offices.
The commission adopted the Texas County Land Use Plan, that helped to protect the private property rights of their citizens. There are many more changes that have happened since 2000 and I am blessed that I was able to play a small part in these changes.
With good times, there are always some sad times. Two of my saddest days were when we learned, of the passing of Susan Warkentin, recorder of deeds and Don Troutman, county clerk. These were two very dedicated public servants.
I am retiring with many mixed emotions. I have loved serving the citizens of Texas County. I have made so many new friends and have enjoyed working with the other elected officials and all the employees. I know I will miss them all but I will continue to care about them and their families. On the other hand, I will enjoy spending more time with my family and do some traveling.
May God continue to bless Texas County and our country.
LINDA L. GARRETT, LICKING