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County Commission Communications
A Periodic Column Written by Ed Douglas, Presiding Commissioner

APRIL 11, 2018

Recently, our Main Street organization hosted groups from other states that were attending the National Main Street Convention in Kansas City. A number of us made presentations to these groups and hosted tours around our Main Street District. These groups were very impressed with what our community has been able to accomplish and asked a lot of questions on how we were able to get so much done.

While I was giving a walking tour to one of these groups, I asked them what impressed them most about what we had presented to them. Their answer was eye opening. What they told me was that they could not believe how well everyone in our town seemed to work together. They mentioned the City and County government's cooperation with each other, the local foundations that help provide significant funding for various needed projects, the fact that the Chamber, Main Street, and Tourism organizations all operate out of the same office, and the City and County's financial support through contracts for service of organizations like the Chillicothe Development Corporation, Main Street and Economic Development Projects.

Their comments caused me to think a little more about the concept of working together. My first thought was I am very much aware of several county governments very near to us in which they do not get along at all - commissioners who won't even speak to each other and even have lawsuits directed toward various elected officials by other officials.

I told these visitors that our community's situation is not perfect all the time - people are people; and, occasionally, there are disagreements; but generally, I believe we all do get along very well and that is a part of our community's success.

I was asked a further question by the group which was how do we manage to succeed at getting along. Was it some type of organizational structure that facilitated this cooperation? My answer was that cooperation is a decision made by individuals - a choice made person by person to try and work together, even when it is not easy. I believe we are fortunate to have many good people in our community who understand the importance of working together for common goals. They understand that "the rising tide raises all ships" and you "get more flies with honey rather than vinegar."

This cooperation is an asset that we possibly take for granted. We shouldn't. The past, of course, is not a guarantee of the future; but I believe that if we all understand the importance of continuing to work together, this will help insure future success for our City and County. Thanks to all of you who help in working so well together.

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