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Ignorance is not an excuse, or an explanation

web posted July 22, 2009
OPINION – It did not take long after EdgefieldDaily.com broke the story of an illegal dump located behind JET Middle School on Monday for local TV media and others to take notice, including law enforcement and DHEC. By Tuesday morning the School was ordered to shut down the illegal dump and pay for its clean up. That is just what the school district needs right now, to have to pay to clean up a dump that never should have existed in the first place.

There are no estimates on how much the clean up will cost or whether or not fines or criminal charges are brought to bear. It will not be until the investigation has been completed and the site re-inspected before those determinations are made.

The cost will be placed upon the backs of the taxpayers in Edgefield County though they had no hand in creating, operating, or overseeing (or not overseeing as the case may be) the illegal dump. That is just plain wrong.

It matters little whether Facilities Director James Courtney knew creating the dump was illegal or not, he has admitted that he knew and approved of the site being established and operated. It is, after all, his job to oversee all facilities in the county’s school district and the buck stops at his desk. Or at least it should.  
Not only should the “buck” stop at his desk, but the bill should go there as well. Why should the taxpayers be stuck with the cost of cleaning up his mess?

Let’s hope the accountability does not stop there.

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