Openly Taking Stance Against Commissioner

RECEIVED Thu., Dec. 22, 2005

Dear Editor,
    The current commissioner's [Karen Sonleitner] letter to the editor on Dec. 16 [“Postmarks”] only affirms our membership made the right decision by supporting Sarah Eckhardt's commitment to sound government [“Sheriff's Unions Back Eckhardt for Precinct 2 Comissioner,” News, Dec. 9].
    What's sad about the commissioner's letter is her frail attempt to try to equate our membership's decision to support Sarah Eckhardt with the personal greed of the men and women who protect this community. The commissioner's budget numbers and facts were skewed during negotiations this year, and they're even worse in her letter to you.
    It's our position over the years that the commissioner has increasingly lost touch with her ability to effectively govern on issues relating to the crucial mission of the Sheriff's Office. The Travis County Sheriff's Officers Association and the Sheriffs' Law Enforcement Association represent nearly 90% of the employees of the Sheriff's Office. We take the safety of the citizens of Travis County very seriously. We feel it is our responsibility to ensure our office's mission is represented by our elected officials commensurate to the level of service we provide to their constituents.
    In the case of the commissioners of Precinct 2, just because the commissioner tends to vote in line with other pro-public-safety members of the court, does not mean the commissioner is supporting our employees in a manner that is equal to the unmatched level of public safety services we provide throughout the county.
    Our job as peace officers is sometimes unpopular, but very necessary, much like speaking out against an 11-year incumbent. The fact that both associations are openly taking this stance against the commissioner should alert the party and our citizens of the urgency for immediate change!
Brett Spicer, PAC chairman
Travis County Sheriffs' Law Enforcement Association
Alex Leo, PAC chairman
Travis County Officers' Association
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