It is mystifying and disturbing the way the St. Helena City Council is devoid of responsibility, and passes the job of research and exploration of city (community-owned) real estate properties, their condition and effective utilization to a facilities committee.

One wonders why our esteemed new city manager and the body of city employees/bureaucrats are unable to handle this elementary task and come up with the results.

So now the City Council has appointed 11 people from our community, dropping the responsibility in their laps.

However, the City Council does not have full confidence in this group’s ability to effectively and independently function, so a consultant is being hired, for approximately $90,000 to do the job. This distrust must not be very inspirational for the facilities committee.

This is the way I see it, because this is the way it is.

The general public reaction to this “another committee” is a shrug and the roll of the eyes -- not again.

Now the council, the city manager and his disciples are waiting for the report from the facilities committee and their minders.

And we wait, wait, and wait.

Ferenc Brunner

St. Helena

Editor’s note: The facilities committee is properly named the St. Helena Asset Planning Engagement (SHAPE) Committee. The City Council approved a contact with EMG to perform a Facilities Condition and Needs Assessment for various city buildings and properties. The contract is for $80,869 and staff is authorized to amend the contract for an additional $10,000, if necessary.

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