When a member of the community puts themselves forward to volunteer to serve on a committee or board, what responsibilities and loyalties do they really have? Although I readily admit to a limited amount of knowledge on how all other boards work, even before I was appointed to HADCO’s board, I had a fairly good handle on how they operated from my years of appearing before the body as a resident and a citizen. However, I was not prepared for the question of where a commissioner’s loyalty lies. It seems as though some of my fellow commissioners think I owe more, or as much, loyalty to them as I do to the taxpayers who fund the program and the citizens of our community that benefit from the opportunity to have safe, affordable housing.
I firmly believe that this attitude is not the right one. When you are appointed or elected to serve your government, your loyalty should be to the public at large, not the government body you are serving on. I do not believe that the job of a public official is to show unquestioned loyalty to the government or any agency of the government. It is the job of a public official to provide the accountability for and to the public. If you are serving the public, then it is your job to question what you are being told, seek out additional sources of information, and go against the agency and your fellow public officials, and if necessary, be able to stand-alone when ensuring you are fulfilling your fiduciary responsibility.
As a HADCO Commisssioner, I am interested in hearing from the public and residents about any questions, concerns, or comments you have about HADCO. Please feel free to contact me at – firstname.lastname@example.org .