Town of Emmitsburg
300A S. Seton Ave Emmitsburg, Maryland

January 2005

Negativity impacts staff morale and workload

Many of you are aware there have been several negative articles printed in the local newspapers about several of Emmitsburg's Town staff and elected officials. Most of this information is focused around the ethics commission's "investigation." Therefore, I do not feel it would be appropriate for me at this time to get into any specific information. I have made a very assertive effort not to get myself or my position as mayor involved in the ethics commission's "investigation." By town ordinance, it is the ethics commission's responsibility to review every complaint/ allegation filed. It is the Town's responsibility to cooperate with them.

This article is not to repeat information you have already read in the newspapers or to get you to support one issue over another. Each month I write an article about current town matters. This month I am going to tell you how the negative information has affected the town and its staff. It does not matter if the information is correct or not, it still creates a very negative impact.

For the past several months I have had several staff members come to me and express their concerns that they feel it has become very difficult for them to be able to comfortably accomplish their day-to-day responsibilities. With the long list of allegations made about staff and elected officials, it is widely felt that their positions have been placed under a microscope. As government officials (staff or elected), Emmitsburg officials have always accepted the fact that we are held to a higher standard, within reason. And that is the question, are the requests and demands that are being placed on the town reasonable?

Working as a team, the town of Emmitsburg has made several improvements over the past several years. The negative pressure placed on the town is diminishing the momentum needed to accomplish future goals. I am not suggesting that we all just get along and agree on everything. I am saying we must find the common ground that it takes to allow us to work together professionally and respect each other.
The negative comments are dividing the residents of the town. The dividing of a town is what makes a small town lose its small town atmosphere. While the size of a town can change a town's characteristic atmosphere, dividing a small town can destroy it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to call the town office, or e-mail me at

Jim Hoover

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