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Even tough choices prove beneficial

The City of Nicholasville hosted a workshop Monday night where the mayor and city commissioners discussed city initiatives and funding priorities for the year ahead.

A meeting I thought might last 20-30 minutes, ended up lasting more than an hour, and not only board members, but residents in the audience also weighed in with their opinion on what should be the best course of action and where to appropriate funds in 2019. (You can read a full story in next week’s edition.)

One thing is certain: change is coming. I just hope the elected officials make the right choices.

Many ideas were thrown around as to what would be a good idea to fund first instead of many other items on the “to do” list for the city. I sat quietly and listened to everyone voice their opinion. Some spoke loudly, while others I heard mumbling under their breath in the audience. A rebuttal of sorts to something someone had just spoken.

I am not going to lie and tell you the choices discussed will make every resident happy. I am also not going to lie and tell you I agreed with everything they said. However, as someone who is still trying to play catch up with the history of this town, including its politics, I will tread lightly when voicing my opinion about the difficult choices being made this year in city hall.

Three major interests were discussed as important areas needing funding in the upcoming year. Although all commissioners agreed they would not be able to tackle everything, they seemed to have a common goal in mind as to what needed to be addressed first — raises for city employees in varying departments to bring their salary up to a competitive rate throughout the state.

To do so, certain measures are going to be taken and are still being discussed. Even with the details still hanging in the air, I can honestly say I support this decision and hope the rest of the nation’s employers follow suit in the salaries they are providing their employees.

I’ve mentioned this in previous columns, and I may sound like a broken record to some, although I stand with many Americans who are tired of working two or more jobs just to make ends meet and still not having enough.

Some may argue the current generation is to blame, and if it was not for us all being so consumer driven and needing the latest and greatest gadgets, we would not need to make as much money as believe we should.

For example, I grew up with one TV in the front room of our house where we all took turns watching shows. Even when cable became a huge commodity that many other households had, we were still operating with only four stations — the basics.

When most of my friends had computers and printers at home, I was making trips to the local library to do my school work that needed to be typed and printed out to hand into my teacher.

Fast forward 20 years, and I have four TVs in my house, three computers, and I cannot count how many tablets, video game systems and smartphones we own.

Still, even as generations change, it becomes impossible for an acceptable wage to stay the same. I am sure many people thought the same way about cars, radios and TVs when they were first invented — but that still didn’t stop wage increases and did not prevent employers from paying and providing for their employees the way they should.

American greed is alive and well and will always be something we fight against.

But just because the people up top need to make some tough decisions in order to help the current salary situation, that doesn’t mean the residents should grumble about the choices they make — as long as they are made with honest good intentions for everyone within the city.

As the city continues its debate on how to better serve its residents, including those working for the people of Nicholasville, my hope and prayer is they are fair and just in their choices.

If done right, even the toughest choices will only benefit the residents for many years to come.

Brittany Fuller is the community editor of The Jessamine Journal and Jessamine Life magazine. She can be reached at brittany.fuller@jessaminejournal.com.