Yesterday I made a comment about County Commissions being one of the biggest hindrances towards planning for growth and resource management in the west. I think one of the reasons for that is the lack of strong and sustained media coverage of those Commissions.
I have the sense that no Mayor of Albuquerque can ever go on to win higher office any more because of the constant media coverage on city government. The media have a bulls eye target when covering city affairs, and that is the Mayor. Everyone knows who the Mayor is and they remember it every time they hit a pothole or their garbage pickup gets missed.
When it comes to a County Commission there are anywhere from three to five elected officials and no one strong leader for the media to latch on to for coverage. So there is no one really held accountable. Certainly not the county managers who are hired by the Commission.
Since the counties use their political acumen in the State Legislature to screw the cities they have garnered a lot of power. In Albuquerque's case it was the theft of the municipal water system into a Water Authority that the county thought they could dominate.
Since the television news operations have pretty much checked out on serious local news coverage of government in favor of the sex or bad weather story of the day, then it is really going to be up to the Albuquerque Journal, soon to be our only daily paper, and bloggers to cover these important county government stories.