Mandy Matson: Hard-working division

January 16, 2014 

Your Jan. 10 editorial “Cart, horse” perfectly captured some of my concerns about the formation of a public-private nonprofit to lead our state’s economic development.

While I have no experience with some divisions within the Commerce Department, I have strong feelings about the Division of Tourism, Film and Sports Development. I work for a small nonprofit that draws thousands of tourists to our rural county each year, and I have been mightily impressed by how this division works on our behalf. Because its customer service orientation rivals that of any for-profit company, the proposal to “privatize” these jobs concerns me most. Money has been set aside for their severance, so I have to assume the intent is to fire these knowledgeable state employees and “give them the opportunity” to apply for a “private side” position.

That may look just fine on a spreadsheet, but I hope our legislators consider that these are real people with families, accrued benefits and valuable experience they put to work for the state of North Carolina every day. As a taxpayer and a fan of how these talented employees benefit our state, I am dismayed at the prospect of change when I have yet to see evidence that it would improve the excellent service this division already provides.

Mandy Matson

Director of Communications, Conservators’ Center, Caswell County

Cary

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