Lies, legal threats and being kept in the dark

By JEFF JOBE
jobe@jobeinc.com

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

I am proud to have dedicated my career to the only profession specifically mentioned in our Bill of Rights; the free press.

As I slide too quickly down the backside of the half-century mark of life, I find myself with more patience than ever before and for this, I give credit to experience.

I have come to realize with age comes experiences and with those experiences come lessons learned.  I’ve learned not to judge quickly, but instead give time a chance because truth cannot be rushed.

Much like the resume of a 20-year old; with time those bullets of achievements fade with real world accomplishments taking their place.

I had all but forgotten most those early bullets until this week when an attorney for Glasgow Daily Times called my Progress team a liar. And then, a few hours later, we had a potential legal threat thrown at us from the Glasgow Electric Plant Board Superintendent Billy Ray.

For the issues relating to the accusations from the GDT attorney, I felt compelled to share some of those once important resume bullets regarding my training when presenting our argument for attaining the official newspaper of record.

Of course I’m disappointed the court didn’t have a clear picture and I am somewhat hurt by such absurd accusations, yet my experience helps me remain calm.  I’m calm because I know our numbers are correct and all we need to do the next time is to bring the actual backup we already use when calculating our numbers.  We just didn’t feel it was necessary when dealing with sworn affidavits as referenced in the law.

In regards to GEPB, Ray is making an argument for some possible discrepancies with the data on the website www.electricitylocal.com although he seems to neglect that the site carries a copyright of 2019.  His complaint is printed in its entirety in this week’s issue of the BCP.

He hasn’t denied the use of personal emails for secret communications with select board members and his board attorney.  A fact reported in the same article as the discrepancies he is alleging.  The same communication he omitted from an official KRS Open Request that was shared attacking other board members, our current Mayor, and a former Mayor.  Certainly not something a Superintendent or General Manager for the boards I sit on would do and certainly never consider making a public legal threat without a board approval.

Oh the irony, GEPB Chairman D.T. Froedge, Marlin Witcher, and Mark Biggers are being accused of conducting business in the dark with little more than a statement in which Froedge admits to having misspoke.  While we have an absolute fact that Ray is the one communicating in the shadows of transparency.

The emotional human side of me wants to prove our newspaper’s integrity and I’m comfortable if the time comes for court, we will.  Yet, for a publisher to take legal action regarding these issues it would give the impression the Progress is upset with the Fiscal Court, and the GEPB.

We aren’t upset at all, heck now all of Barren County knows we are the growing newspaper in the county while the GDT continues to lose hundreds of readers every single year.  Each October we are required by law to calculate and print a publisher’s statement and we will have every single newspaper accounted for at our next Fiscal Court visit.

While Ray’s soon-to-be public demands and legal threat will make it very clear that the Progress is simply trying to get truth to our readers.  We stand beside those wrongfully accused and do all we can to encourage cooperation through strength.  Either Ray doesn’t have the skills to quantify an average rate as others or he has something to hide.

We believe Glasgow has been kept in the dark for far too long.

Jeff Jobe is founder and CEO of Jobe Publishing, Inc. His commentary reflects his personal views and does not reflect the views of personal or professional associations and affiliations. Reach him at jobe@jobeinc.com. Read his previously published commentary at www.sckentucky.com

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