Georgia County Government - Fall 2013 - (Page 12)

DIRECTOR’S DESK ACCG and Collaborative Interaction By Ross King Executive Director As leaders in your community you have the opportunity to set the tone and lead the way to realizing your county’s, and even region’s, success. 12 COLLABORATION IS A term that rings often in the ears of government officials. When sounded, it is associated with language such as building partnerships, achieving goals, realizing success and producing outcomes. All are very relative to and instrumental in assisting government officials realize the overall purpose of public service. Through interactive collaboration, ACCG continues to enhance the services we provide to our county officials, and ultimately Georgia’s citizens, as we carry out our efforts in advancing Georgia’s counties. Why Focus on Collaboration? There are multiple benefits in enlisting the assistance and expertise of others. Collaboration produces a confluence of ideas that can help position our organization as an emblem for successful government throughout Georgia. It can catapult our organization to heights we have only imagined. By working jointly with other professional organizations throughout the state, we have been able to provide comprehensive service to our most valuable audience, our vast membership. Some benefits in collaborating include achieving innovation, having balance in your decision making processes, and an inclusive approach to strategizing and, or, problem solving. ACCG’s interactive collaboration with other state organizations such as the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA), Georgia State Firefighters Association (GSFA), Georgia Sheriff’s Association (GSA), and the Georgia School Board Association offers practical examples of the benefits of collaborating. Furthermore, our relationships with the public service outreach unit at the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government also offer our members a realization of successful partnerships. Achieving Innovation. Collaboration between ACCG and the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) resulted in the creation of a program that is beneficial to meeting the insurance needs of county and city officials. ACCG and GMA’s Local Risk Government Management Services (LGRMS) is a prime example of how collaboration can lead to successful partnerships and positive outcomes. As we prepare for our centennial celebration, LGRMS is celebrating its 25th anniversary. Established in 1988, this program is a joint effort between the association and GMA. It is a valued training and loss control service for city and county officials and their staff members, offering services such as health and wellness seminars and workshops on topics such as worker’s compensation. GEORGIA COUNTY GOVERNMENT Balanced Decision Making. Our training programs and conferences offered in concert with the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government (CVIOG) offer you as county officials insight to what it means to make balanced decisions. Majority, if not all, of our training programs cover a wide variety of topics ranging from public safety to budget and finance. The training programs and conferences often enlist the expertise of CVIOG staff and State of Georgia agency leadership to coordinate and lead the discussions occurring in these arenas. With this comes an emphasis and reassertion that as county officials your decision making process is not limited to the local level. Other factors must always be considered. Additionally, balanced decision making helps rule out biases and partisanship where necessary to allow for effective governing. Inclusive Approach to Strategizing/Problem Solving. As elected officials, you are responsible for considering and implementing policy that guides the governance of your constituents. This encompasses all policy areas which includes dealing with the professional associations that represent special groups with interests in each of those areas. You must consider all angles. Joint work between ACCG and the Georgia Sherriff’s Association (GSA) offer a practical example of this. In previous years, ACCG has collaborated with GSA and its executive committee members to discuss developing a mediation process to manage conflicts between Boards of Commission and Sheriff’s Offices, mental health challenges caused by state budget cutbacks, and the ACCG inmate health care program in addition to others. Producing Outcomes and Realizing Success. What is the take away for counties? As leaders in your community you have the opportunity to set the tone and lead the way to realizing your county’s, and even region’s, success. By partnering with your area municipalities, constitutional officers, and local school boards, you are taking the necessary steps to implementing innovative initiatives that offer unique services to your constituents. Attending the various commissioners’ training programs and conferences will equip you with the information to realize balanced decision making. Lastly, it is imperative to remember that your role as an elected official means that you represent an array of people with varying views. Considering all perspectives will allow you to implement inclusive problem solving methods to assist you in governing effectively. ■

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Georgia County Government - Fall 2013

President’s Message
Director’s Desk
UGA’s Archway Partnership: Empowerment for Georgia’s Communities
Oglethorpe County: Focusing on the Benefi ts of Protecting Rural Roots
Eliminating Risks: LGRMS Celebrates 25 Years
Where Do We Stand? One Year after Georgia’s Criminal Justice Reform
Understanding the Impacts of Juvenile Justice Reform
New Jail Facilities: Counties Focus on New Technology and Capacity to Expand
2013 Legislative Service Award Recipients
Hospital Survival: Informed County Commissioners Can Preserve Local Health Care
Federal New: More Gridlock and Uncertainty May Be Expected in Washington for FY 2014
Slice by Slice: Students Learn About the Signifi cance of Agriculture on Pizza Farms
Talking Trees with Georgia’s County Commissioners
Partner News: Value at the Heart of the Unique Gas South-ACCG Partnership
Commercial Swimming Pool Renovations Do’s and Don’ts
Counties & The Law: The Supreme Court, the Voting Rights Act and Georgia Counties
Legal News: Bidding in Georgia: What to Do When the Lowest
Conference Preview: Legislative Leadership
News & Notes
Index of Advertisers

Georgia County Government - Fall 2013