City government appears to no longer be intent on rushing process on its proposals

This is not an original thought, either.

But sometimes it almost seems the most original things people do are mistakes.

Still, perhaps what’s even more authentic about mistakes is what we learn from them.

Just a month ago, Morgantown’s government looked to have taken a wrong turn and decided to just keep going.

Since then, however, it’s obvious that Morgantown’s City Council and its city manager’s office have learned some valuable lessons.

No, that’s not to say all the initiatives the city is still pursuing are grounded in good policy and priorities. But there is a discernible difference in its approach to presenting plans and attempting to win a consensus for them.

At last weekend’s town hall, both the mayor and city manager responded to some tough questions with reasoned and policy-driven answers.

On annexation, the mayor said there will be no rush to add areas bordering the city into its purview.

“What we’re doing is looking at this in a very studied manner. The idea is to do planning and not simply knee-jerk reactions,” he said.

On police and fire pensions, the city manager admitted that this is a “looming problem” and the city is working to find “a sustainable funding source.”

That includes looking at all fees and revenues to ensure they can support city services.

At council’s July 10 meeting, despite initial efforts to hurriedly advance a levy referendum for recreation on the November ballot, cooler heads prevailed.

The city manager and others prevailed on council to take into account this move is coming at the 11th hour.

Not to mention a lot of pieces of this puzzle were not just in place, but were still missing.

Council ultimately voted, 6-0, to have the administration work with BOPARC to prepare a timetable and gather data.

At council’s June 27 meeting, members voted to postpone discussions about creation of a land reuse and preservation agency until July 24.

That move was to allow more time for public vetting on this proposed agency that ultimately will be granted only limited powers.

All of this comes on the heels of a contentious session June 19 spurred by a public outcry against a proposed

$5.2 million purchase of 40 acres of forest.

True, sometimes decisions must be made in a crisis with little to no delay. And sometimes truly unpopular decisions come to a straight up or down vote.

However, government is designed to not only be deliberative but also to have the relevant facts and consensus needed to support its decisions.

Otherwise, its process looks to be long on words and short of convincing.

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