Joe Bippus’ standing in the community
To the Editor:
I receive the Commercial in hard copy and read it daily as I have for several years. I enjoy the local coverage and especially the sports coverage by Scott Hassinger. I don’t think that I have ever written a letter to a newspaper editor, but many of the references in the Commercial over the last several months to city manager, Joe Bippus, concern me enough to write you. I do not know Joe personally, but have friends who know him well and have good things to say about his character. It seems the articles written are often slanted against Joe, often without much substantiation, but more so are based on comments and opinions from Mayor Tom Lowry. I do not know Tom or have anything against him. My concern is that his opinions appear to outweigh Joe’s standing in the community. There is a lot of mistrust in our public servants these days based on what people read and I don’t believe we need more of that promoted without good basis. It’s not good for our community or in encouraging good folks to serve in public office. I appreciated the fact that in Wednesday’s article titled “Abel selected as third district commissioner” that you printed Joe’s comments in response to Tom’s. My concern is that this article is yet another example of one where Joe’s credibility was questioned on the front page (“Lowry: Bippus ‘misled’ commission concerning second job”). Anyone reading this who does not know Joe would be led to believe Joe’s is a “misleading” guy with nothing more than Tom’s opinion to justify putting this front and center before the reader. Not a solid or ethical reporting approach from my perspective. Thank you for allowing me to voice this concern and for continuing to put together our local paper.