Yes we are, and sometimes a few of those steps go backwards…and then we get them turned around again, and we take a few more forward. That is all you can expect of a town that was as far behind as Comanche, Texas was when Rob Evans took the reins four months ago. Four months later, I sat down with Evans to get his take on what he sees as progress.
“It’s been four months, and it’s been baby steps, but we are going forward. We’ve been able to top a small portion of Grand Street and plan to do that much more on our next budget. The city has also cleaned up several properties. On some of these, we have collected large fines. Others will have liens placed against them and unless the fees and fines are paid, the city will seize the property and sell it. That is huge progress, and no one is exempt from our ordinances.
“I don’t want to be seen as hard, but we ARE going to get things done here, and we ARE going to clean the town. Of course, there are those who feel that I am picking on them, but I explain that I simply make a list. Someone has to be first on the list, even if the property across the street is just as bad. We have to start somewhere.
“I also want people to know that I am here to help. Sometimes there are very real problems, and I want to help work those out. I’ve even gone and done cleaning myself when I knew there was a need.”
And I have to say that it is true. Rob Evans is not too good to put on his work clothes and roll up his sleeves with the rest of us when there is a need that arises.
“Of course, our street issues are much harder, and we can’t go in and totally redo every street even though that is what we need. We can, however, often work out a problem if people will come in and talk to me. Plus, it just makes sense. If your yard is clean, I can move on to the next problem. Those who refuse to get themselves up to code slow the progress for everyone else.
“The bottom line is that I want Comanche to forget being reactive as has been the norm in the past, and I want us to learn to be proactive so that we never fall this far behind again. I would also encourage more of our citizens to adopt the thoughts of President John F. Kennedy.”
Ask not what your country can do for you but ask rather what you can do for your country.-JFK
And as an aside, I’ll break back in long enough to say that it is an amazing, amazing thing what a difference a few volunteers are making in Comanche. Can you just imagine what we could do if every citizen became a volunteer as well?