You are here:  Home  >  Opinion  >  Tom Knighton  >  Current Article

Don’t let the door hit ya

By   /   February 26, 2011  /   Comments

Albany City Manager Al Lott is going away forever. You will never, in all your life, be as thrilled as I am at this news. Lott, a man who has ignored open record laws designed to make government accountable to the people and has made an annoying habit of discriminating against some employees. He’s been horrible in his job, and now we can move on.

It’s my sincerest hope that the City Commission doesn’t make a few mistakes that should be obvious at this point. If they can avoid those, we should be in good shape. At this point, those mistakes should seem obvious.

Number one is to avoid the headhunter services that managed to land us such catches as Lott and Don Buie. We have a human resources department for a reason after all. With the help of employment websites, they should be able to launch a nationwide search just fine.

Next, it’s obvious that before someone is considered a finalist for a job, a thorough background check needs to be conducted. The City of Savannah almost replicated our mistake in hiring Lott in the first place, partially because of headhunters and partially because they trusted those headhunters to do full background checks. They didn’t.

Background checks aren’t overly difficult, either. After a criminal background check is conducted (and make sure it goes as far back as humanly possible), do some actual checking to see if they were worth a darn in their previous jobs. Do a Google search, for Pete’s sake. You can learn a lot that way. In fact, we avoided a mistake with a potential employee that way not to long ago.

It’s imperative that we learn from our mistakes with regard to Lott. There is still hope for Albany, but it’s up to the City Commission. It’s a great chance for Albany to make some positive moves forward. Hopefully, we can seize this moment and make great things happen.

I’m not particularly confident, though. History seems to indicate that good things won’t come of this. Time will tell, and I hope my fears are misplaced. I’ve gotten where I don’t expect much, but I’m pretty pessimistic these days. Maybe this time, the City Commission will show me something new.

However, for just now, I’m going to bask in the beauty of a Lott-less Albany. That, for the moment, will be good enough. We’ll deal with what’s next shortly.

tomknightonWritten by Tom Knighton. Read his blog at TomKnighton.com, as well as SWGAPolitics.com. A lifelong political junkie, Tom started out his adult life as a journalism major at Darton College before leaving school to serve his nation as a U.S. Navy Corpsman. Through the years, he has watched government from outside and inside. A former Reagan supporter, then later a Democrat, Tom now finds himself quite comfortable as a card carrying Libertarian and currently serves as Chairman of the Libertarian Party of Southwest Georgia.

    Print       Email
  • Published: 1644 days ago on February 26, 2011
  • By:
  • Last Modified: February 21, 2011 @ 12:22 pm
  • Filed Under: Tom Knighton


  1. Sweet Lou says:

    “You will never, in all your life, be as thrilled as I am at this news.”
    You must lead a very sad life, sir.

    “We have a human resources department for a reason after all”
    Your confidence in a small town human resources department is sadly misplaced. Quick question, do you really think the HR department of P&G is qualified to pick the next president of P&G?

    “With the help of employment websites, they should be able to launch a nationwide search just fine.”
    Which would you suggest? Monster or Careerbuilder?

    “There is still hope for Albany, but it’s up to the City Commission.”
    Nice…..the head of the snake. If this is our only hope, we need to give up now.

    “However, for just now, I’m going to bask in the beauty of a Lott-less Albany.”
    Again, a pretty pathetic statement. ‘Bask’. Wow.

    Al Lott made some mistakes; this is true. And whether you like the guy, hate the guy, or are completely indifferent, to suggest that all of Albany’s problems go away when he does, clearly demonstrates a complete misunderstanding of the larger and more important problem. Albany and Dougherty County are run by a bunch of thieves and thugs and there are few agencies that you can point to that are not utterly corrupt. The corruption of this place did not begin with Mr. Lott, nor will it end with him.

    1. BillS says:

      “You must lead a very sad life, sir.”
      You can’t come up anything better that this? Perhaps your “pathetic” counterpoint would get more consideration had you opened with a more mature response than this.

      I don’t believe Tom was suggesting that all of Albany’s problems are going to ride out of town with Lott. There were/are some serious problems under Lott’s watch. He has not been accountable for his own mistakes and his burning disregard for city policy and the law. A bigger issue is that the phantom mayor and city commissioners keep their heads inserted in other places leaving the likes of Lott unchecked.

      Sure there’s corruption spread wide and from top to bottom, not just Lott; however the high level leaders need to be held accountable first. If we have a transparent and ethical city manage, mayor and city commission then it should follow down the pyramid to APD and AFD etc. etc. etc.

      Lott’s departure is a move in the right direction. It doesn’t mean there isn’t more work to do but it’s a start. Hopefully the city as a whole will have learned lesson from this. The voters and other media outlets need to quit ignoring and sugar coating the issues and remind the commissioners that they work for us.

About the author

Owner / Editor / Writer

Tom Knighton is the publisher of The Albany Journal. In November, 2011, he became the first blogger to take over a newspaper anywhere in the world. In August of 2012, he made the difficult decision to take the Journal out of print circulation and become an online news agency, a first for the Albany area.

You might also like...

Tom Knighton 2

Combating Poverty Step 3: Race relations

Read More →
SEO Powered by Platinum SEO from Techblissonline