Time and common sense have a way of standing still in Kenneth City. Some 20 years ago a critical grand jury report cited the tiny south Pinellas town's government dysfunction, political cliques, petty feuds and incompetence. The same report called for the creation of a professional city manager. But two decades later, Kenneth City residents are still waiting.
A recent chaotic town council workshop only underscored the pressing need for professional government. What should have been a simple discussion over the hiring of a city manager descended into an acrimonious debate between Mayor Teresa Zemaitis and her council colleagues over the future of the city's police department, accusations of stolen yard stakes and the whereabouts of a city photograph. It sounds quaint, but it's not serving the town well.
Kenneth City is a town of about 1 square mile and 4,900 residents. It needs professional leadership. The Kenneth City council will attempt once again next month to discuss a ballot initiative asking voters to approve the creation of a city manager. It's time.