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County departments use mediation to resolve internal disagreement

In most situations it is in the best interest of all parties to a dispute to resolve the matter in a timely fashion. This is true in a variety of settings and disputes including construction and business. A method that often accomplishes that goal is mediation. In addition to saving time, it is also often financially a good option as it results in fewer legal bills.

This method is being pursued to resolve a dispute in another east coast state. The issue has to do with the construction of a storage building on county property.

The construction of the pole barn, which is slated to cost $120,000, was shut down by the county’s finance committee after the Public Safety Committee previously passed a resolution to build the structure. Those who take issue with the construction project cite its high price tag as a reason. Another individual, the county’s director of Emergency Services, also indicated that an issue for him is a lack of communication on the part of the Department of Public Works.

One reason that the mediation technique often works well is because it seeks to determine what each party’s underlying issues with the other is. In this particular situation it is possible that other county departments could share the Emergency Services Director’s issues with communication. Other underlying issues might also come to the surface.

The decision to use mediation could have longer lasting positive repercussions than just resolving the pole barn issue. If, in the course of working through the matter, each party has an opportunity to have his or her feelings acknowledged, it is possible that in the future the various departments might work better together.

Source: Glens Falls Post-Star, “County board chairman to mediate debate over proposed storage building,” Don Lehman, May 1, 2014

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