If you ask Chautauqua County Legislator Larry Barmore, R-Gerry, apparently the majority of residents here do not feel there is "too much government."
Barmore cited a survey stating 41 percent of county residents said there was too much government and conversely, 59 percent are happy with the amount of government.
Where he got that survey, we don't know. Perhaps he was surveying people who work for the county, a village, city or a town. Those people are more likely to say they're happy with the amount of government, recognizing that if the levels are lowered, they'll lose their jobs.
Or perhaps he was surveying politicians. If you were to survey county legislators, trustees, city and town councilmembers, they, too, are likely to say they're happy with the current levels of government, because cutting it would mean they could lose their status as a politician.
So over the weekend, the OBSERVER, in its online poll question, asked voters, "Do you believe there is too much government in Chautauqua County?"
Much more than 41 percent voted yes. In fact, 87 percent of people who responded to the poll voted to say there was too much government in Chautauqua County.
That 87 percent figure is nearly identical to the 86.67 percent of the people who voted in favor of downsizing the county legislature last fall.
For the record, our poll at www.observertoday.com had 336 voters. We recognize this is not a scientific poll. Yes, some of those people who voted could live outside Chautauqua County. Perhaps they're people who became frustrated about how much government Chautauqua County has and relocated.
But at the end of the day, Chautauqua County has 27 towns, 15 villages and two cities. We don't care what survey you read. For a county with a population of less than 135,000, that is too much government.