As we enter the political season of caucus meetings, conventions and primaries, it's interesting to see who has filed to run for the Salt Lake County Commission.

It seems, for instance, that all the current commissioners and county attorney are busy this year promoting and funding their own personal candidates, who will later be beholden to them.Of particular concern is the fact that almost all of the candidates are high-level county employees or former employees. It's as if this alone is the qualification for office in a very private game only insiders are allowed to play.

It would seem, with the turmoil of the past few years, that we have reached the point where county government needs a good cleaning. The type of in-breeding suggested by many of the candidacies is not good for any organization, let alone county leadership.

It's time to end the constant cycle of mismanagement and accusations. We need to bring in new leadership from outside the "circle." Fortunately, there are such candidates available. Their hats are in the ring. It's time we make them our real community leaders by examining the candidates' credentials and selecting two new commissioners whose roots are with the people.

Michael D. Thorpe

Salt Lake City