Why do you think so many businesses merge and combine to form a larger entity? Because it works. The larger company has more resources and, if properly managed, stands to make more profits. The same is true of local government.
If cities, towns and counties combine then the new entity has larger resources. This means among other things that the new entity can (a) respond with more manpower in a disaster or an emergency, (b) contemplate and complete larger public projects that none of the combining entities could have “pulled off” alone and (c) coordinate growth, purchasing and have more expertise available to apply to any aspect of local government. This all happens without raising an extra penny in taxes or fees.
Let’s face it. Crime problems don’t stop at the city limits. Stormwater and sewer issues follow neighborhoods not political boundaries. The point is that anything which a small community can do (fairs, festivals, roads, police, emergency services, trash pick up) easily continues after combining but IN ADDITION THE COMBINED ENTITY CAN TAKE ACTIONS AND ADDRESS PROBLEMS ON A SCALE WHICH THE SMALL COMMUNITY CANNOT.
As Charleston, Kanawha County and other areas approach this problem I hope that citizens will keep an open mind. Many people will oppose consolidation because it is easier to be against something than it is to be in favor of something. Certainly, there are problems associated with any large entity be that government or business. But if you fall ill and need treatment, would you rather be admitted to a large hospital with vast resources and far-reaching expertise or to a small hospital with fourteen beds and two doctors, one of whom is on vacation?