Editor Roy Miller made some very good points in his editorial regarding televising government meetings. I believe I can speak for all commissioners when I say that we would like to improve communications and citizen input. After all, government in a free society is everyone's responsibility. I personally favor any means of improving communications including live televising of our meetings.
However, I believe there are some problems with the proposed solution of using the Brainerd City Council Chambers for county board meetings.
The county board meetings are working meetings involving many county departments and citizens. To make informed decisions we need access to county employees and information. This access to information and people would be impossible to obtain at another site. In addition, our meetings are conducted during business hours. It would be very difficult to have them at Brainerd City Hall when they are also busy.
Most of the citizens in Crow Wing County, especially our rural constituents, do not have access to live cable broadcasts.
List most everyone else, we are facing difficult budget decisions. At this time, an increase in expenditure in one area will mean a reduction elsewhere. Because of the limited audience, I cannot justify this expense relative to the benefit at this time.
I will continue to explore all methods of improving communications. Perhaps new technology will emerge that would allow broadcasts to reach all or most of our constituent's homes. At that time, I will eagerly pursue this endeavor.
Crow Wing County Commissioner, District 2
Dick Day's comments
In an article that ran on Page 8 of The Dispatch, citizens of northern Minnesota learned some ominous news. Republican Dick Day, who stands to become majority leader in the event of a Republican takeover of the Senate, announced that northern Minnesota is losing people and power. For this reason, "If I became majority leader, I guess that would be the last place I would look at to locate any development dollars." Day has identified the District 4 race (Tony Kinkel's vacated seat) as a crucial one in his bid for power.
Ironically, Day would punish voters in District 4 for voting Republican; he will use his power to channel resources away from northern Minnesota. That's only fair, he says, since "they've sure been doing it to us year after year."
Day's comments reveal the precariousness of our legislative interests here in central and northern Minnesota.
I am writing to express how disappointed I am with the Brainerd city council's recent vote to annex land East of 28th Street in Oak Lawn Township. As a resident of Oak Lawn Township, I am fed up and tired of our elected officials who deem to know beyond the people they represent. Not only do our elected officials want additional land to tax and additional money to spend, but power as well. Specifically, three weeks ago, I am disturbed by their actions where the Brainerd city council voted to annex land East of 28th Street in Oak Lawn Township, even though many of the residents gravely opposed the annexation right from the beginning through a signed petition. Therefore, against the will of the Oak Lawn Township residents, the Brainerd city council members voted the annexation with imprudence and without regard to the residents.
Furthermore, Lucy Nesheim, Brainerd city council president, mentioned on a radio station program three months ago that she would not annex any property if the owners wished against it. With that being said in public, I cannot believe Lucy retracted her word in voting for this annexation to proceed. Question: If Lucy cannot be trusted to keep her word on something simple such as this on a local level, how can we expect Lucy to keep her word on any future items at the state level?
If you see the world being led toward moral and economic bankruptcy, can you comfortably stand by?
If you are a U.S. citizen, is not your vote, the first of the responsible actions you should take?
Is not moral action your investment for long-term good, while greed plays on all short-term wants?
When is war and revolution better than real democratic action?
While you are waiting for that chance to vote, be it in an election, in the Senate, or the House, what can you do better than speak out and listen?
If you are concerned in the present, about the consequences you may be subject to because of your ideas, can it ever be better to wait?
By the time you think of the present, is it not history?
Then is it not the future that you must address in all those fleeting now's that become history as you speak?
And does not your, being, affect all life, in the now and in the future?
Dennis G. Gordon
Neighbor to neighbor
I would like to ask my Indian neighbors ... what more can I do? What more can my customers do? How much further do I have to bend as a neighboring business? For two weeks of netting on the spawning beds, 52 weeks of tension and frustration are created.
For five years we have been trying to live with and work with a system that is flawed. Most anglers and business owners have never bought into the numbers and system but "it is the only system we have." Finally the state DNR is realizing the system isn't working and that there are other methods to use. Why can't the Native American DNR people see the same thing?
The amount of fish kept and killed this year exceeds the limits under the flawed system. Still the numbers equal an average year. There is no biological damage to the lake. The overage is not a big deal. Why are the Native Americans pushing it? Is there some underlying motivation? Maybe if they can get the lake shut down and run the business down they could take it all over. Their actions make no sense as a friendly neighbor.
A recent letter writer mentioned a speech made by Norm Coleman at the 1996 DFL convention in St. Paul. I attended that convention as a Morrison County delegate. The then DFLer Norm Coleman, the mayor of St. Paul, gave a speech to welcome the conventioneers to his city. What the writer failed to mention was how the speech was received. When Mayor Coleman finished his speech, there was some applause and much loud, rude booing. Yes, many DFL conventioneers booed this elected DFL office holder.
The booing was not because of what Norm Coleman said; it was for what he stood for. Norm Coleman was a pro-life, pro-gun, anti-big spending conservative Democrat and the radical, left wing DFLers, who control the party, could not accept that.
Norm Coleman also had one other strike against him. In 1993 when Coleman first ran for mayor of St. Paul, a non-partisan race, he not only challenged the incumbent, but also Andy Dawkins, a liberal, far-left Democrat who was endorsed by the DFL party. Coleman beat them both. The party was not about to accept him.
Unless one is pro-abortion, pro-gay rights, anti-gun, a big spender and supports party candidates, one has no chance to advance. Radical, far-left Paul Wellstone and Roger Moe are perfect examples of what it takes to be accepted by the DFL.
This is also true in the legislature. Sen. Don Samuelson's seniority was a factor in his being chosen as president of the Senate. But more important was his allegiance to the DFL party, its candidates, and his strong support for Roger Moe.
There is no "big tent" in the DFL party. You either cater to the radical, left wing and its candidates or you are not welcome. Norm Coleman was wise to leave.
Clara J. Kedrowski
Warrior football coverage
I am writing this letter out of frustration concerning the coverage that Warrior Football teams receive. I do not understand why a program that involves approximately 100 kids cannot get more recognition by the Brainerd newspaper. I am sick of seeing Pillager or C-I getting more coverage than the Warriors. Is Millsop a more enthusiastic reporter than Bialka? Millsop plugs the smaller area schools all the time (which is nice for them). Bialka's coverage seems to be limited to a couple of quotes and the statistics of the offense. Bialka does a great job of covering the success of the Warrior baseball team, which I think is wonderful, but the football team is the best show in town. Thousands of people attend the games, which means there is community interest. Add in the band, the cheerleaders, and the Kixters, and the number of kids involved in one Friday evening activity is enormous. I have been a daily reader of The Dispatch for 20 plus years and have watched coverage of Warrior football deteriorate. I am not sure of the reason for this, but it is not fair to the young men who are playing their hearts out weekly for the community. Ron Stolski and his staff run a clean program that is highly respected around the state. Warrior football brings tremendous pride to hundreds of Dispatch readers. These boys deserve to have the Brainerd newspaper get back on the Warrior wagon.
After having read some of the recent columns in Open Forum, complaining about the planning and zoning being biased and one-sided, I wonder where we would be without them?
It would be like having no highway patrol. No city police, no sheriff department.
I was at the last Crow Wing Township board meeting and it was a total joke.
The Brainerd Daily Dispatch and our local county commissioner were invited to witness the overwhelming majority in favor of this track and business move.
The majority being a half dozen bikers and their families.
No matter how this turns out, I would like to thank the County planning and zoning for taking time to look at two sides. Township planning and zoning didn't get that chance.
One year from now there could be, and perhaps will be, 25,000 to 50,000 signatures against this operation from Crow Wing State Park visitors alone.
Ken and Sandra Pederson
(adjoining land owners)
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