Congratulating newly elected officials

I would like to congratulate those who were elected or re-elected to local government boards in Tuesday’s election. Your willingness to commit to bettering the community is admirable. To those who did not get elected or re-elected, thank you also. The fact that you were willing to serve shows your dedication and concern for your community.

I noticed the number of township supervisors, road commissioners and tax assessors that people had to vote on Tuesday. I think there is a time when we step back and ask if this is the most effective way to operate on a local level?

For example, if you are a rich township, your roads usually are in better shape than a township that does not have the population or the tax base to support road improvement. Shouldn’t roads be an area concern, and not just one township’s?

Or school districts. Some of the districts had no candidates for board positions. Does it make financial sense, and is it beneficial to students, to have so many districts, especially in a time when the state population is decreasing and student enrollment is dropping?  

I realize the school is often the heart of activities in Kings, Creston, Steward and Eswood … but things change. As hard as it is to face and accept, change is often necessary.

One final point on elections. Some board positions had no candidates. These may be seven member boards. Maybe a five-member board would ease the problem of finding qualified people to serve.

If you have time, take a walk or drive down Seventh Street around Fifth Avenue. Spring flowers were ablaze with color when I passed on Wednesday.  Daffodils, tulips, crocus, hyacinths, forsythia bushes, magnolia trees … all were bursting with color.  

But that won’t last. So, look now.

Last week you read about a car flipping over in an accident in a north side neighborhood.

Driving while under the influence and speeding are a bad combination. That accident was within blocks of a school and just thinking of “what ifs” makes me cringe.

We have to be held responsible for our actions. Don’t let friends drive if they are impaired. Take their keys, drive for them, just don’t let them behind the wheel.

And there needs to be stiffer sentences, especially for repeat offenders. Prosecutors should not plea bargain these cases either.  

Maybe we need to equip all cars with Breathalyzers.


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