11/4 Letters to the Editor

*MINET a financial drain on cities*Support our local service agencies*MINET's situation is very troubling*Why didn't vet help save puppy?*Fundraisers thank supporters*Dallas leaders need imagination*M

MINET a financial drain on cities

I thought MINET was a bad idea in the first place ("MINET requires help with payment," Oct. 28 Itemizer-Observer).

Competition by a municipality with business interests is never a good thing. Over the years, with a continuing and growing indebtedness, has confirmed my first thoughts. Now, with being asked for another $427,000, I am sure of it.

The city councils in Monmouth and Independence have to decide if they want this moneypit to continue or cut our losses now. We are on the hook for all their loans at this time and I cannot see any way we will ever be paid back.

I definitely do not want any more of my tax money to be used. Enough is enough. Didn't they say at the start that tax moneys would not be used in this operation?

Harold E. Pippin


Support our local service agencies

I recently read a letter to the editor in the Oct. 28 Itemizer-Observer accusing the school district of using its funds frivolously, saying that the parking lot maintenance and expansion is not necessary and also saying "next they'll need another $500,000 for skateboard and rollerblade teachers."

If you haven't been to Oakdale Elementary School, you should try and park in the parking lot between the hours of 1:30 and 2:30 p.m. It's gridlock, with parents trying to pick up their kids and the school buses having to park a block away to fit into the small parking area.

As a father of a child in the Dallas School District and a volunteer in the community, I am tired of people complaining about paying increased taxes and expecting the same level of service without spending money on those services. This includes the police and fire departments.

Spending money on these agencies creates jobs, stimulates the economy and provides for a better way of life. Let's support our local government agencies. It's good for everyone.

Travis Powers


MINET's situation is very troubling

MINET, Monmouth-Independence Network, is a public utility business owned and paid for by the taxpayers of Monmouth and Independence.

Monmouth citizens need to pay a whole lot closer attention to the MINET utility and city of Monmouth financial relationship. The Monmouth City Council, mayor and city manager have for several years been warned of financial difficulties associated with MINET.

In several past years, Monmouth utilities have diverted tens of thousands of dollars in utility reserve funds to cover shortcomings in financial obligations of MINET. In the Oct. 28 issue of the Itemizer-Observer, it was reported that another $235,000 is being diverted from Monmouth utility reserve funds.

MINET has used Monmouth's good bond and credit rating to borrow millions from both government and private institutions. Unfortunately, citizens of Monmouth and Independence have guaranteed MINET loans in excess of $18 million, plus interest. Timely MINET payments appear to be a problem.

MINET offers a first-class product in the electronic field. MINET has an outstanding workforce. However, MINET must compete with the likes of AT&T, Quest, Verizon, DirectTV, Comcast, cable, WiFi and Dish Network, to name a few.

If MINET fails to meet financial obligations, citizens of Monmouth, and Independence, are in for an unhealthy repayment surprise.

Don Barry


Why didn't vet help save puppy?

A year ago, my daughter got her very own puppy. I'm sure we all remember how grown up that made us feel -- the responsibility of another's health and happiness.

A few weeks ago, my daughter's "best friend" just didn't seem like herself. We took her to a vet (not her usual one), where we were given medication for an ear infection. We were relieved it was nothing serious.

On a recent morning, that sweet little puppy endured five seizures. I called the vet and explained the seizures and that she wouldn't eat, drink or go to the bathroom. Imagine my surprise when the vet said it was probably epilepsy and to call the next Monday morning.

I didn't get it. There were all the signs of something serious, but the vet wouldn't see us. So, for three days, we helplessly witnessed seizure after seizure, then disorientation.

My little girl watched as I forced water down her puppy, and soon was doing this on her own. She was even able to stay calm and count the seconds of a seizure, so we could write it down. This went above and beyond her normal responsibilities of owning her own puppy.

Sadly, last Monday morning, we had to say goodbye. Diagnosed with inflammatory brain disease, there was nothing we could do. The puppy couldn't take any more.

As for the doctor who didn't see the need to get this puppy in sooner, I only wish you could have seen how hard this puppy and my little girl fought to stay together.

Imagine being the one with the power to prevent three days of heartache and suffering, and yet doing nothing at all.

Danita Eaton


Fundraisers thank supporters

Polk County Association of Realtors held a fundraiser on Oct. 25. We raised $629 for Relay For Life and collected 108 pounds of food for Dallas Food Bank.

Special thanks to Dutch Brothers, Ugo's Pizza, LaCreole Middle School, White's Collision, Dallas Fire Department and St. Philip Catholic Church for donations and use of a sign, tables and facility.

Thanks also to all our great vendors and scrapbookers for their support.

Jana Fogg


Dallas leaders need imagination

When questioned about the proposed street maintenance fee, Dallas city leaders repeatedly have told us that their decisions are based on two factors. One, other cities are already imposing such a fee; and two, a computer program makes the decisions for them as to which street needs repair.

Why do our city leaders feel compelled to get their ideas and solutions from other cities? Couldn't Dallas possibly be unique? Is there something legally binding them to the dictates of a computer program?

This conveys to me that our city leaders are unable to demonstrate true leadership, so they must rely on decisions and practices used in other cities. Isn't this called "not being able to think for yourself?" This mind-set makes Dallas a nonentity rather than a unique city, leading the way in problem-solving and development issues.

Where would Dallas be if those serving as city leaders had the ability or the desire to be innovative and creative rather than having to be on the defensive with concerned residents?

Faye L. Frei


Many help keep pageant strong

The Rickreall Christmas Pageant has a lot to be thankful for this year.

An old tradition has many new happenings this year to bring us into our 69th annual performance. As director, I would like to give thanks to those for helping us continue this wonderful community event Dec. 10-12.

Sherry and Antonio Garcia, new owners of the former Rickreall Grade School building, are allowing us to continue to use the building for our performances. Our new choir director, Ruthi LaFrenier, returns after having directed our choir in the past. Jim Herzog is coordinating our new Web site host through his involvement with the Polk County Cultural Coalition. And thanks to all the board of directors, cast, choir, stage help and committees that help make this tradition come together each year.

I hope to see you all at the pageant. Tickets are available by calling 503-623-0958. For more information, visit www.RickreallChristmasPageant.com.

Mary McCarron



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