Letter: Planning should be done openly and in public's best interest
I'm writing to include comments omitted when reporting my speech at the December St. Croix County Board meeting concerning the land sale in New Richmond.
Accurately reported was my description of some less-than-desirable working conditions in the Human Services building in New Richmond where I have worked for 15 years.
Also in dire need of facility enhancement is the county's 911 center. Both projects are long overdue.
However, I also emphasized the public perception concerning selling the 500 acres in New Richmond.
Several months ago, a citizen shared how one day, all that land would be sold out from underneath the nursing home and someone would get a sweetheart deal and the public would not know until afterward.
I've heard recent comments from citizens who wonder about the haste in getting this land sold ASAP when potential project costs funded by the land sale have not been solidified nor have relocation plans been developed.
Citizens wonder what is really going on behind the scenes. This property has emotional attachment to it due to hundreds of citizens who have lived and died here over the past century.
Democracy is messy and time-consuming, but it's the American way. Every voice needs to be heard.
Citizens find it hard to understand what harm would be done to publicly and thoroughly explore all options with details. A few dollars are not worth sacrificing the public trust.
County board supervisors are ultimately accountable for the process and how potential proceeds are spent.
My dad always said, "Plan your work and work your plan" and Grandma said, "Haste makes waste."
I feel if supervisors publicly develop thorough plans and options, a plan would emerge most everyone could support and would meet the needs of all county facilities that need attention.