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OPINION: Troublemaker? Troublemaker!

KSAL Staff - January 6, 2016 1:26 pm

city  county building III

Sunday’s editorial contained “dream headlines” for 2016. Twentieth on the list: “Troublemakers stop showing up at commission meetings, admit they were only doing it for attention.”

That provoked a hard swallow. I may resemble that remark. And I won’t apologize.

As I sit down at the Saline County Commission meeting, I say hello to fellow troublemakers. We share a few things in common. We believe in open meetings and open records. We want the public to be informed. So, if discussions are one sided, we express our opinions, often in letters to the editor.

While I think the Journal does an overall excellent job of covering the news, I feel the need to document the meetings elsewhere . . . because there have been times when the Journal hasn’t sent a reporter, or limits the inches that can be devoted to a story.

Last year, the Journal “whipped up” interest in building a new Road & Bridge shop. In two stories, the new R&B Director was interviewed and building deficiencies were detailed. Curiously, the Journal was not present when County Commissioners toured the facility with City Fire Marshall and Building Inspector in tow. Nineteen deficiencies were noted and are being promptly corrected. Multiple years have elapsed since the Fire Marshall inspected the R&B shop . . . but that doesn’t prompt inquiry.

That’s just one example. The Sheriff’s Office has skyrocketing costs and an increasing jail population. The Health Department’s efforts to increase the public’s awareness of sexually transmitted diseases, outside of an initial press release on a syphilis outbreak, are imperceptible. Beth Clarkson, a statistician, is raising concerns about the kind of voting machines we use in Saline County; she spoke at K State Polytechnic’s November civics luncheon. But, you won’t read about these in The Journal.

So, the Journal labels concerned citizens “troublemakers”. In Owen Wister’s masterpiece, when Trampas (the villain) slurs the Virginian, he replies “when you call me that, SMILE.”

Opinion by: Karen Shade, TMASCC (troublemaking, attention-seeking, concerned citizen)

Doug Clemens

January 6, 2016 at 2:28 pm

The journal is afraid of the commissions whether city or county what this town needs is an investigated reporting newspaper that would tell it like it is. Without people at these meetings to question matters both commissions would do as they please. FOR INSTANCE we have city commissioners who want to raise taxes once again for the river project. They do not want to let the tax being charged for the new pool to expire on 2019. The voters voted the river project down but our mayor evidently is not smart enough to realize the voters spoke. Just maybe some recalls of commissioners would give him a clearer message.

Kelly Grace

January 6, 2016 at 11:36 pm

The river project should be shut down, until the City of Salina, including the Mayor, commissioners, chamber, and Jason Gage, understand that t if they keep turning business away that want to come here, because of their good old boys club, with owners of the few manufacturing jobs we have. The City refuses to bring, or even entice outside manufacturing jobs, because then they would have to increase wages….. but this good ol boys club have a monopoly here to control that. But they think they are going to force the broke jobless tax payers of Salina to pay for a River project so the 1% of Salina can make millions off it? Salina is corrupt. Salina lost over 200 jobs through Raytheon Aircraft average worker making $20.00 per hour, and the City of Salina makes no effort to replace that. Airport Authority costing Salina tax payers thousands of dollars setting empty, but hey Tim Rogers and his huge staff are getting paid everyday for nothing.

Doug Clemens

January 8, 2016 at 9:20 am

All of you that realize what both Kelly and I are saying needs to unite and rid Salina of this type of thinking and behavior. Its time to send the city manager Gage on his way and then get commissioners elected that do not have personal agenda’s elected. We need a city manager and commissioners to look to helping the people who live and work here while struggling to make a living. THE CURRENT ADMINISTRATION KEEPS SPENDING MONEY LIKE IT GROWS ON TREES. For instance they spend 13 million on the Bi-Center which still sits empty but they cannot fix the bridge on Greely Ave that many people used. They keep putting that off and you may ask why it is because the commission is full of river supporters and they do not want that bridge replaced. Time people got their minds off the county commissioners and get focused on the CITY commissioners.

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City of Salina