Commentary: County decision isn’t fair to allIn 2001 the Todd County Board adopted a comprehensive plan, prepared by a broad based group of Todd County citizens, which, among other things, recommended that a southwest scenic drive be created in Todd County to include the Amish businesses and which would show off the history and scenery of the area.
By: Randolph T. Brown, Todd County, The Osakis Review
In 2001 the Todd County Board adopted a comprehensive plan, prepared by a broad based group of Todd County citizens, which, among other things, recommended that a southwest scenic drive be created in Todd County to include the Amish businesses and which would show off the history and scenery of the area.
A group of hardworking citizens undertook to create a non-profit corporation whose purpose was to create and market the scenic drive recommended in the comprehensive plan. A Todd County property owner who grew up in Osakis donated and sent $6,300 to Todd County to pay for the signs and the installation of the signs for the proposed scenic drive and the non-profit group agreed to be responsible for the future cost of maintenance of the signs. This economic development project would cost the taxpayers of Todd County nothing to implement.
I had no idea from reviewing my real estate tax statement that Todd County must be in such good financial condition. At the county board meeting on March 16, a motion was made by one county commissioner to reaffirm their earlier resolution to create the scenic drive and to give it a name to which the Long Prairie Veterans organizations had no objection and make minor changes to the route, to which there was similarly no objection.
It seemed obvious that the remaining four commissioners had an understanding before the meeting that none of the other four would second the motion and that is what happened. In killing this economic development project without even discussing it, the board in essence spit in the eye of all those people who have worked so hard and long to implement this economic development project. They also spit in the eye of the city council and mayors of Long Prairie, Osakis, Burtrum and West Union, all of which had formally approved of the project. They also spit in the eye of the county’s own park and trails board, which had approved of and recommended the scenic drive and of the Long Prairie Tourism committee, which also recommended it. They also spit in the eye of Todd County taxpayers because this economic development project would bring revenue into Todd County without any cost to the taxpayers of Todd County. I had no idea Potomac fever could spread this far from Washington, D.C.
I would hope that qualified candidates will step forward and run against the county commissioners who are elected to represent us and then refuse to discuss or vote on matters of economic importance to the taxpayers of Todd County. Two of those commissioners are up for election this year.