I'm Running: Pat TaylorElected officials are called “public servants.” I am running for the District 2 Lake County Commissioner seat because I feel that District 2 and other Lake County areas have been underserved for too long.
By: Pat Taylor, Finland, Lake County News Chronicle
Elected officials are called “public servants.” I am running for the District 2 Lake County Commissioner seat because I feel that District 2 and other Lake County areas have been underserved for too long.
By “underserved” I mean many of the local “policies” adopted by commissioners do not take into account what the actual costs of those “policies” are for residents. Nor do the commissioners communicate directly with constituents. As a commissioner I will keep in contact with residents and town boards through a regular newsletter, email, personal contact, or phone. I will address a problem any resident brings to me when a governmental or private agency may be able to help solve the problem.
In a March 1991 letter to then Rep. David Battaglia I wrote that it was time to expose the myth that it is less expensive to live in a rural area than in a city. I addressed items from education to utilities. In May of 2010 I added an update – little has changed in those 19 years.
Cities are essential to all county residents for banking, medical care, employment, education, shopping, and other services. In a 2009 publication from the Silver Bay Public Library titled, “Silver Bay Area Organizations and Businesses,” I find 73 non-governmental volunteer organizations and 75 mom-and-pop or family-owned businesses. In a 2007 paper titled “Chasing Smokestacks” and subtitled “Stranding Small Business: Rural Minnesota’s Crisis,” Lake and 33 other Minnesota counties are termed as a “Frontier County.” The paper describes a “Frontier County” as one where lack of “cultural and institutional amenities are deemed insufficient to support growth.” A recent roadside conversation with a “communication engineer” found him planning the route for the Northeast Minnesota Fiber Project that will bring three redundant fiber optic systems to eight counties, tying together the fiber optic lines that have been put in place whenever a road was re-built.
Who will have access to this $90,000,000 project? “Critical public sector agencies including: school districts, libraries, health care organizations, state, county, city and other municipal agencies.” The Northeast Service Cooperative has received $43.5 million in stimulus funding, who will pick up the rest?
Our small businesses are falling behind when “operating expenses,” including the state general tax, far exceed the normal third of gross sales. All county entities must join in the fight to get the Legislature to amend this statute that also affects our schools.
How many county residents are among the 24 percent of Minnesotans who received television through an antenna and now get nothing?
Minnesota’s most “unhealthy” county? The survey takers obviously overlooked all of our family gardens and the people who still can, dry, pickle, smoke, and freeze vegetables, fish, and meat.
Property taxes? I urge everyone to check over their statement, including the classification. Is it correct?
A movement to reduce Minnesota counties from the present 87 to fewer “area” or “district” counties is in process. It includes county sheriff offices taking over patrol duties from the State Patrol. How many Lake County representatives will be on a new region board?
Lake County’s biggest asset is its residents. With “kitchen table” economics and inclusion of all I know, we can make it through these times. We did it before in the 1980s, when Lake County had a population of 15,000. In 1990: 9,000; in 2000: 11,000. What will the 2010 census show? Will we grow or be stagnate?
For details, and qualifications, visit my web site at www. cpinternet.com/~ptay. Do you have questions? Email me at email@example.com. I will carry a hard copy while out door knocking.