City manager is cleaning up Minot’s mess

Monte Reiner


Tom Barry’s first year article was an excellent portrayal of the facts and showed clarity, honesty, and professionalism. Blaming Tom Barry for the sins of the past is ridiculous and shows a total lack of reasoning. Tom Barry’s transparent education to citizens on our challenging situation is a breath of fresh air compared to our history.

Although some of the message in the breath may require a whole roll of Certs this is where we are.

The flood of 2011 was huge and will impact the region and state for a long time. However, my opinion is that uncontrolled energy development is the fly at the picnic generating ongoing challenges. Infrastructure built to support energy development was costly and now with revenue collapses taxpayers get new Christmas greetings in the mail. Vacant housing developments and acres of undeveloped land within the cities simply are not genertating the revenue for the infrastructure investment. Recent write offs of $50 million by a large real estate trust shows one piece of the picture.

Our tax structure is not designed to generate the revenue from those who benefit from development and as the industires move on to the next victim Joe Taxpayer is left holding the bag. Reinventing government is a great plan to execute, but huge cuts in government are the only way we can address our revenue shortfalls. Our next legislature will be handed this challenge they created.

Energy development gave the region job opportunities and secondary revenue. This is what excites politicians, but they have no clue about the costs of infrastructure from over development, human and financial costs of crime, and the destruction of lives from drugs and sex trafficking that followed the money. Taxpayers cannot be responsible for subsidizing businesses and the carnage they leave behind.

All of this stuff is haunting us from past sins. Tom Barry did not commit these sins and has done a great job in trying to address the mess. If he was responsible he would only be able to be located in the confessional. The challenges are huge and prayer is probably the only answer to what faces those who are and will be feeling the pain from some very destructive decision making.