I am visiting family here in Minot on July 21, 2014. The Magic City is bustling with activity during the State Fair! YOUR city represents our State July 16-26. I would consider this an honor.
I am sad to say, there seems to be an ongoing problem in your city that does not seem to be getting addressed. I have read and heard on the radio several times, the citizens in your community asking for action on properties that have been left abandoned since the flood over three years ago.
I am sitting next to one of these places. I have grandchildren that have to deal with masses of mosquitoes due to the tall grass that is left unmowed by the banks/city who are suppose to be maintaining the grass. The houses are full of mold since no one has cleaned them up.
Who is in charge? Obviously no one wants to take the responsibility! What will it take?
I hope someone in your city steps up soon before one of the beautiful little children I see playing in your neighborhoods finds themselves with great physical illness due to the mold or West Nile because YOU whoever you are did not mow or clean up these abandoned houses and yards.
The picture I have included is what sits next door to my grandchildren's home. How many day's growth would you say is on the lawn? I am ashamed of the adults who are not taking care of this problem. It's easy to pass the buck isn't it? Shame on you!! '
Demanding better of the Legislature
Congratulations to The Minot Daily News for your editorials and articles warning of problems in the oil industry and demanding better from the legislature. Last Sunday was a good example in the story on pipeline leaks.
Rep. Dick Anderson of Willow City was quoted that he plans to revisit legislation that was rejected last year. Another example of closing the gate after the cows are out!
Our Legislature and their lack of strong laws forcing the oil industry to do better is the biggest problem. As long as we have legislators like Dick Anderson and a lot of the others dancing to Ron Ness and the Petroleum Council we can expect slow gains for the benefit of North Dakota.
Pipelines, done right, have always been and always will be the best way to move crude oil.
North Dakota voters and our media have to demand better of the Legislature.
Fair should stop bullying Society
Like many, I've been following the conflict between the North Dakota State Fair and the Ward County Historical Society over the latter's use of land on the fairgrounds. The State Fair wants the Historical Society gone, so they can build a new convention center, but the society points to a contract they have which they say gives them perpetual right to the space they're using.
It seems to me that the Fair folks are being bullies, but to help edify my opinion my daughter and I stopped by the Historical Society's area at the fair this weekend.
What we found was wonderful. Well-maintained and interesting exhibits staffed by helpful and knowledgeable people. What we had expected to be a 15-minute perusal turned into an hour of looking, reading and learning.
I am now more certain than ever that the Historical Society deserves its place on the fairgrounds. Our local history is important, and while it's probably true that most people spend more time at the fair playing rigged carney games or hearing about the latest and greatest mop, it would be a shame to deny fair attendees at least the opportunity to see and hear some of our local histories.
The dispute between the Fair and the Historical Society is now in court, but the Fair ought to withdraw from their bullying push to remove this historical exhibit from the fairgrounds and instead try to work with the society to keep this edifying exhibit.
Extra boots on the ground welcome
North Dakota OSHA area director Eric Brooks announced last week that OSHA will be sending extra enforcement staff to North Dakota to conduct a safety blitz, focusing on the Oil, Gas and Construction industries.
On behalf of the Missouri Slope Labor Council, AFL-CIO, I wanted to publicly thank Mr. Brooks and OSHA for their commitment to putting more boots on the ground to perform critical workplace safety monitoring and training in western North Dakota. North Dakota has the highest rate of workplace fatality in the country, and it's no surprise that the majority of these fatalities occur in the energy and construction industries. We desperately need all the help we can get to ensure our workers go home in the same condition they arrive on the job site.
While the extra staffing appears to be temporary, we applaud this as an excellent first step in addressing the issue of workplace fatalities in North Dakota, and encourage OSHA to consider permanently increasing the number of OSHA staff in North Dakota.
Once again, kudos to Mr. Brooks and his team at OSHA for their tireless work increasing the safety of North Dakotans on the job.