Local government deserves some praise

It is easy to nitpick what your local government is doing when you live in a city the size of Minot.

Yes, there is going to be some degree of nepotism. That is why the city pays a solicitor, and they will advise a city board member to recuse themselves from a vote if there is a conflict of interest. We have a theory the complaints you hear are from the vocal 7% to 10% of the population, who will find something to complain about no matter how well things are going. They do not represent the silent majority that is content.

Ultimately, if you don’t like it, run for office. It just happens to be an election year, and you still have time to get on the ballot for the primary in June.

We are not just writing this to challenge people to run for office. We also want to heap praise on the Minot City Council. Both its initiative for housing and establishment of a childcare committee have been excellent ideas. It will be challenging to find the funds while the sabers are rattled over property taxes for a city council initiative to help grow childcare availability in Minot.

Council member Lisa Olson’s idea of emulating the grant program used in West Fargo is outstanding. Council member Scott Burlingame also brought forth innovative ideas for elevating the shortage of childcare in Minot. Earmarking $100,000 and setting up microgrants to help with training, again, are great ideas.

Even the thought of approaching the school district, as controversial as it is going to be, to acquire use of the McKinley and Bell buildings, once those students are comfortable in their new homes away from home, is a good one. Hopefully, the school board and city council can make the idea a reality. An empty building is a useless building.

There will be challenges, including finding a childcare provider who is able to hire enough staff to facilitate such a large childcare operation. But with challenges comes greater innovation.

We want to take a minute to thank the city council, the county commissioners and all of the members of the local school boards for doing the hard work they are putting forth to improve Minot and Ward County, not only for its residents but also for prospective residents and tourists. Thank you.


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