Sept. 18, the county commissioners conducted a meeting at the safety building about cleaning the west branches of Wolf Creek. In our neighborhood, we all keep our part of the creek cleaned so it flows through our neighborhood freely. Now, we have 12 wealthy farmers who have petitioned to have all of us taxpayers who in any way feed into Wolf Creek help them out by paying to let the county keep it clean, and this would not be a one-time-only deal. This project would be open-ended, so our taxes could be paying for this forever.
The farmers who are the petitioners want the water to flow more quickly off their farmland, the consequences of this would be erosion and dumping the water on everyone downstream, possibly too quickly for them to handle it. They will be passing the buck or making problems for someone else, in the next county, and we, the taxpayers, will be paying the bill to help 12 individuals, who are possibly farming land that they shouldn't be farming in the first place.
Cost over-runs another problem - when have you ever seen the government come in under or on budget for anything in which it is involved? After all, it's not its pocketbook the money is coming from, it will be ours! An open-ended agreement like they are talking about opens up all kinds of abuses down the road. As Ronald Reagan once said, "Government programs, once launched, never disappear."
Farming is like any other business; there are risks involved, and we should not ask others to take on their risk factor. If you got a speeding ticket, your neighbors shouldn't be responsible for paying for your mistake. The same should be true in this case.
Fred and Kay Zirger, Deana and James Brandt, James and Cindy Maiberger, Richard Osterwalder, Marvin Keefe, Jon and Kim Boucher, Douglas Ranker, Carol Conley, Alex Smith, Dennis and Paula Wise, Carl D. Redman and Jean Valentine