Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Ask the questions, demand the answers

A fresh, white, blanket of snow covers the ground this morning. I think Mother Nature is telling us winter is over when she says it is. Not sure who challenged her authority, but I am willing to apologize for that transgression and say, “bring on the warmer weather!”

With warmer weather comes bright days and lots of time outside. It seems to be the time we all shake off the trappings of winter and prepare for a rebirth of ourselves into fun loving, sun loving people.

Almost symbolic of that “rebirth” is a question facing many of us in the May election. That question being the rail spur.

First things first, I am not going to sit here and tell you how you should vote on the rail spur. That’s up you. But I am going to tell you what I think about it.

The rail spur seems to be a leap of faith, if you will. It is asking our community to invest in this project for the betterment of our future - a future that needs investing.

Foot traffic downtown is dwindling and our businesses are feeling it. I fear the day when another business shutters their window and puts a “Closed” sign on the door - never again turning the sign to open.

To me, the rail spur seems like an opportunity for us, as citizens of this town, to say we are willing to make an investment. Is it scary? Sure it is. Do we know all the answers? No, we do not.

But that is where we need to inform ourselves. Robert Mayo wrote a letter to the editor this week asking questions about the rail spur project. He said that he has read the articles and questions that we have published, but is still left with a lack of information.

I hope that someone from the city, or perhaps this committee that is advocating for the rail spur, will take it upon themselves and answer them. Perhaps they can call Mr. Mayo, or maybe they can write a letter to the editor in response.

I think also that if you have questions you should go to city council. Your elected officials should be able to answer these questions for you. Or, you can call Economic Developer JP Komorny and ask him. He, too, should be able to answer those for you.

The rail spur project is indeed a leap of faith. Faith in your community and faith in the growth of our future.

Take the time to be informed. This is a huge decision. Learn as much as you can. If, at the end of the day you have learned all you can and still do not support, then obviously vote no. But, if you think that there is a chance that we can prevent Kimball from sliding further, then cast your vote for its future.