Here we are looking at a double-digit increase in our utilities, money that most of us living in Spring Grove do not have, while the mayor and her council are looking at bonding us for over $1 million for city beautification. (Know what that means?)

A raise in taxes as well, just to have fancy Victorian looking streetlights, flowerpots that water themselves and will have to be moved and stored in the winter.

And yes, to go along with that, fancy looking colored waffle sidewalks that we can walk our poor feet over when we are maxed out of money.

What part of we are taxed to death do you mayor and city council members not understand?

Fix the sewer pipes and whatever water maintenance needs to be done and forgo all the extra fancy stuff.

We are not millionaires, and we don't want to look like we are. One can only guess what all the hidden costs are going to be.

The Concerned Citizens group has asked several times for a line-by-line item of the cost of the beautification and as to date has not received one.

I believe we are being misled!

Mayor Solum has told us we do not have the facts straight. Then give it to us straight!

She has also commented that no one seems to complain to her about not wanting any of this beautification!

I know for a fact, she came to a Concerned Citizens meeting, and we told her how we felt. She let it go in one ear and right out the other.

Then, to top it off, she said the city was going to foot the bill for a big celebration when everything was done. I ask, a celebration for what? For robbing our senior citizens of every penny they have?

Well, if you go ahead with all the unnecessary things that this town does not need, I, for one, will not be attending your celebration, and anyone who does is admitting that they, too, want to drain the poor senior citizens of all the money they have.

Why do we have to try and keep up with other cities? Let's just do our own thing and remain a quaint, humble farming community.

The time has come to let your voice and your opinion be heard. Don't be afraid to do so; we are looking at some serious increases in taxes as well as utility increases.

We, as Spring Grove residents, are letting anywhere from 5 to perhaps 6 or 7 people tell over l,300 residents that because we elected them to represent us, the final decision on what happens will be what they decide.

That just doesn't seem right. If the main reason for beautification is to draw tourists and perhaps a new resident, this is not the way to do it.

Do you really think tourists will come just to see all these fancy things when any town around within a 100-mile radius or more has the same thing?

Do you really think anyone will choose to move here for the same reason?

I don't. Especially, when they find how high taxes are and the outrageous utility bills.

To make this right, I truly believe that a referendum on this project should be put on the ballot this November, and let the majority speak instead of just the mayor and the council and any other people working behind the scenes who don't want anyone to know they are involved in the fleecing of Spring Grove.

Judy Stiner

business owner and resident

of Spring Grove