LETTER: Commissioners should vote term limits
Thursday, September 26, 2013 10:49 AM
To Houston County commissioners:
As a resident organic farmer in Money Creek Township, I ask you to do your duty as elected officials to protect the health, safety, and welfare of your fellow citizens by taking action on the following two issues:
1) Please work with the attorneys at your disposal and direct them to assist you in completely banning industrial (frac) sand mining in Houston County. This type of mining activity poses a real and present danger to the ecology of our home county. All we need look to is the recent 1.5 years of experience in our own county and in the neighboring counties across the river in Wisconsin. We see our own closely knit community being torn apart when legitimate concerns are brought forth about both the long and short term effects of allowing large outside interests to come in and exploit local resources and individuals to the certain detriment of the entire county. Ban this type of activity that is a drain on the physical, social, and economic health of our community. In its place, look to areas in Minnesota such as Grand Marais and Brainerd that are exploring sustainable, renewable, long term energy related opportunities that truly benefit the community as a whole.
2) The moratorium on frac sand mining has exposed a structural liability in county administrative structure and operations. Long-standing appointed boards and commissions such as the Planning Commission need to have regular opportunities for change in membership. I encourage you to consider and vote for term limits for members in such situations. Term limits allow for the regular influx of new points of view and fresh perspectives on ever changing issues. What worked well in the past can become overwhelmed or ineffectual in the face of new challenges. Life-time appointments lead to more opportunities for becoming moribund if not outright corrupt. A lifetime appointment can be very difficult to dislodge in the face of ineffectiveness or conflicts of interest. Please enhance the democratic functioning of our county by voting for term limits.
Thank you for your Public Service.
John F. Jordan