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home : opinion : editorial August 28, 2014


3/6/2013 9:26:00 AM
Cheers and Jeers

Snowplows are working overtime in the Twin Cities, spring sports coaches are pulling equipment out of mothballs and lawmakers are arguing about who is most at fault.
It must be March.
Fortunately, the Windom area avoided yet another major snow event early this week. If you listened real closely on Monday morning, you could almost hear the students' collective sigh when they heard Windom schools were only two hours late.
So, as students continue to hold out hope for one more "snow day" opportunity, we bring you the latest "Cheers & Jeers."
Cheers go out to the Cottonwood County Commissioners who on Tuesday took a leadership role in helping the State Theater get back on its feet.
Commissioners unanimously supported a plan to use $20,000 from the County Seed Capital Fund to support a key long-term loan for the theater. The plan, which was designed by Commissioner Tom White, is for the seed money to be used as a loan in concert with low-interest loans from several local banks to assist the movie theater.
Organizers of Windom Theater Inc., the local non-profit group that owns the theater, say that they need $100,000 in equipment and building improvements. The most important segment of that fund shortage is the $60,000 needed to upgrade to digital technology.
Changes in the movie industry have made it nearly impossible for theaters to survive without the digital conversion.
Jeers go out to the folks who insist on pushing the envelope when it comes to rules requiring them to keep their property clean.
Recently, the Finding Windom committee held a "Beautification Meeting" designed to raise awareness about Windom's deteriorating appearance. The group's goal is to make neatness and tidiness a priority for residents, businesses and the community as a whole.
Plans are for the committee to appear before the Windom city council at its March 20 meeting. We are confident that the council will do everything in its power to help clean-up Windom. After all, improving Windom's appearance was listed high on Windom's priority list during last year's long-range planning process.
We have no doubt that this is a common issue for cities all across America. If anyone can bring forth an example of a community that has conquered this problem, we urge them to bring it to the attention of the Windom city council or Finding Windom.
Who knows, maybe there's a simple solution out there that would fit Windom's situation perfectly.
Cheers go out to area wrestlers who competed in last week's Minnesota State High School Wrestling Tournament at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
The four Windom-Mt. Lake Cobra wrestlers who competed in St. Paul were: Wyatt Stevens, fourth place; Joe Fischenich, fifth place; Jared Willaby, sixth place; and Vince Johnson, who came within an eyelash of placing at the state tournament. In addition, a Red Rock Central student, Spencer Jenniges, captured second place in the tournament.
At Sunday's welcome home celebration for the Cobra wrestlers, Coach Brad Schlomann noted that his team faced an extremely tough schedule this past season. Late in the season, it was obvious that the grueling schedule paid off with significant success for the entire squad. As a team, the Cobras knocked off the highly-rated number one seed, Lake Crystal- Wellcome Memorial (with a 20-3 record) and, in the section finals, went toe-to-toe with a Sibley East team which placed fourth in the state tournament.
Congratulations on another wonderful season for Cobra wrestlers, coaches and fans!
Jeers go out to the University of Minnesota for its decision to keep Gopher Women's Basketball Coach Pam Borton's contract extension under wraps.
The U deserves a mighty "Jeer," if for no other reason than being stupid (a cardinal sin for an institution of higher learning).
How long did they think they could keep the $485,000 per year deal a secret? Did they not understand that the press might get suspicious when Borton's original contract expired.
The Star Tribune broke the story last week and called it a "contract blunder" in Tuesday's editorial. Outgoing University athletic director Joel Maturi apparently gave Borton the two-year extension, last year before leaving his position.
The Trib asked new athletic director Norwood Teague about the extension and he apparently replied that he was made aware of it "on the back end." However, the Star Tribune's editorial writer correctly pointed out that Teague had plenty of time to set the record straight.
In failing this transparency test, the University has essentially demonstrated once again that the secret decision - or the concealment of it - is ultimately more damaging than the decision itself. This is a good lesson for any public body, whether it be at the national, state, or local level.
- Rahn Larson









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