Trout Lake Newswriters
Pat Arnold, 395-2233
Shirley Keran, 395-2559
Sandi Thygesen, 395-2318
Terry Scott, 395-2760
Many here have been touched in personal ways by the events of September 11, although the effects are much less immediate for Trout Lake than for those living in New York. At least one Trout Lake family has a son living in NYC, thankfully not harmed, and many have family members in military service. Let us remember that death will come to all of us, tragically to some, as we have seen in New York and in our own community. Let this knowledge lead us to live in ways that make our families and communities healthy, as they will be our protection, our security, and our legacy.
I personally was raised with a strong ethic for public service as one necessary element to a life well-lived. I hope, therefore that readers will not dismiss the rest of this column as unimportant or mundane, but will join me in being grateful for those who are willing to shoulder a part of the public enterprise.
To proceed. Will there be a candidates' forum? School board and community council elections will be on their respective ballots on election day. There are three school board positions. Jim Wells runs unopposed, but the other two positions are contested. Denise Heard and Cheryl Mack are running for one position. The other had three candidates, reduced by the primary now to two, SunDee Yarnell and David Woodruff.
Community Council candidates are not yet known, since the process is different. Those interested in running should procure a form from Monte Pearson, Ken Belieu, Denise Heard or any other council member. The form should be completed and submitted to the council before the Oct. 10 meeting. Candidates statements will be heard at the Oct. 10 meeting, which is held at the grange at 8 p.m.
Community Council has four positions in the election. Council by-laws require that people appointed during a term must run in the next scheduled election. Under this requirement, John Dean, Jim White, and Ray Thygesen will run, in the positions to which they have been appointed for the rest of the normal term. Successful candidates in these three positions will again face election at the normal time for each position. Jeff Baker is running for re-election for his position on the regular schedule.
If you are interested in running and want to sort out which position is which and what is the remaining time for the three mid-term elections, call Monte Pearson, this year's election chair.
Also, election day volunteers are needed for the Community Council election, and Monte is again the person to call.
The council hopes that there are many candidates, and that none of them are long-winded, as the Oct. 10 agenda also includes preliminary consideration of projects for landfill funds. This process has been developing for several years, and this year for the first time the county has provided written guidelines. An initial list of projects must be submitted to the county by Nov. 1, substantially earlier than in past years. The guidelines, developed primarily in response to concerns about the appropriate use of public funds, are not completely clear, and the council hopes to have a county representative at the October meeting to answer questions.
Trout Lake and other small unincorporated communities are somewhat disadvantaged in this process by not having any government apparatus to manage projects. Not only are there requirements about who spends money and how, there are ongoing maintenance issues with some projects.
So far TL has found ways to get things done. Two TL projects have been handed off to county departments. One, public showers in the county park, should be completed this winter by the Parks Department and will be maintained by the Parks Department. The other, an overlook spot on the TL - Glenwood road, was taken on by the Road Department and included in the paving project currently underway.
Other projects have come from the Fire Department (all purchases of equipment) and have been implemented by the fire department. Glacier Springs water has brought projects, although the county now says it won't fund water association projects. The school district brought a proposal last year that was not funded, but could well be, and again, the school district would manage the project. Any school district project would have to be of general public benefit, and could not include normal district expenditures such as purchase of text books or computers that would not be available for public use.
However, there are other projects included in the action plan and mentioned nearly every year that do not have sponsors. Two of these are a bike and foot path along the highway and a town square idea. Last week's newswriter had her own idea for litter police. None of these can be proposed unless a manager is found, and the county thus far has been unwilling to undertake management of projects, except when they fit clearly into an on-going department activity.
I apologize to you faithful readers that this column doesn't include more variety of news, especially since I missed my column after Labor Day, when I forgot the early deadline that goes with a three-day weekend. This week the column falls in the harvest at the orchard, and life has been reduced, as always during harvest, to work, eat, sleep, work. You can find lots of advice on how to simplify your life, but working a harvest will actually do it for you cheap.