Et Cetera …

Rebates get results

One positive way to enact change is to give people an incentive to do something, rather than punish them if they do not. So it is in Fairmont, where commercial and residential utility customers have netted more than $1.3 million in rebates in the past five years. They scored this cash by installing LED lighting or buying energy-efficient appliances.

The school district and the city also have undertaken major lighting projects.

The result is less demand for electricity, which saves people money, and less need to produce it, which saves resources. This is good news.

Council: Let music play

The Fairmont City Council is to be congratulated for its decision this week to take no official action to regulate outdoor music in the city. The council and city staff also deserve kudos for researching and discussing the issue with citizens before jumping to any kind of conclusion.

As several council members noted, people in Fairmont really do not have a problem with musical performances at businesses on the lakes. And the “handshake” agreement between the city and those establishments to end the songs at 11:30 p.m. has been well-received.

PAC getting seats, lights

The Performing Arts Center at Fairmont High School is a local jewel. It is utilized not only by students and staff at the school but by popular entities such as Borchardt Dance Company and the concert series. It is, in other words, a community venue.

It also has been something of a bargain in terms of renovations. Built in 1970, the seats in the theater are the originals. The lighting is not yet LED. But this is all changing.

The district is undertaking a needed upgrade of seating and lighting in the facility. It will then serve the community even better in the future.

Agencies erred badly

A report out this week says two Minnesota state agencies are to blame for the state’s disastrous new driver’s license and vehicle registration system. Officials at the Department of Public Safety and Office of Minnesota Information Technology Services failed in many ways to ensure the system’s success.

The report notes that more than nine years and $100 million went into the “planning” and execution of the project, which would have succeeded with proper oversight.

Now, of course, more must be spent to resolve the problem. But it needs to be solved.