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Et Cetera

Fairmont tackles nitrates

Kudos to Troy Nemmers, Fairmont city engineer/public works director. He has been working on a project for years that will remove nitrates from the watershed into Fairmont’s lakes while preserving the wetlands and wildlife. Nemmers has partnered with a number of different entities such as the University of Minnesota, the Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources, The Lessard-Sams Outdoor Heritage Council, the Fairmont Lakes Foundation, and Martin Soil and Water Conservation District.

All are to be congratulated and thanked for their efforts to help clean up Fairmont’s lakes and make our drinking water much better for everyone.

Downtown renovation

At a time when small local retailors are struggling, it’s good to see people taking an interest in keeping Fairmont’s Downtown Area strong and fresh. Fairmont City Administrator Cathy Reynolds has recruited Ned Koppen, president of the Fairmont Area Chamber of Commerce; Linsey Preuss, Fairmont economic development coordinator; Blake Potthoff, executive director of the Fairmont Opera House; and Dayna Johnson, to facilitate discussion for revitalizing Downtown Fairmont. It’s always good to see people take pride in their community, and a public discussion set for Nov. 19 at the Fairmont Opera House is just the way to go.

Water rates

Nobody likes rate hikes, but they are simply a fact of life. The Fairmont Council recently heard a recommendation about the need to raise water and wastewater rates to cover current and future costs, which could increase the average monthly residential bill by $25 to $30 over the next four years. Kris Swanson of Bolton & Menk is to be commended for stressing the importance of raising rates as time goes on. Having a contingency plan is part of having a good city government, and not having funds set aside has hurt Fairmont in the past, specifically when it comes to streets and infrastructure repairs. So making a plan for future improvements is the right way to go.

A country divided

The 2020 presidential election, with ballots still being counted, has been a wake-up call for the nation. There’s no question that the country is divided. There have been riots in the streets, claims of voter fraud, and cries of systemic racism. This is all exacerbated by a global pandemic.

At some point Americans are going to have to learn how to build bridges and work together. Our country has to heal or we all lose, no matter who wins the White House.

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