Read & respond: It's a function of the newspaper 2011.10.19

Written by David Green.

A couple of recent articles in the Observer brought out a reaction among some Fayette readers. Village council members may not have appreciated the response, but as we see it, everything played out the way it should—well, almost.

An article was published about a proposal to change the speed limit on Main and Fayette streets, and that drew a letter to the editor and some opinion expressed at a meeting.

Similarly, an article about a sidewalk repair proposal also brought some members of the public into a council meeting.

In each case, council members received some feedback from residents that helped form their view of the topic. That’s the way it should work: float a proposal—or in this case, discuss someone else’s proposal—and see what the public thinks. 

Perhaps council will pick up a new idea or appreciate hearing another view about a topic. Or if it’s something that no one seems to like, at least council members will have something to help back up their decision.

There’s one way where this process can fall apart, and that’s what happened recently. Sometimes the discussion proceeds merely on rumor rather than on fact. Some complaints about the sidewalk proposal were based totally on hearsay and not on information given in the newspaper. That’s when an angry citizen walks in to complain about something that doesn’t exist.

We’ll continue to cover the discussions of area governing bodies, but unfortunately, we can’t make people read the words.

  • Front.batter
    THE DERBY—Tyler “Smallpox” Flakne of Minnesota’s Home Run League All-Stars goes for the fence Friday night during the National Wiffle League Association’s home run derby in Morenci. This year the wiffleball national tournament moved from Dublin, Ohio, to Morenci’s Wakefield Park. During the derby, competitors had two minutes to hit as many home runs as possible. The winner this year finished with 21. See page 6 and 7 for additional photos.
  • Front.green Screen
    OUT OF THIS WORLD—Elizabeth McFadden and Elise Christle pose in front of the green screen as VolunTeen Noah Gilson makes them appear as though they are standing on the Moon. More photos from the Stair District Library’s NASA @ My Library program are on page 12.
  • Front.snake
    Lannis Smith of the Leslie Science and Nature Center in Ann Arbor shows off a python last week at Stair District Library's Summer Reading Program.
  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.
  • Pipeline Spread
    LINED UP—Lengths of pipe were put in place last week along the route of the Rover natural gas pipeline that will stretch from Defiance, Ohio, to Ontario, Canada. Topsoil was removed before the pipes were laid out. The 42-inch diameter pipeline is scheduled for completion in November.
  • Front.F.school
    PROGRESS continues on the agriculture classroom addition at Fayette High School. The project will add 2,900 square feet of space and include an overhead door that would allow equipment to be driven inside. The building should be ready for the start of school in August. Work on ball fields and a running track is also underway.
  • Front.rock Study
    ROCKHOUNDS—From the left, Joseph McCullough, Sean Pagett and Jonathan McCullough peer through hand lenses to study rocks. The project is part of Morenci Elementary School’s summer camp that continues into August.

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