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.nok Hok
    GAMES DAY—Finn Molitierno (right) celebrates a goal during a game of Nok Hockey with his sister, Kyla. The two tried out a variety of games Saturday at Stair District Library’s annual International Games Day event. One of the activities featured a sort of scavenger hunt in which participants had to locate facts presented in the Smithsonian Hometown Teams exhibit. The traveling show left Morenci’s library Tuesday, wrapping up a series of programs that began Oct. 2. Additional photos are on page 7.
  • Station.2
    STRANGE STUFF—Morenci Elementary School students learn that blue isn’t really blue when seen through the right color of lens. Volunteer April Pike presents the lesson to students at one of the many stations brought to the school by the COSI science center. The theme of this year’s visit was the solar system.
  • Front.leaves
    MAPLE leaves show their fall colors in a puddle at Morenci’s Riverside Natural Area. “This was a great year for colors,” said local weather watcher George Isobar. Chilly mornings will give way to seasonable fall temperatures for the next two weeks.
  • Front.band
    MORENCI Marching Band member Brittany Dennis keeps the beat Friday during the half-time show of the Morenci/Pittsford football game. Color guard member Jordan Cordts is at the left. The band performed this season under the direction of Doyle Rodenbeck who served as Morenci’s band director in the 1970s. He’s serving as a substitute during a family leave.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.
  • Front.cowboy
    A PERFORMER named Biligbaatar, a member of the AnDa Union troupe from Inner Mongolia, dances at Stair District Library last week during a visit to the Midwest. The nine-member group blends a variety of traditions from Inner and Outer Mongolia. The music is described as drawing from “all the Mongol tribes that Genghis Khan unified.” The group considers itself music gatherers whose goal is to preserve traditional sounds of Mongolia. Biligbaatar grew up among traditional herders who live in yurts. Additional photos are on the back page of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.bear
    HOLDEN HUTCHISON gives a hug to a black bear cub—the product of a taxidermist’s skills—at the Michigan DNR’s Great Youth Jamboree. The event on Sunday marked the fourth year of the Jamboree. Additional photos are on page 12.

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