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Why build now, why build in two phases, and why build an elementary first?


By Robin Honken

Fri, Dec 7th, 2012
Posted in Rushford Commentary

Submitted by Robin Honken, Ruth Peterson, Anne Spartz

Most of us know the issues with both the Peterson and Rushford Facilities. If you don’t, we ask that you request a tour of the buildings and see for yourself the crumbling walls, inefficient spaces, the dungeon-like rooms that house our preschoolers, the lack of bathrooms on the top level, small hallways and stairwells that would make it difficult to quickly exit in case of a fire, the small elevator that barely allows for wheelchair access, the difference in temperature from classroom to classroom. The list goes on and on. What we would like to focus on at this time however, is why build now, why build in two phases, and why build an elementary first.

Why build now? The last time the community invested in the R-P facilities was 43 years ago when the High School gymnasium was built. In addition, the current interest rates are at an all-time low. We’ve heard some say fix what we have. Certainly that is one option; however, this is a costly option. The School District has done a great job of maintaining and fixing what we have while still balancing the budget. One example of this was the installation of a $25,000 ventilation system in the wrestling room after mold was found last year and some wrestlers were getting ill during practice. But, the entire cost to renovate both facilities will run between $10-12 million in Rushford, and $1.7 million in Peterson, and then we will still have old, inefficient buildings. In order to fix what we have, we as local tax payers are going to have to foot the bill, and we still won’t see significant savings in the school district operating budget. Currently, we spend around $115,000 a year now just for electricity and heat for two facilities, which could be greatly reduced in one new energy efficient building. So, we have to ask ourselves, does that make sense?

Why build in two phases? The School Board, Administration, and members from the Facilities Task Force (volunteer local citizens) have spent countless hours researching and evaluating options, consulting with experts, visiting with and providing tours to state and local representatives, lobbying at the state, giving tours to local citizens, meeting with local businesses and groups, and much more. They have done their homework. There are some who wonder why not build the entire facility now, rather than in two phases? We would love to see that happen, but is that a l .....
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Flying the Aardvark

By Col. Stan Gudmundson

Fri, Dec 7th, 2012
Posted in All Commentary

By John S. Plantikow (Pilot) and Stanley J. Gudmundson (RN) I spent seven years flying in the right seat of an FB-111A. If there were anything I would do the rest of my life it would be to fly the 111 for two or three hours every day. What a great ..... 
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A vignette of Christmas past

By Yvonne Nyenhuis

Fri, Nov 30th, 2012
Posted in All Commentary

By Yvonne Nyenhuis During the Depression, my Father, Mother and two older sisters, Althea and Evangeline went to live with Mom’s sister, Aunt Ora in a large Victorian house in Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania. She inherited the house from my ..... 
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Civic duty calls for educating yourself with facts

By Andy Prinsen

Fri, Nov 30th, 2012
Posted in All Commentary

By Andy Prinsen In a recent letter written by a Mr. Brett Kues, he admits over and over again that he is “confused,” and in reading your letter to the editor Mr. Kues, I will second that idea. First off, I would like to thank Mr. Kues for b ..... 
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Correction

Fri, Nov 23rd, 2012
Posted in All Commentary

On the front page of the November 19, 2012, edition of the Fillmore County Journal, the caption under the photo should have read: Several members of the Empty Bowls Committee. Pictured from left to right: Marietta Dennstedt, Maureen Gervais, Ann Joh ..... 
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Right outside your door

Fri, Nov 23rd, 2012
Posted in All Commentary

By Eric Leitzen By the time you read this, you’ll most likely be nursing distended tummies following Thanksgiving… and isn’t it great? It’s a tradition that stretches back longer than there have even been traditions to speak of: lots of f ..... 
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How the district is misleading us with the proposed school funding

By Brett Kues

Fri, Nov 23rd, 2012
Posted in All Commentary

By Brett Kues Hello, my name is Brett Kues, and I must confess, I am confused about how to vote for the school tax levy. Perhaps it is because I have only lived here a few years or possibly because all my life, neither my education nor my logic pre ..... 
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Maintaining judicial independence

Fri, Nov 16th, 2012
Posted in All Commentary

By Karen Reisner With the long election process behind us, the onset of election fatigue has long ago afflicted most of us. However, I was reminded, when I turned my ballot over to look at the back while voting, that I was not prepared to vote for ..... 
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The vital issue congress won’t address

By Lee Hamilton

Fri, Nov 16th, 2012
Posted in All Commentary

By Lee Hamilton With the elections over, Congress faces a full plate of tough issues when it reconvenes. There will be a lot of talk about fiscal matters, “grand bargains,” and sorting out party caucuses. But there’s one vitally important que ..... 
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