To the Editor,
What does shop local, buy local mean to you?
I think everyone has a basic understanding of what this means but I believe there can be a very broad interpretation of this also, more than I would expect from an entity that is currently promoting shop local, buy local. Let me share what I experienced in a recent Harmony City Council meeting.
A Harmony resident has been very active in promoting and raising donations for a splash park in Harmony. They are starting to plan on groundbreaking for this spring. The city engineer has provided an estimate on costs for the first phase of construction.
According to the agenda cover sheet and meeting discussion and attachment, they also provided a list of five local contractors to ask for quotes; two are located in Rochester, one each from Elgin, Rushford and Decorah.
This struck me as odd, I believe there are others closer – Mabel, Preston, Lanesboro and Cherry Grove area. Just maybe they have the capabilities and we can support their families, locally.
The engineer also stated they did not have to publish this in the paper or advertise it so they can go direct to the five contractors on the list and review the bids. Doesn’t this lock out any other local contractors?
I’m not sure why the members of the council or any of the city employees didn’t question this since they are supposed to be looking out for the residents’ best interests and getting the best product for the lowest cost, after all that is how manufacturers and business owners stay in business. I guess it is “do as I say not as I do” in this case.
Just my 2 cents.
Resident, Harmony Minn.