Viewpoints

Wed
15
Apr

Letter to the Editor: Questions for Rep. Patti Ruff

To the Editor:
During the past several weeks, 56th Iowa House District Representative Ruff has been editorializing in the Waukon Standard about the lack of progress on a bill that is stalled in the State House to fund Iowa schools.
In early January Ruff reported that she had proposed an amendment that would have increased spending for Iowa schools by 6 percent. She also told us it was defeated on a party line vote. That implies that the Republicans are responsible for not passing legislation for school funding. What Ruff did not tell us was how she planned to pay for that 6 percent increase. It was a not too subtle effort at pandering to the education vote, but with the clear understanding that our representative is not really seeking a practical solution since she offered no way to fund her own proposal and has offered no fiscally sound solutions for resolving the issue.

Wed
15
Apr

News from the State House

by State Representative Patti Ruff

I received the final update on the CWD sample collection that went on in Allamakee. More than 100 deer were collected as part of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources surveillance effort looking for chronic wasting disease near Harpers Ferry in late February and early March.
Tissue samples from 85 of the adult deer collected were sent to the National Veterinary Services Lab in Ames for testing and all 85 samples came back as not detected. All collectors have been notified of the results.
Although the number of samples collected was less than the goal of 200, the results are encouraging and suggest that CWD may not be established at a significant level.
The DNR has scheduled a public meeting in the Harpers Ferry Community Center, 238 North Fourth Street, at 6:30 p.m. this Thursday,  April 16th to solicit input and begin planning for continued surveillance this summer and fall.

Wed
15
Apr

The Bottom Line

by State Senator Mike Breitbach

Wed
15
Apr

And then I wrote...

by Dick Schilling, Editor Emeritus

Wed
15
Apr

Word for Word

by Rev. Kim Gates
Pastor of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church and
Forest Mills United Methodist Church

Wed
08
Apr

Letter to the Editor: Set differences aside and compromise on school fudning

To the Editor:
I recently asked Superintendent Dave Herold what the meager Republican school funding proposal would mean for Allamakee Community School District students.
Here is some of what he wrote: “We will need to reduce staff which will lower student achievement, lessen dual enrollment offerings, and raise class sizes for all K-12 grades. We will also need to look at eliminating some fine arts programs if we only receive 1.25% SSA. Career and Technical Education programs will need to be cut as well.”
I appreciated Superintendent Herold’s response and the similar responses from educators and school board members across the state.
Many also asked me a question: How did school funding get to be so partisan?  
I wish I knew. Most Iowans value our state’s leadership in education and want to maintain it. Great local schools are valuable assets to our communities.

Wed
08
Apr

Letter to the Editor: Balance the needs of Iowa schools with the needs of taxpayers

To the Editor:
Every session the question facing the legislature is how to fit Iowans’ priorities within the constraints of state revenue.
For years, state government in Iowa operated much like it does in Washington, D.C. – spend more than they have, send taxpayers into debt, and pass hard decisions off to future lawmakers.  Each year another legislature came to Des Moines, spent every last dime of taxpayer money – even money they knew wouldn’t be there the following year. The breaking point came when Governor Culver and legislative Democrats not only had spent more than the state had, they leveraged the state into debt… and then the economy dropped out. Scrambling, Governor Culver took an axe to the budget – indiscriminately slashing it by 10 percent.  By far the biggest casualties of this action were Iowa’s schools.

Wed
08
Apr

Letter to the Editor: Celebrating 29 years of alcohol awareness

To the Editor:
Every April, the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence (NCADD) has sponsored Alcohol Awareness Month to increase the public’s awareness and understanding of alcoholism and alcohol-related issues. The theme for this 29th year of awareness is “For the Health of It: Early Education on Alcoholism and Addiction.”
This year, Helping Services for Northeast Iowa and Northeast Iowa Behavioral Health want everyone - especially youth - to understand the importance of treatment and prevention of alcoholism. Early education encourages individuals and their families to remain aware of the issue and empowers them to take action to prevent alcoholism.

Wed
08
Apr

Letter to the Editor: Keeping teens safe after Prom

To the Editor:
Prom Night... means different things to different people. To the students, it’s a chance to dress formally, enjoy time with friends, and stay out all night.
To a parent, there is always a concern to keep the students safe on this special night.
For many years now, our community has done just that with a safe, substance-free, post-prom celebration for all Waukon High School students and guests.
From midnight to 4 a.m., the teens have a good time playing various games, eating donated food, and winning prizes that have been donated or purchased at a discount from local businesses. This year we are adding some new entertainment and games as well as continuing the popular hypnotist performance.  Our goal is to get as many students as possible to the post-prom celebration - and keep them there so they are not out driving the streets, abusing substances, or putting themselves in danger.

Wed
08
Apr

News from the State House

by Patti Ruff, State Representative

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