Tuesday, December 05, 2023

Letters to the editor Oct. 1

| October 1, 2023 12:00 AM

Business owner supports Hunter

Living in Kalispell and working at Rocky Mountain Outfitter for over 30 years has given me plenty of opportunities to witness change in our community and see the kind of leadership that brought us to where we are now.

Our community is fortunate to presently have Ryan Hunter on the City Council and I whole-heartedly endorse him for another term.

With Kalispell at a critical crossroads, we need leaders who are prepared to make decisions about complex issues. Ryan’s background and education have uniquely prepared him to do just that. His education in community planning, previous job experiences in environmental and job development, as well as his experience on the City Council, make him a candidate who understands the challenges that Kalispell faces. I have admired his common-sense proposals designed to solve problems with an eye to fiscal restraint. At every Council meeting he displays a deep grasp of the issues, their causes, andoffers long-term solutions that will serve our community most effectively.

We need someone on the Kalispell City Council whose primary concern is the quality of life for those of us who have chosen to make this place our home. Ryan’s ability to speak on behalf of the folks who live here with a sensible approach makes him among the best local leaders I have seen. He has the same priorities for Kalispell that we all share: a place that maintains responsible budgets with development that improves on all of the things we love about living here.

As a business owner whose focus is helping people get out and enjoy the beauty of this place, local leadership like the kind that Ryan provides is critical to the continued prosperity of Kalispell. Now, more than ever; informed, creative and visionary leadership is needed and Ryan Hunter fits the bill.

— Jandy Cox, Kalispell

Misplaced spending

Let me tell you why I voted against the Whitefish High School bond.

The bond will raise our taxes by an average $146.59+ for every property owner (and their renters) every year for 20 years. Importantly, of the $33.7 million, $22.1 million is for classrooms and labs. I fully support that $22.1 million. But $11.6 million is for new athletic facilities.

To be blunt, your kids will not be going to the Olympics because they get these facilities. They can learn the value of teamwork without this. One third of the levy is in support of bleachers and permanent bathrooms.

The bond will avoid the costs of, “We have to fertilize, and we have to mow, and we have to stripe, and we have to put goal posts in and then take them down” for $11.6 million.

As a father of three, who for over 10 years coached and refereed kids soccer, I contend this is grossly misplaced spending.

Please remember this editorial when you complain about your property taxes.

— David Martin, Whitefish

Fund the next stage of Whitefish High

Now is the time to vote yes for the Whitefish High School bond. Our community has experienced significant growth in the last five years, and we have seen increased enrollment at our middle school and high school. Our current high school is bursting at the seams with an enrollment of 635 students in a building that was meant for 600.

In addition to creating enough learning space for up to 880 students, the new bond will provide a much-needed athletic space. School-sponsored sports provide unique opportunities for team building as a student body and a community at large. The track is the only outdoor high school sporting facility we currently own and it needs major repairs. Football, soccer, and tennis all play on rented facilities.

In 2003 and again in 2008 Whitefish voters rejected a high school bond. In 2014 voters passed a $14 million bond to renovate the high school which was much paired down from the original 2003 proposal. The current bond will create a learning space similar to the original request, as well as adding athletic facilities.

One of the best gifts we can give our children is an education for the future. We love living here because of the true sense of community, generosity, and philanthropy that makes Whitefish great. It is time to come together as a community to fund the next stage for Whitefish High School that supports both academics and athletics. We hope you will join us in voting yes for the Whitefish High School bond.

— Leif and Gloria Nelson, Whitefish

Campaign mischief

To whoever took the campaign sign out of my front yard: Thanks, you just motivate me to campaign harder!

All of the signs you removed around town were placed on personal property with permission of property owner. Careful, there are cameras.

P.S. Could I have the metal stakes back? They are borrowed and can be reused instead of thrown in the trash. Bringing back the recycling discussion is one of my city council goals.

— Nancy Schuber is a candidate for Whitefish City Council

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