Daily Republic Editorial Board
HISSES to the arctic chill that blasted the Midwest over the New Year's holiday weekend. Actual temperatures of 20 degrees below zero? Wind chills as low as 40 degrees below zero? Yikes. We hope everyone was safe over the holiday weekend and remembered to bundle up when they had to battle the frigid winter air. We think of all the first responders such as law enforcement and firefighters who were on duty serving us and ensuring our safety while they were out and about in the cold.
CHEERS to the citizens who attended a Mitchell City Council meeting last week and shared their concerns about a reconstruction effort on Sanborn Boulevard. It appears as though the City Council may be on track toward considering a hybrid construction plan that shuts down the portion on Sanborn between Havens and First avenues for a shorter period of time than initially expected — and we suspect that's due to the citizens who shared their concerns about possible loss of business from the project.
CHEERS to Dick and Darlene Muth and Muth Electric for its significantly generous donation of $1.1 million to Mitchell Technical Institute last week. When Dick Muth stood at the podium during Thursday night's announcement, it was evident MTI has played an enormous role in his life. Mitchell Tech is getting some outstanding upgrades and endowment opportunities due to what's now the largest single donation to in the school's history. This is quite the gift and a great, great way to give back.
It seems like everywhere we go in Mitchell someone has the answer to addressing water quality issues at the city's lake. Now, armed with three preliminary scenarios to solve Lake Mitchell's algae woes, Omaha-based water quality specialist Fyra Engineering is the latest to throw its hat into the restoration ring, aiming to answer a decades long problem. But let's not go ahead and treat Fyra Engineering like a snake oil salesperson looking to make a quick buck from a city desperate to fix its lake.
CHEERS to the great community turnout last week for the annual Mitchell Parade of Lights. Mitchell’s Main Street was filled with support to celebrate in anticipation of the holidays. We were pleased to see a wonderful parade on a wintry evening in Mitchell. Kudos to all the businesses that put extra time into making their floats extraordinary to allow a great night to be had by all.
"South Dakota is working," Gov. Dennis Daugaard likes to remind the state's residents. Amid the announcement of another lean budget year due to disappointing sales tax collections, Daugaard on Tuesday explained South Dakota will continue to be fiscally responsible, a feat the Republican governor has taken pride over for years. "Maybe we're not able to fulfill all our wishes, but I would say we are still fulfilling our needs," Daugaard told The Associated Press on Monday.
CHEERS to the support and positive movement of Mitchell's downtown. Following the frantic Black Friday deals, people were enjoying Mitchell's Main Street for Small Business Saturday in search of holiday gifts. And, for the shoppers who aren't as familiar with Mitchell's streets, the two-way downtown roads were likely easier to figure out than the old one-ways. About six months ago, Mitchell's downtown switched to all two-way streets in hopes of achieving easier routes for tourists. With no crashes due to the change, we're calling this a win for Mitchell.
As November wraps up and many hunting seasons slowly come to an end, it's important for us to remember a sometimes thankless job that's so important to our state. Conservation officers, aka game wardens, with the South Dakota Game, Fish & Parks Department have been working hard for the past few months doing their best to ensure outdoor enthusiasts are staying within the confines of laws to protect our natural resources. But does our state have enough conservation officers? We think there's a definite need for more.
CHEERS to Mitchell City Council President Steve Rice, who has been noticeably involved in several community events recently. Rice has served on the City Council since 2012 and is often seen involved with city functions. Earlier this month, he was the lone councilperson to attend a public forum discussing improvements within the Parks and Recreation Department. We've also recently spotted Rice volunteering for the Salvation Army's Red Kettle campaign and participating in the Mitchell Baseball Association Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot.
CHEERS to the climbing cattle prices pleasantly surprising produces this season. Last week, we reported cattle prices shot up from $141.28 to $186.17 per hundredweight, padding the pockets of the same ranchers who were met with low cattle prices in 2016. Officials cited a variety of factors for the increase, but we're just happy to see a bit of good luck hit South Dakota's agriculture economy after a devastatingly dry year. The other good news is that many corn and soybean growers are also surprised with better than expected yields as harvest comes to a close.