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Open thread: March 2023
Weigh in on the Granite Peak issue and a look back at some of The Wausonian's recent stories.
Hey Wausonians - it’s our monthly open thread where you can weigh in on local issues. Unlike most of the posts, the monthly open threads are open to comments from anyone. Just remember to be respectful even in disagreement.
Last month we published a healthy amount of stories. The biggest, most eye-opening piece was breaking the news that Bridge Community had no staff doctor or dentists, despite its mission to help the underprivileged get access to medical and dental care.
I’ve heard nothing from Bridge, but I’ve heard from many who are glad the story came out. I’m disappointed other media didn’t pick up on the story. Not surprised, but disappointed.
I’ve also heard from some folks since the story launched that Smith even oversold how much dentist availability there might be at Bridge with the short-term contract dentists. I have no way to verify who is right, and its possible that was the situation but no longer was so by the time I contacted Smith. But either way, the only comments I’ve heard is that it’s good the story came out.
Also, the village of Kronenwetter looked at forming an ethics commission, and that went about as well as we’ve come to expect things to go in Kronenwetter. There are some things involving Kronenwetter I need to catch up on now, such as the village’s search for a new administrator.
And this story relied to some degree on the reporting of WAOW, which requested the records detailing the mysterious early retirement of “Officer Frank” and brought out a bigger conversation about zero tolerance policies and when to use one’s judgement over hard and fast rules.
We also took a look at a campaign finance violation alleged against current school board members by a current school board candidate.
And one of The Wausonian’s most popular posts ever came in early February. Emails obtained by The Wausonian show there appeared to be a coordinated effort to influence the Natural Resources Board to approve additional ski area at Granite Peak, undermining a years-long public input process that sought to balance everyone’s interest in the mountain’s development.
As an update, I have not heard from any of the NRB board members about whether or not they would consider a reconsideration (it has to come from a board member who voted in favor of it the first time).
For this month’s topic, I want to address Granite Peak. Should the decision to increase the ski area beyond the master plan be called back? Should it be left alone? And do you support the added ski area, or do you think it’s a bad thing?
If my question is a little un-nuanced, it’s to not influence you in how you answer. I want to get genuine opinions from you all, so leave your thoughts below!
Otherwise, that’s it for this Month’s Open Thread. Plenty of more stories coming over the rest of March - and I’ll give you a hint: at least one of them involves Kronenwetter, and it’s kind of a big one.