Below is an excerpt from Beth's editorial from this week.  The entire editorial may be found in this week's print copy of the Weston Chronicle or online here.

Beth McPherson, Editor

We wish former President Trump well as he recovers from a gunshot wound last weekend. Assassinations have no place in our system of government. Let’s settle things at the ballot box.

Speaking of ballot boxes, be sure to vote August 6. There are local and state candidates and issues that are important to us.

Like the jail addition. Commissioner Fricker Monday night said if one or both ballot issues fail, they’ll come back with a different proposal, maybe. “The need is there, so we’d probably have the same jail addition plan, but maybe a different funding formula.”

Like maybe straight answers. 

Commissioner Fricker’s attempts to NOT answer questions about if they were doing something to improve Platte County’s bond rating were so tortured it’s a wonder the audience (of about 30 people) didn’t end up screaming. The answer, apparently, was “nothing.” But that’s hard to admit.

Sad to say, they have resources they don’t appear to be using. Former Commissioners Michael Short and Betty Knight led a successful issue to build the present jail. It had a projected life-span of 25 years. They were able to make the case quite well. 

Things are different now, of course. Salaries are way up and the Law Enforcement Sales Tax isn’t going to cover the amount needed for new jail personnel, as far as we know. So salaries are part of what the Jail Tax will cover.

Only the salaries and expenses for those working in the jail can be used from the new Jail Tax, so look for a vote on renewal of the Law Enforcement 1/4¢ Sales Tax in about five years.

There’s that pesky bond rating that’s going to make the bond or loan payments really expensive.

Medical costs are up considerably.

And no one really can say what the numbers will be after about five years into the projections. That’s why the Commissioners aren’t worried about there being “too much” money left when the sales tax runs out in 20 years. There may have been a recession in that amount of time, so no surplus at all. Or the county might have to pay that 7.5 percent interest. 
Making sure there are millions of extra dollars, potentially to pay the bills, is now regarded as “conservative.”

I suppose we could just give the Commissioners the benefit of the doubt - on the use of $400 million. That is what the voters will decide.

  Opinion and Local

The Weston Chronicle

​​Weston • Platte County • Missouri