Letters-Key word is 'advisory'
Much has been written recently about how the voters have spoken regarding our property tax funding for our county-owned nursing home in New Richmond. Supporters, like my former county board and kindhearted colleague, Buzz Marzolf, believe board members are obligated to follow the results of the last two advisory referendums posed to the voters. It seems the important point lost in the referendum question to voters was the word "advisory".
An advisory referendum question is a tool used when a governing body can't determine the wishes of the public. In the case of our county-owned nursing home, the wishes of an uninformed public resulted in the expected outcome of support to keep the home open in every municipality but one. With a high effort made in the town of Hudson to give almost every household the detailed information board members had concerning the county-owned nursing home's operation, citizens in that district voted not to continue giving county tax levy to the home.
Conducting an advisory referendum on non-required programs is not only a sign of poor representation, but of poor government as well. It was Edmund Burke who said, "A representative owes the people not only his industry, but his judgment, and he betrays them if he sacrifices it to their opinion." The public can't continually be expected to render every decision. If so, then your representative has failed you. It's industry which hones our judgment with successful industry decisions bringing good fortune to every class of people. Our county-owned nursing home's financial failing is not because of the service it provides, it's due to kindhearted attitudes believing they can overcome industry standards in a free world. Mob rule democracy, like socialism, has failed every time tried, and our county-owned nursing home in New Richmond is a shining reminder.
Steve Hermsen, Hudson