Sunday, July 05, 2009

Priorities in Saginaw, MI

The Saginaw News published my letter here.

Here is the text, for readers' convenience:
A letter on Friday, June 26, to The Saginaw News urges readers to donate to the Saginaw fireworks display to make it better than Bay City's. Two days later, the editorial board published a story noting that 65 Saginaw County school teachers have been laid off.

With Saginaw's dismal economic outlook, we must be careful where to place our pride. Instead of spending roughly $70,000 on fireworks to compete with our neighbor, perhaps we can donate $20,000 of that to Bay City for some outstanding Tri-City fireworks, and Bay City can respond by opening up more space for Saginaw vendors.

This would strengthen bonds with Bay City, and we can then donate the remaining $50,000 to our public schools to keep more of our talented teachers' jobs or help attract even more talent to the area.

Nobody will move to Saginaw because it has the best fireworks one night of the year. But with small compromises like this, we can compete to have the best schools in the area 365 days of the year - something that would actually encourage smart families to stay in Saginaw.