Editor’s Desk

Posted 3/29/22

FROM THE Get out and vote I love the weeks leading up to elections, because I have the opportunity to learn about all of the candidates running for local office – school boards, county board, …

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Editor’s Desk



Get out and vote

I love the weeks leading up to elections, because I have the opportunity to learn about all of the candidates running for local office – school boards, county board, village boards, town boards and city councils. I believe as editor of our local newspaper it’s my responsibility to provide information to voters on the candidates, and I take it seriously.

I put a lot of thought into the questions sent to candidates because my goal is to help voters get to know the people who are running for office and where they stand on certain issues. It’s impossible to touch on every important issue due to time and space constraints, but we try our best to send out a well-rounded questionnaire. I took suggestions from readers on questions they would like answered. Thank you to everyone who reached out to me, whether by phone, email or out and about at community events. I had many great conversations with people, some pretty eye-opening, about the issues that matter to them. One common thread ran through them all – their love for Pierce County and their community.

By the time our election edition rolls around, I feel a bit like a nag. I “remind” people to get their questionnaires in repeatedly, but it’s not to be annoying. It’s because it really is important to me that all candidates have a voice and all voters be informed. Some are right on top of it and get them in right away. Others need a gentle reminder or five. I know it’s not because they don’t care – everyone leads busy lives.

Local elections sometimes see a low voter turnout, and I find that so disappointing. Local elections are the ones that affect us the most. School boards determine the paths of our schools and the education our children receive. Our village boards, town boards and city councils make decisions on our local roads, services, infrastructure, ordinances, licenses, too many things that affect our everyday lives to count. County boards also have a big impact on citizens’ everyday lives – they make decisions on zoning, conservation, public health, human services, agriculture, the county fair, and the big one, taxes and how that money is spent. Why more people don’t vote in local elections is frankly, beyond me.

I’ll also let you in on a secret. It irritates me to no end when people say there is no information out there about local government issues or decisions. If you read this newspaper, you know that is not true. While I sometimes wish there were two of me, I and our reporters do our very best to cover as much as we can in local government. If there’s something we’re missing, let me know and we’ll be there. We strive to be your eyes and ears so you can make informed decisions.

If you have questions about anything before voting, for the love of God, don’t rely on information you get from your neighbor’s rant on social media. Go to a meeting, call an elected official, read information from a trusted and accurate source. During a few conversations I’ve had with readers, it was apparent that a few did not have accurate information or didn’t understand an issue. This was not because I didn’t agree with their opinion. They simply had some wrong information on how things work. Some of the issues, such as school referenda, are complicated. I feel like I’m getting an education every time I go to a meeting, but I’ve learned so much. I’m not an expert, but I try to help people understand what their local government is addressing.

And lastly, thank you to all of our elected officials and those willing to serve. I’ve covered thousands of hours of meetings. I know how much work goes into serving on a board. People don’t do it for kicks and giggles – they really care. It can be quite a thankless task at times. Thank you for caring and for your hard work. It’s appreciated.

Please get out and vote on April 5 and before you do, make sure you know who and what you are voting for.