11-29-12 Waconia Patriot Letters to the Editor

Sugarbush resident can’t support park trail

To the editor:

Your October article titled “Assessments part of 2013 Infrastructure Project” left many residents of the Sugarbush Neighborhood scratching their heads over the construction of a trail in Sugarbush Park. This proposed construction involves connecting the end of the existing Sugarbush neighborhood trail to the current path running adjacent to Waconia Parkway.
The proposed plan is to make a path which would split at the end of the current path and run one segment to the northwest then curving north following the ridgeline of the flood plain area and through the right outfield of the ballpark.
In order to build this segment it would require relocating the playground that is currently there.
The eastern segment would run from the end of the current trail and follow the property lines on the east side of the park and go straight north to connect to the Parkway path immediately behind the backstop that is currently there.
In addition to the construction of this path, it is also proposed to reduce the incline at the entrance to the path from the Sugarbush neighborhood. This work would require removal of some mature Sugar Maple trees that line the path and in part give the neighborhood its namesake. This new path work would also require cutting into and changing the slope of lawn for two property owners, one being mine.
The cost to this project is proposed at approximately $53,000.
I have talked with several neighbors and asked their opinion on this project. I have yet to hear one comment in support of it.
Given the cost, redundancy of the paths, interference of the ballpark and the need to move a perfectly good playground, I do not see any the rationale for the project. I appreciate necessary repair and improvements to city infrastructure.
That aside, wouldn’t the money be better spent to improve our city streets or offset assessments of other proposed projects rather than laying down a ribbon of blacktop through the lush grass of Sugarbush Park? Simply put, I would like to see the proposed Sugarbush trail reconstruction/construction portion cut from the 2013 Infrastructure Improvement project.

Karl Swee
Accountability must rest on county commissioners

To the editor:

Yes, I will apologize to commissioners Mr. Tim Lynch and Mr. Ische. I was a bit short with the information regarding the sale of the skid loader. However, I still believe the letter that I wrote in the Oct. 18th edition of the newspaper was not misleading. I find it odd that a taxpayer who shows other voters in his county how fiscal responsibility is lacking should apologize!
County government has put itself where it doesn’t belong using our tax dollars.
The ballroom business and senior living are two good examples. Both of these businesses belong in the private sector. This would give us two more businesses, more private sector jobs and a broader tax base. This type of a mindset also will shrink Carver Country government. I feel that homeowners and property owners and small business owners can relate to this.
It is amazing to note all the foreclosures listed in the paper for years now. This tells me that those of us remaining will have to pick up on the taxes required to run county government. It is very important that “We the People” watch what our local Carver County government departments are doing. Some of this accountability must rest its head on the shoulders of our commissioners.
Another area that our local government can apologize is in its lack of respect for wetlands.
I and others have noted how housing is allowed to sit on top of wetlands. The importance of wetlands is in water filtering, wild life and recreational uses. Good drinking water is important to most county residents.
Another good example of this lack of respect for wetlands is the placement of the radio tower in Hollywood township. The tower was placed almost in the center of a wetland area. This is a county project that both Mr. Lynch and Mr. Ische were involved with. For most of Carver County residents the radio tower business is a mystery. Can you, Mr. Lynch and Mr. Ische, apologize for not keeping us informed about ownership of the radio tower, the deals that were made with John Linder, and the lease payment that county government makes each year?
Win or lose, we the taxpayers have the right to know.

Mark Wickenhauser
Waconia township