Editorial: Tribune Thumbs

Published 12:40 am Saturday, September 2, 2017

To the House Capital Investment Committee for coming to check out Albert Lea’s bonding requests.

Thanks to the House Capital Investment Committee for traveling to Albert Lea Wednesday to hear about three major Albert Lea projects vying for bonding dollars from the state.

The first project, for $10.1 million, would renovate outdated space at Riverland Community College and relocate the college’s truck driving and collision programs from Austin to Albert Lea. It would integrate the programs into shared spaces with auto service and diesel programs.

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The project would also help fill a need for skilled workers to fill open jobs.

The second project would construct a bridge across Albert Lea Lake to connect Blazing Star Trail from Albert Lea to Hayward. The Legislature first authorized the existence of the trail in 1996, but not enough funding has been secured to connect the trail over the lake.

City officials also discussed their request for funding for development of Blazing Star Landing. The city is requesting $4 million this year to relocate Front Street closer to the railroad to allow for private development along Albert Lea Lake.

We believe these are all worthwhile projects, and we hope state leaders will support them.

To the finalization of three funding agreements for the construction of the arrival and departure building and parking lot at the airport.

We are glad to hear that work is moving forward for the construction of a new arrival and departure building and parking lot at the Albert Lea airport. Construction is slated to begin this month and be completed by summer 2018.

The project is being paid for through state and federal dollars, with the city paying  less than $436,000 of the $2.15 million project.

To Southwest Middle School teacher Robin Viktora.

We and others were proud to hear that one of our own Albert Lea High School graduates has returned home after attending college to teach social studies at Southwest Middle School.

Robin Viktora teaches U.S. history and U.S. government and said she hopes her classroom can be a place where students are motivated to succeed.

We thank Viktora for her investment in the community, and hope she has a great school year.