Editorial: Tribune Thumbs

Published 11:48 pm Friday, September 22, 2017

To Albert Lea native Ryan Nelson.

Kudos to Albert Lea native Ryan Nelson, who recently hiked the entire Appalachian Trial in less than six months.

The trail spans 2,200 miles and nearly 15 states and included stints through cold and rainy conditions.

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Congratulations on completing this feat. Nelson should be proud.

To a decision from Hy-Vee Inc. to build a new distribution center in Austin.

We, along with others in Albert Lea, were disappointed to hear news that Hy-Vee Inc. decided to build a new distribution center on the western edge of Austin — north of Interstate 90 by the Oakland Avenue exit.

Albert Lea was one of 12 cities considered for the project, and ended up as runner-up to Austin.

We should be proud that we surpassed 10 other cities for the project, and we hope that Hy-Vee and other businesses will consider Albert Lea again for future projects in the region.

To budget season for the city of Albert Lea, Freeborn County and the Albert Lea School District.

In the last week or two, our local government entities have passed preliminary levies and budgets for the upcoming year.

Though these are only preliminary, thus far we’re seeing increases in levies for all three entities.

The Albert Lea City Council approved a preliminary 2 percent increase in the levy — an increase that would go toward street improvements.

Freeborn County commissioners approved a preliminary maximum increase of 4 percent in the county’s levy, and the school board members approved a possible 5.1 percent levy increase.

We’ve heard a lot of rumbling since these were approved, and we encourage people to contact their local elected officials and to voice their opinions as well. Whether you think it’s justified or think it should be reduced, now is your chance to share your thoughts.

The final levies will be approved in December. They can be lowered but they cannot be raised at that time.