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LETTER: Beaver Creek Community finds state's reasoning on prison site insulting
Whether it be the country, the state, the county or the township, I've always believed that the balance of power should go to the citizens thereof. Our leaders are elected not to rule, but to lead us in the attainment of our goals.
Fortunately in South Dakota, if there is a question as to what most of the people want, we have methods to bring it to a vote. One of the foundations of our government, majority rule, has worked well for us, and I believe in the concept of everyone having one vote, one voice. However, when deciding on an issue, I kind of think we should pay a little more attention to, and listen a little more, to those directly affected. It's easy to say wind energy is good, but you should really go spend some time near a windmill before you force someone else to.
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The Department of Corrections is quoted as saying one of their main reasons for choosing this site for the new prison is that there is no community there. That is astounding news to those of us who live here. The Beaver Creek Community was founded before the present prison was built, and is still alive and well.
I can tell you that before this issue, everyone within two miles of the site already knew each other. We know each other's vehicles and we look out for each other. I think not many square blocks in a city can say the same. We just happen to live further apart because we enjoy our privacy and peace. That is why we stayed here, or came here. Many are young families with small children. This intrusion would put an end to that. The community would be destroyed.
All we ask is that the state look at alternatives and trade this property for a more suitable site, which they have a long history of doing, where infrastructure is available and commercial development is desirable and useful, leaving our community zoned residential and agricultural.
Once again, I say I hope everyone has the opportunity to at least pursue their dream, and to have a care for the dreams of those around you, and be watchful of those who don't care at all.
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