Letter to the Editor:
My name is Mary Ball and I am a candidate for District 6 alderperson in the upcoming April 5, 2016 election. You may remember that I ran for this position in the 2013 election cycle. I would like to thank the constituents in my district who signed my candidacy papers for this election cycle. I was welcomed into people’s homes and had some really nice conversations during that time. While no other candidate is seeking this position in this election cycle, I wanted to re-familiarize District 6 residents with who I am.
My husband, Tom, and I have lived at 1701 Cotter Avenue for twenty-four years and are proud to be raising our children in a great neighborhood and district.
I currently provide administrative support at Bridges Virtual Academy (BVA), a virtual charter school affiliated with Merrill Area Public Schools. I serve as the treasurer of the Merrill Wrestling Club and have served in numerous volunteer leadership and service roles at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church/School and at Merrill Area Public Schools. My past employment experiences include working at Merrill Area Public Schools and Northcentral Technical College. My educational background includes a bachelor’s degree in Public Administration and an associate’s degree in Marketing.
I currently serve as a member of the Merrill Enrichment Committee for the Merrill Area Community Enrichment Center (MACEC) and I participated in both the Merrill Police Department and Merrill Fire Department’s Citizens Academy. These were both great opportunities to learn more about the services these departments provide our city and the budget processes as well.
I look forward to talking with more of my fellow District 6 constituents and neighbors in the upcoming weeks and I encourage people to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Thank you for the opportunity and your consideration.
Candidate, District 6 Alderperson
Lincoln Hills Problems:
I watched the debate between Hilary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. She didn’t speak very highly of Gov. Walker. She was very leary of Gov. Walker’s proposal of giving $23 million toward the student tuition in college. She also stated Wisconsin needed to get their unions back. Where is Walker going to get the money from? From busting the unions at Lincoln Hills and others.
I worked from 1996-2003 at LHS. The union and management kept youth pretty much under control while I was there.
Since I retired and the union gone things have deteriorated badly. The union doesn’t have a voice in anything. They are told by management what they want. The discipline is gone. Counselors have no say so. They are to keep hands off youth, even fights.
In the cottage I was in, we had a work program. That was discontinued. They said the kids had to work too hard. Where else are they going to learn how to work? They don’t learn this on the street.
In my opinion and talking to employees I know Gov. Walker is as much to blame as anyone for these problems. Management and employees have got to be able to work together.
About the abuse, I believe it’s overblown. If you believe the youth, they lied before they came to LHS and I found out they haven’t changed. You can’t believe them before the counselors.
My seven years, I saw no abuse of youth. I talked to a recent retiree of 20 years or so and he didn’t see any abuse either.
Gov. Walker said he may have to close LHS. They tried that while I was there and failed.
The governor wants it so they move youth to Milwaukee. This shouldn’t happen. The jobs are needed here.
Now when I worked here we had training for a week and classes afterward. I heard they had one day now. That’s not enough.
Now the FBI was sent there to investigate. Are they going to listen to the youth… the kids know they can lie and get away with it.
These youth are some of the most violent. They should be disciplined and held accountable. They will never learn otherwise.
We have to keep an eye on Gov. Walker, what he does next.
I believe the employees deserve better than what’s been told.
Don’t let the governor and the politicians get their way in Madison.
I’ve talked to many of the employees and retirees, they have the same opinion. We have to listen to them and keep this place open.
While I was there, many of the staff were beaten by youth and laid up for a major period of time. I also heard of many injured since. I myself was punched in the left lip by a youth. They are violent youth and look for someone to hit for no reason.
Let’s keep LHS open if possible.
To the Editor,
The Merrill Winterfest Sled Dog Race was blessed to run its 17th year at the Pine River School for Young Learners east on Hwy. 64. With little snow on the ground, the original date of Jan. 23 & 24 was postponed. A major sled race in northcentral Minnesota set for Feb. 13 & 14 was canceled on Friday, Feb. 5 due to lack of snow. Thus the opportunity for Merrill was now opened… if it could be put together in five days!
Trail inspectors deemed the race site to now have sufficient snow to have a sanctioned race. The attitude in the Merrill area was very supportive to bring mushers into our town for the weekend of Feb. 13 & 14. So, let the work begin!
A great core of volunteers got the trail groomed, Christmas trees distributed along troublesome trail areas, trail corners marked, parking lot plowed, reestablish advertising times and make countless communications.
A big thank you goes out to the many landowners in Pine River who give access to the trails for this event. A big thank you to the many businesses that help support this event and put the Merrill name in front of visiting mushers and spectators. Some of these major names are: Merrill Area Chamber, Lincoln Community Bank, Bronsteatter Snow Tracks, Peterson Bussing LLC, PR Mobil/Arby’s, Knab Insurance Agency, Merrill Vet Clinic, Merrill Foto News, Merrill Ace Hardware, Econolodge, AmericInn, Brickner’s Park City, Kelly’s Kreations, Pine River Town Garage, Merrill Area Ham Radio Operators, Merrill NAPA, Pine River First Responders, trail and road crossing volunteers and the Wisconsin Trailblazers Sled Dog Club.
Merrill is a great community!