Letter: Unfair attack on Christianson
Your July 10 editorial validates the saying, "One not reading a newspaper is uninformed; one reading the newspaper is misinformed." Your unsubstantiated and personal attack against Councilman Ron Christianson is most disturbing.
You incorrectly allege that "Christianson should get his facts straight before making public allegations." You should follow your own instruction. The fact, as Christianson stated, is City Administrator Michael Schmit confirmed that the city staff made the nomination. The fact is, according to Minnesota Statute 410.05 - Subdivision 3, a city council, a charter commission, or the petitioners submit to the court the names of eligible nominees; not the city staff or mayor. Since the nominations are not the mayor's responsibility, why did he, as admitted, call the city staff nominee? The mayor's track record of pushing his weight around would prompt many to question his involvement. Your public criticism should target the city staff for not following procedure.
You accuse Christianson of "having an apparent wish to micro-manage the city staff." The fact is the procedure was not correctly followed so the issue needed to be addressed. Thus Christianson is doing his job as we -- Ward 2 -- elected him to do. He asks pertinent questions relevant to the city of Willmar's best interests and the taxpayer's money.
You insinuate with a negative connation that Christianson has an agenda by stating he "should quit... his trivial pursuit of whatever his agenda is." The fact is, according to the West Central Tribune, "Christianson said... he wanted to have involvement in nominations from council members, the Charter Commission or the public." It appears Christianson's agenda is to follow the statute and assure the citizens of Willmar an open forum, a voice and fair representation.
You state, "There is an expected responsibility of appropriate decorum by any council member." If you believe that principle, why haven't Mayor Les Heitke's inexcusable temper tantrums or former Councilman Steve Gardner's inappropriate charades been in your editorials?
The embarrassment is yours for repeatedly attacking an elected official who is dedicated to serve us with compassion, integrity, and common sense. Thank you, Councilman Christianson!