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Keep public records in the newspaper, transparent

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Buzzword in recent years is “transparency.”

Then how puzzling it is that counties and cities are making efforts to remove their legal advertising from public newspapers, not to mention scary!

Although I don’t read that part of the press much, I strongly feel taxpayers deserve the availability of what’s going on with the governments that are benefiting from taxpayer revenue.

A newspaper is a different organization from governments. That sounds trite, but it makes sense that a backup of important documents be in more than one location. What if, for whatever reason, the government office was destroyed?

What if a corrupt party or parties somehow got into elected office? Transparency evaporates.

The Detroit Lakes Tribune editorial Wednesday, Feb. 19, said 28 percent of Minnesota residents have no access to the Internet. And for all who do have access, we’ve learned about very good and very poor websites.

At one point, I visited websites of several cities our size, and some of them are a fright, not to mention confusing. Further, how many websites do you see that keep all their material up to date? With government using only its website for dissemination of issues, more and more we would get less and less information…soon a trickle. Finally, they skip it; it takes too much time to write.

The editorial is correct. Money isn’t everything. Yes, put some of my tax dollars into paying for governmental notices in the paper. That means the city and county are forced to periodically give out information they might just as soon keep to themselves. That protects some of our freedoms of being public citizens and seeing at least some transparency.

I’ll let my legislators know! — Sally Hausken, Detroit Lakes

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