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Pioneer Editorial: Cheers and Jeers

Illegal dumping is a disgrace

Late last week, officials offered a public plea in helping solve illegal dumping along Beltrami County's roadways.

The problem is apparently recurring and goes beyond the usual garbage littered in ditches, which is an eyesore.

Instead, there have been numerous reports, including two last week, of adult diapers, catheters and other care products discarded in ditches north and west of Bemidji.

The dumping goes beyond laziness and unsightliness.

The used products, which at times has contained syringes, poses a safety issue to people and animals who might be using the roadside areas for recreation. And the discarded, dirty items are classified as hazardous materials, requiring specialized cleanup at a cost to taxpayers.

The person or parties responsible should be prosecuted, and county officials need help in carrying through in that effort.

The behavior is more than juvenile and irresponsible. It is illegal, disgraceful, dangerous and shows lack of common decency.


The show goes on

This week the Bemidji Jaycees' 35th annual Home, Sport & Travel Show kicks off with a full slate of vendors.

Earlier this year, controversy popped up over whether a local vendor - Stittsworth Meats - would participate. At issue was implementation of the Sanford Center's policy requiring food and beverage businesses to share a percentage of gross profits.

The controversy left the Jaycees in a peculiar situation of putting on its show in the larger venue and standing up for a long-standing member.

As it stands, Stittsworth Meats is planning to participate in the show, and encourage patrons to visit one of its stores.

While some people have vowed to protest by boycotting the show or the Sanford Center altogether, such a move hurts the other vendors and the Jaycees organization. The show will go on, and offer a wider selection of vendors and products than ever. Plus, there are several interesting and helpful presentations for the public.