Local News

Grande’s ramblings: Bond vote, Blue Jay Basketball, Kindred Basketball (Breaking News)

Article by Ian Grande

Blue Jays are hoping to make some noise at Region 8 Tournament: The Stanley Boys Basketball team hasn’t been to the State Tournament in 79 years. There is hope that the talented Blue Jays can end the drought this season. The Blue Jays played excellent in the District 16 Tournament, which culminated with a thrilling victory over the Kenmare Honkers in the championship game.

They Blue Jays open with the Watford City Wolves in the first round tomorrow (weather permitting). We will keep you informed if there are any changes to the schedule going forward.

*Here is a full preview of the Regional Tournament that tips off tomorrow (Weather Permitting): North Dakota Class B Boys Basketball Region 8 Tournament Preview

How about those Kindred Vikings? The Kindred Vikings claimed their first North Dakota Class B Basketball Championship on Saturday.

The Viking’s 1-3-1 press was swarming all tournament. Abi Duchscherer was the real deal, the 7th grader played excellent in all three games. The decision to bring up a 7th grader to a senior heavy team had to raise some eyebrows. Coach Perry Piatz is pretty glad he didn’t listen to the naysayers or Kindred likely wouldn’t have that first title.

*Breaking News* Coach Piatz has announced his retirement from coaching basketball, the Kindred coaching position will garner plenty of interest.

Legislative updates: I urge you to check out the weekly legislative updates that we are posting on our website. These are an excellent way to keep informed about the important issues being debated in Bismarck.

Stanley School bond vote is tomorrow (Tuesday), here are some thoughts:

Information is now available, don’t run away from it: I believe local media outlets (including this one) and the school board have a duty to the community to convey accurate information in effort to keep everyone informed on what is going on. Obviously, some of the onus falls on the members of the community as well to not run away from the information.

There have been five (5) public meetings (two of which were live-streamed on this website) as well as multiple articles published on multiple media platforms. Yet there are still members of the community that claim they haven’t received any information on the proposed building project.

I believe there is still plenty of room for improvement moving forward and information from past years is still virtually impossible to find online, but I think we are certainly trending in the right direction in regards to getting information to the public.

Which way is the wind blowing on the school bond vote? This is a tough vote to forecast. Influential members of the community have come out publicly on both sides of the debate, while others have kept their cards closer to their vest.

I wouldn’t be surprised at all if the “Yes” vote received over 50%, I would however be surprised if the “Yes” side gets over the 60% threshold that is needed to pass.

Weather could be a factor tomorrow with rural voters facing some potentially dicey road conditions due to the blizzard today. My gut tells me this would likely impact the “No” voter turnout more than it would impact the “Yes” voter turnout.

Keep the discussion civil, refrain from hyperbole: There is a small contingent of people out there that would vote Yes for this building project regardless of price, just as there is a small contingent that will never vote for school improvements for any reason.

The above contingents have been the most vocal throughout the debate process. This can make it difficult for those seeking information, mainly because neither contingent seems to be overly reliant on facts to make their case.

The frustrating part for those trying to take an objective look at this bond referendum is that both sides seems to be completely oblivious to the concerns that the other side of the debate is bringing up.

Both sides of the debate feel like there is a lot to lose if the debate doesn’t go their way. I have observed many debates regarding the school bond vote, some have been rooted around facts and legitimate concerns. Unfortunately, many debates have seen facts replaced with hyperbole.

Some members pushing for the “Yes” vote have generously overstated the plight that the school faces, while some members pushing for a “No” vote are just as guilty of fear mongering to further their position.

Hyperbole doesn’t help your case, it just erodes your credibility.

Legitimate concerns have been raised by both sides: The “Yes” side has brought up some legitimate issues that the school faces, some of these will need to be addressed regardless of how the vote falls.

The “No” side has also brought up some legitimate concerns about the timing of the build and the financial strain that it will put the district under.

My gut tells me that a majority of voters are a bit apprehensive about the price tag/scope of the project but also recognize that the status quo is not going to be the answer for much longer, this makes for a difficult decision.

It is important to remember that many bond referendums don’t pass on their first shot, many require some tweaking (sometimes significant tweaking) before they can secure enough votes to pass. This is just part of the democratic process.


*Ian Grande is the Editor of the Stanley Gazette. If you have any comments or concerns please email StanleyGazette@gmail.com

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  • Feel free to email Ian with any comments or concerns (StanleyGazette@gmail.com)
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  1. ‘… many require some tweaking (sometimes significant tweaking) …” … I think we know how much tweaking this proposal will require!

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