News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Opinion

August 7, 2013

EDITORIAL: Partnership of progress

Collectively, community can make itself better

TERRE HAUTE — It sure is fun and cathartic to rail about government and its excesses. Lots of people do it. We join in the chorus ourselves from time to time.

But fairness requires us to stand back and recognize that government has productive and positive functions. It can and does accomplish things on behalf of the public more often than most people are willing to acknowledge.

Case in point — the major and unprecedented upgrade currently under way to Terre Haute’s wastewater treatment plant. The old plant and system were long ignored and improvements delayed. There never seemed to be enough money. And no politician wants his or her name attached to a project that may raise taxes or sewer rates.

But time takes its toll on infrastructure such as sewer systems. Technology advances. And communities expect environmentally sensitive facilities, such as wastewater plants, to change with the times and also recognize the responsibility to do better jobs of protecting natural resources.

The mammoth project now under way, with a massive price tag of $120 million, is being completed in phases. When it’s done, Terre Haute will have a modern wastewater system that will better serve the needs of its people and better support current and future businesses. What’s more, it’s designed to eliminate what remains of the city’s infamous treatment plant odor that’s offended the olfactory senses of residents, visitors and passersby on Interstate 70 for decades.

Yes, the cost of the project is already being felt with higher sewer rates. Progress is not free. And while many may have the occasional urge to complain about the rates and high costs of such a project, few would deny that these improvements are necessary and long overdue.

Mayor Duke Bennett and his administration have taken on the huge task of advancing what the mayor calls “the largest public works project in the history of the city.” We commend them for that.

When the project is finished and the local wastewater system is functioning, it will exist largely in the background (or perhaps we should say underground) of city services. It should remind us that we rely on government to take on such projects, but that the government is not just some shadowy entity down at City Hall. The government is us.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Palestinians and Israeli Soldiers Clash Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Video Shows Smiling American Bomber in Syria 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma Raw: Violent Clashes Between Libyan Militias Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Sirens After Explosions in Israel Fox Dons 'Bondage Strap' Skirt at Comic-Con Raw: Tanks Patrol Gaza Streets During Ceasefire Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground
NDN Video
Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth Bradley Cooper Explains His Voice in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity