McPherson mayor Thomas Brown opened the city commission meeting this Monday with a statement expressing his sympathies for the families of those who lost children during the massacre at Newtown Elementary in Newtown, Conn.
“It's a very difficult thing to deal with,” Brown said.
Brown also expressed his appreciation with how President Obama has handled the situation, expressing gratitude for the prayer vigil that was conducted during the weekend, with the president noting the names of each victim.
Brown also said tighter restrictions on gun control would not be the answer to such tragedies, but the problem lies on decaying values within society.
“This is a bigger issue than whether or not you can get an assault rifle,” Brown said.
Brown pointed to an example of an incident in China, where 22 children were slain by a knife.
“What do we do then? Get rid of knives altogether?” Brown said.
Instead, Brown emphasized the importance of reestablishing values within American society, and the dangers the the country faces otherwise.
“We continue on the slippery slope of decadence,” Brown said.
In other business:
• Tammy Seely, city clerk, notified those present of the upcoming mayoral election in April. Those wishing to run can file between Jan. 2 and Jan. 22. If a primary is necessary, it will be on Feb. 26, with the general election taking place on April 2.
• Tim Maier, general manager with BPU, expressed his desire to notify the public about winter water consumption, and the effect it can have on water supply and bills. Mayor Brown said if the drought continues, then similar policies on water control seen last year would be reimplemented.
• Doug Whitacre, public works director, wished to notify the public that construction on the Barnstormer's West Field addition would begin today, and that the section of Maxwell Street in McPherson between Avenue A and Bluestone will be closed off for project purposes. Drivers can detour through nearby Turkey Creek Drive.
• Mayor Brown notified the public an e-mail was sent to the Freedom From Religion foundation after the city commission meeting last week. No new information is available otherwise.