Detailng the issues

by Robert Shank

Well, the big news lately is the hospital. I have done my best to stay out of this fight. It seems everyone has an opinion, some say we need it at any cost, while others say close it.

I have never been one to keep my opinion to myself, so here goes. I am a small business owner. Overhead, and other expenditures, versus income must always be considered. Yes, some times are tougher than others, but that's life in Cimarron County. If my business finances were as bad as those of the hospital I would have been forced to close long ago. I don't have the luxury to borrow money from the bank on future income estimates to pay current bills. I too want a hospital, but at what point do we say, “Enough is enough?” Let's face it, we have a dying economy here.

Hey, I've got it maybe the well intentioned do-gooders can vote in another tax-increase, to throw even more money at the hospital. We don't need more taxes. We can't just throw money at the problem and say, “Fix it yourself.” What we need is a business leader to run the hospital, someone who needs a challenge, not someone just looking for a big payday.

As a newcomer to Cimarron County, being from the outside, I must admit that I DON'T GET IT. Someone please explain to me why on Feb. 24, 2004, out of 2,151 registered voters only 511 voted to keep the two percent tax. That 511 defeated the staggering 109 who voted against it. So when it comes to taxes I guess only 620 people care or have an opinion.

I wonder out of that 511, how many take their money elsewhere to shop?

I hear it all the time, taxes are too high so I'm going to Texas to shop. Well, guess what, you're the reason taxes are too high, by either voting to raise them, or not voting at all, it's the same result.

People say well I go to Texas to buy food because it's much cheaper, plus, no tax. OK, I get it now; we need to save our hospital so I'll vote to raise taxes on the travelers and the truckers while I spend all my money in Texas. Oh what compassion, what a sense of duty. It's time to wake up, the problem is much bigger than the hospital. It's not too late; let's turn this economy around while we still can. How? Keeping our money here. How many times does the Wal-Mart or United manager say “Thank you.” for spending your money in Texas? They don't care about a few upset Okies crossing the border in protest of our taxes; they just hold that hand out.

I can remember when I started my business in Boise City, I told my dad, (who lives in Nashville, Tenn.), that I was unable to purchase most of my supplies here, but the ones I can get are too high-priced. He said, “That's the price of small town living.” I see now what he was saying, we are “All” dependant on each other in this county, for finances, for spiritual well-being and community pride.

Come on folks, if we really want to keep the hospital and have a place to raise our families, we need to support Cimarron County businesses, not the Texans. I'm convinced this is the greatest county in the United States in which to raise a family. But, for how much longer? Let's earnestly pray for our county leaders, our hospital board members, our hospital and nursing home staff, and for community healing.

I love this place. I've said before, this is Mayberry. But we need a renewed vision, a new spring in our step, a new and greater love for one another. Let's thank Almighty God for Cimarron County.


Boise City News
P.O. Box 278
105 W. Main Street
Boise City, Oklahoma 73933-0278
Phone: 580 544-2222
Fax: 580 544-3281
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