To the editor:
This letter is in response to the July 27 Daily Mining Gazette letter to the editor titled "Maintain natural magnificence."
1. The Keweenaw County Economic Development Committee is appointed by the Keweenaw County board of commissioners. The EDC is charged with research and development of and for the county.
2. The mission statement of the Keweenaw County Economic Development Committee is:
"To stimulate economic growth by assisting existing businesses as well as new entrepreneurs in developing viable and sustainable businesses through grants, non-profits and other special programs while maintaining the uniqueness of Keweenaw County and preserving the quality of life for its citizens."
I was born and raised in Keweenaw County. My grandparents and parents were pioneers here. I live in the house where I was raised. I attended Eagle River Grade School and graduated from Calumet High School.
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Long ago, the timber industry flourished here and the people lived well. Later, the copper mines provided the same security. Keweenaw County needs those kinds of opportunities again so our common people, young, old, or in-between, don't have to leave the area they love in order to make a decent living for themselves.
I was the lead person on the Copper Harbor water park project. Countless hours of research including meetings, phone calls, emails and more were spent before (the committee) presented this proposal to the commissioners. I don't expect them (the commissioners) to approve every idea that is presented to them. What I did expect (and still do) is that they review the information provided to them by the EDC and base their decisions on the merits of the project - not on personal agendas.
I wish the person commending (Board Chair Ernest) Mooney had taken the time to become more informed and knowledgeable about the whole EDC process of what takes place before an idea is ever presented to the commissioners; perhaps the opinion may have not been so negative.
You have to live here year 'round to grasp what it's really like. A couple of weeks a year is not even a glimpse of life up here.
Nature and conservation are great, but at the end of the day, the bottom line is that Keweenaw County and its citizens need industry, jobs and money to survive.
SHARI BRUNEAU CHASE
Former EDC Committee Member