City tour and celebrating our veterans, education week

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

October is probably my favorite month of the year, and this October has been beautiful. We were all worried that the summer drought would mean less color on the tress, but I thought the trees were as pretty as ever.

October has also been a very busy month. We started with many activities to celebrate and support Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We closed the month with the Pink Moon Run/Walk on Oct. 28 to support breast cancer research.

On Oct. 17 and 18 we had the Mayor's Tour. On those days, Aldermen Joe Bob Baker, Wanda Young, Mark Dambach and David Hitt, David Bloom of the Cash Book Journal, and Cape Girardeau County Commissioners Clint Tracy and Paul Koeper joined me and city administrator Jim Roach as we visited our city departments.

These annual visits give us an opportunity to see new equipment, how it is being used, and any changes that have been made in the departments. We also have an opportunity to learn about the routine duties of each department. However, along with their routine duties, our employees are often called upon to help other departments when we have large projects to be completed or when there is an emergency.

Rather than going to the Water Distribution Department, we elected to visit the site of the Forest Acres Water Line Rehabilitation Project. That is where the employees from the Water Plant, Street and Water Distribution Departments were all working.

While we were there we even ran into the supervisor of the Fleet Maintenance Department doing an emergency repair job. This kind of cooperation is the norm with our city employees.

We visited all 13 departments in the city, and I don't have the space to write about each one. However, everyone on the tour was impressed with the efficiency and professional operation of each department. I especially appreciate the willingness of each department head to take us on the tour and share information about his or her department.

November is also a busy month as we prepare to honor our veterans and celebrate American Education Week.

Jackson will be having a parade honoring our veterans on Monday at 4 p.m., followed by a church service at New McKendree Methodist Church. However, to me the event that is most touching and appropriately honors the veterans is the Veterans Day assembly by the young people in the music department at Jackson Senior High School. It will be even more special this year as there will be a tribute to Maj. Garrett Knowlan, who died in an Air Force training exercise. This event will be on Monday at 9 a.m.

Jackson is also justifiably proud of its excellent school system, so we will have events in the schools during the week of Nov. 11-17 to celebrate American Education Week.

Today is Election Day. It is a right and your duty as a citizen to cast your vote. If you haven't already done so, go vote!

Barbara Lohr is the mayor of Jackson.

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