CITY BEAT: AREA RESIDENTS THANKING AND SHOWING SUPPORT FOR DECATUR POLICE OFFICERS
• Dave Wilhour is one of a growing number of area residents who are thanking and showing support for Decatur Police Officers.
Following our publication in last week’s Tribune of Councilman David Horn’s “letter to the editor” thanking officers of the Decatur Police Department, Wilhour sent me this photo and the following message: “We have this sign in our yard! Plus every time I see a police officer (gas station, Kroger etc.) I always say ‘thanks for what you do everyday’! My big concern is being able to fill openings with the new state law that was passed!” Thanks for sharing Dave. We need to thank and support the officers of the Decatur Police Department and all our law enforcement agencies who are dedicated to keeping us safe.
• SO SORRY to learn of the death of Ray Batman last week. (Obituary on page 20 of this week’s print Decatur Tribune.) Ray spent so much of his life in service to others. He was the first staff member of the local Dove organization and later served as executive director of Dove for 14 years until his retirement. It seems like only yesterday that we had one of our countless conversations about the needs of our community in our building’s elevator, on the street — or in my office. We have lost so many good people the past few years. My condolences to his wife, Missy, and his family members.
• GOOD NEWS — On Friday, Adrienne Ranck of the Macon County Health Department reported in the week that passed since the last report there were 18 new COVID-19 cases reported in Macon County, bringing the total number of COVID-19 cases to 11.038 since the start of the pandemic. There are 4 COVID-19 patients still in the hospital and 52 in Home Isolation. “Please note that, while there were 18 newly-reported cases, one previously-reported case was determined to be from out of county and was transferred appropriately,” she wrote. Sadly, 207 Macon County residents have died from the effects of COVID-19 since the pandemic started and there have been 11,038 confirmed cases during that time. While the decreasing number of COVID-19 infections is good news it is probably bad news in getting the nearly two-thirds of Macon County residents who have not been vaccinated to do so. A lot of people in our community believe the danger is over and there is not any need to be vaccinated. I hope and pray they are right. If they are not right Macon County’s vaccination rate serves as a prime target for the Delta variant which is already spreading in areas and states with low vaccination rates.
• ONE of the items the city council was expected to approve at last night’s (Tuesday) meeting was a resolution authorizing alternative uses of some 4400 square feet in the upper level of the Decatur Public Library which is controlled by the city and not part of the library’s lease. It is currently being used by the Friends of the Library to store and sort books, but the city wants to use two-thirds of the space for the planned employee clinic, with the remaining one-third to house the offices of the Community Investment Corporation of Decatur (CICD). According to information from City Manager Scot Wrighton, “The CICD has been without a home since they moved out of the former incubator on Imboden Avenue (former Borg Warner building)… “The CICD is being gradually reshaped to serve as the city’s small business assistance and new business start-up agency. They will also host SCORE.” It’s probably because of the pandemic and the move out of their old location but I had almost forgotten the CICD existed until it became part of the proposed move to the library space. However, CICD has been around for many years and has played an impressive role in the local environment. As its mission statement indicates: “The Community Investment Corpora-tion of Decatur focuses on community improvement and capacity building, and is a not-for-profit lender that provides financing to entrepreneurs and small businesses to develop and grow in the Decatur area.” It has an impressive staff and board of directors and, perhaps, when it moves to its new downtown location (if council approved the library space Tuesday evening) it will have a higher profile.
• ACCORDING to a recently conducted poll by Harvard Univer-sity’s Center for American Political Studies more people have a favorable view of the police and law enforcement agencies than the Black Lives Matter movement. “Sixty-nine percent have either a very favorable view or a favorable view of the police and the The Black Lives Matter movement garnered favorability was 45%, with 39% saying they had an unfavorable or very unfavorable view. I wonder if a lot of Americans are puzzled by those numbers since they are opposite of what many media outlets would lead you to believe with their coverage of the news?
• I WONDER if some people who won’t get vaccinated against COVID-19 believe to do so would show a lack of faith in God to protect them from the virus? If so, do they ever stop to think that the record-speed discovery of the vaccine was God’s way of offering them protection? Just wondering…
• I JOIN Brian Byers on WSOY’s Byers & Co. every Thursday morning at 7:00.