What do I hope for the year of 2018?

Editor January 1, 2018 Comments Off on What do I hope for the year of 2018?

Did anybody notice that another year has passed?
Does the time seem to be flying by faster as we get older or is there still 60 minutes in an hour and 24 hours in a day?
OK, so time isn’t going faster, but it seems like it is. Doesn’t seem that long ago when everyone was making a big deal out of the fact we were coming up to a new century. Remember Y2K?
I try to look at each New Year and make some personal goals to do things better—I trust many of you do the same. I don’t really call them hard and fast New Year’s resolutions, but I do look at the year and hope to accomplish a few more things and end the year with a feeling that I did things better.
Looking around the parish, however, there are a few things I hope to see happen in 2018 that don’t really have to do with my personal goals.
–First and foremost, I would love to see the Saints make it to the Super Bowl again. OK, this is a sports thing and some of you could care less about sports, but there is no doubt the community rallies around the Saints when they are doing well. It puts people in a good mood on Monday morning after they win and it’s simply a fun thing to follow.
I remember when they made the Super Bowl and won it in 2010. Even my wife was interested in the game and joined me and friends for a Super Bowl party, which of course, they ended up winning. They have a chance to do something great again this season and I love pulling for them.
–The Slidell mayoral election is something I have been looking forward to for quite some time. We’ve got some very strong candidates who have said they plan to qualify and I’m very interested to see who wins, and then to see what that individual can do for our city that would provide a boost.
As much as anything I continue to want to see a real plan for Olde Towne, more than fixing sidewalks and putting up planters. Slidell’s Olde Towne has the potential to be every bit as good as nearby communities like Covington and Mandeville, where they have created a wonderful place to shop and hang out in their historic district. We need that in Slidell and I hope the new mayor has a solid plan to make something begin there.
–I, for one, want to see the sales tax renewal pass for the jail and Justice Center when that vote comes up again in March. While there has been a lot of talk about the high levels of taxation in St. Tammany Parish, I actually believe we are getting what we pay for. This parish is like no other—we have amenities most residents would never dream to have—but it comes at a price and that means we need to pay more in taxes if we want to maintain the quality of life here.
St. Tammany Parish earned its reputation in part because residents here were willing to pay extra in taxes for recreation, lights on their streets, drainage work, mosquito spraying and more. Government doesn’t automatically pay for every little bit of those extras. The sales tax renewal is not a huge amount of money and I personally believe the parish is doing a good job to operate efficiently. So I’m for the sales tax renewal and hope it passes. (That might get me a few letters!)
–This is probably an impossible request, but I would like to see politicians in Washington D.C. actually try to act like they are interested in the American people more than playing partisan politics. To see every Democrat in Congress vote against this tax bill, something that clearly will put more money in the pockets of millions of Americans is all you need to know that most of the congressional members are simply worried about their own agenda. It’s so sad.
And the way the national media has endlessly attacked Donald Trump ever since he won the election is really shameful. It is unprecedented in our nation’s history and shows how biased the national media is. Whether you agree with his politics or not the man should be allowed to govern without the endless personal attacks that have been without merit—try a year of the Russia investigation that has still not produced one piece of evidence he did anything wrong.
More than anything, however, I hope I can make 2018 a year when the local newspaper serves our communities better than ever. Our mission is to use this newspaper to help others—whether individuals in need or groups needing publicity for the good work they do.
If we can help, e-mail me with that information.
Happy New Year to all.

Kevin Chiri can be reached by e-mail at kevinchiri@gmail.com.

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