Thumbs up: To young donors. At least five area schools participated in the 13th annual Freezin’ for Food collection, which benefits the pantry at the DeKalb Salvation Army and serves DeKalb County families. WLBK-AM Morning Show host T.D. Ryan is camping out at the Target-Aldi shopping center in DeKalb until noon today to take donations for the drive. The schools used the drive as a lesson in giving back. “We’re always trying to teach students they belong to a larger community,” Malta Elementary School Principal Troy Miller said, “and to give back to realize some people are less fortunate than themselves.”
Thumbs up: To smart enforcement. People are often banned from the crime-plagued University Village apartment complex when they are convicted of committing a crime there. But such bans only work if they are enforced. In a little more than four hours Wednesday, 13 people who had been banned from the complex were arrested there and charged with criminal trespass, according to DeKalb police. “People keep going back and committing crimes,” DeKalb Police Lt. Bob Redel said. Police also checked for people with active warrants for their arrest.
Thumbs up: To youthful civic involvement. Sycamore Park District leaders were surprised to receive 65 suggestions for the city’s newest park through a children’s contest. Children were asked to pitch a name based on Sycamore’s history and justify their decision with a short essay. The entries include Peace Park, Wally Thurow Pumpkin Park, Orange Leaf Park, Sycamore Nature Park and Kishwaukee Park. We’re eager to hear about the winner, which park commissioners are expected to select Jan. 28.
Thumbs up: To the latest crop of local candidates. Running for public office at the county level can be time-consuming and expensive. Candidate petitions were due at 5 p.m. Monday, revealing that some unfamiliar names likely will appear on the March 18 ballot. We encourage all the candidates, whether or not they face a primary opponent, to publicize their thoughts on local issues, just as we encourage voters to learn about both major local issues and candidates.
Thumbs down: To state legislators for procrastinating on business tax incentives. The Senate and a House committee took up legislation this week offering tax breaks for Archer Daniels Midland Co., chemical distributor Univar and newly-merged OfficeMax and Office Depot. But this issue won’t be resolved this year, despite pleas from ADM leaders that they need a decision this month, because the House left after Tuesday’s pension vote. The state’s unemployment rate suggests workers would appreciate keeping major businesses in the state.