TOLEDO CHRONICLE - In 2010, the Tama County Board of Supervisors voted 2-0 with 2nd District Supervisor Kendall Jordan absent, to eliminate the publication of county legal notices in the county seat newspaper, The Toledo Chronicle. Two newspapers are in the the 2nd District - The Northern Sun Print, serving Gladbrook-Garwin and Lincoln, and The Chronicle. In neither were county legal notices published in the year 2010.
Last week, supervisors this time voted 3-0 to only publish the county legal notices in The Tama News-Herald and The Traer Star Clipper for the year 2011. (All Tama County newspapers- The Chronicle, News-Herald, Star-Clipper, Northern-Sun Print and Dysart Reporter are under one ownership.)
According to a study commissioned by the Iowa Newspaper Association (Newton Marketing and Research, December, 2009) 71.2 percent of Iowans believe state and local government should be required to publish public notices in newspapers.
In addition, 87.4 percent of Iowans read their local newspaper. The study also found public notices in Iowa are better read than national sports news.
It would be best in the interest of the those Tama County citizens in the 2nd District to be actively informed of their county government dealings.
Even with the good intention of saving the taxpayers money, the board of supervisors needs to reconsider this decision. They should be making efforts to make government activities more accessible a primary concern not restricting access to the business of the people.
A necessary step in that direction would be to publish county legal notices in all newspapers in Tama County, not just a token allowance to meet the minimum requirements of the law.