Published in the Iola Register on Feb. 22, 2013.

Letter to the Editor 2-22-13

Cloud county voters will have an opportunity in next Tuesday's election to step up from a facility that has served the community well over the years but is now far behind in technology as well as the efficient use of space and energy. Those who have studied and worked with this dilemma for years are offering a plan and a facility which can provide the highest quality health care far into the future.
They have formulated a plan utilizing prudent financial management, grants, and a sales tax increase. Every community is paying for something with sales taxes. A new hospital is a worthy investment. This particular incremental increase results in 75 cents for each $100 purchase. For a person making the median Cloud County income of $32,000 per year and making normal monthly purchases, this translates to a $150 a year contribution for individuals. Because it is a sales tax it is reasonable to project that 20 percent of these monies would be paid by travelers through our county as well as shoppers from surrounding counties.
In the past few years we have benefited from the advantages of having a young, progressive, and committed medical staff supported by all of the professional and ancillary personnel required to deliver health care. It would only be a realistic appraisal to state that, if the community rejects this sales tax increase and the modern hospital it represents, we would be in jeopardy of losing those medical providers. If they leave and the only thing we have to offer is the current Cloud County Health Center, replacing them would be virtually impossible.
Do not listen to those who only criticize and strive to dismantle the good things of this community. Do not cast a vote of "No Confidence" in the future of Cloud County. Do vote "Yes" to care for all our citizens from the oldest to those yet to be born.
A $150 per year tax is actually $12.50 per month spread out over every purchase we make that month. We are more than willing to invest $12.50 in you, our neighbors and friends. Vote YES next Tuesday.
Steven and Krista Bryant