The Madisonian News from March 15th Edition

Need total transparency in school district

Ennis School District voters

I am running for Ennis School Board Trustee because I feel the district needs a change in leadership.

The students need to receive the best education possible. The school board trustees will have to work together and be accountable for tax dollars spent. There needs to be total transparency on how the school district tax money is being spent.

William R. Clark


Wagner responds to Shaw, raises more questions Obama’s birth certificate

Dear Editor,

There is no greater crisis upon our nation and state than the indifference and lackadaisical attitude towards public duty and individual responsibility.

On Jan. 21 I wrote Secretary of State Linda McCulloch and informed her of her duty to “certify” under the law the name of Barack Obama to be placed upon the Montana State Ballot according to MCA 13-25-101(5): “The Secretary of State shall certify to the election administrator the names of the candidates for President and Vice President.” MCA 13-12-202(4) goes on to say that, “The ballots must contain the name of each candidate whose nomination is certified under law for an office.” Article II, Sec. 1, of the U.S. Constitution states that no person except that is natural born and attained the age of 35 shall be qualified to serve as President…

To certify means to declare something to be true, or in this case, to guarantee that a candidate has met the qualifications of law to be on the ballot. The people of Montana deserve to have the Secretary of State hold those seeking public office on the Montana ballot accountable to the law, thus preserving the purity of the election process. The Secretary of State responded by having her legal attorney respond with great evasive legalese that simply boils down to what I would view as official neglecting to act. I would presume that the subject is just too hot to handle for some.

This issue was brought forth by constituents in this district and elsewhere – many active duty military and some retired. There is much at stake here that some evidently do not appreciate. The rule of law is black and white, not colored. Equal treatment under the law is the cornerstone of civil governance and must be preserved.

Recently, an investigative unit of the Maracaposa County Sheriffs’ Department in Arizona, released findings that concluded the Presidential birth certificate provided and released by the White House is a forgery. This is serious stuff. Forgery is a crime. Forgery for the purpose to deceive the people of the U.S. (Montana included) in an election to the highest seat of government is a real danger, and we as responsible citizens must take this threat seriously – it is not an option.

Last week Mr. Shaw took a shotgun, slanderous approach to issues of which I have worked hard for the people of HD 71, (i.e. wolves, Sheridan Sewer District, Cowboy Hall of Fame, etc.) I am not sure whether Ray Shaw’s comments in last week’s paper are simply a result of ignorance or his self-serving interests, but his calloused indifference to the rule of law is as dangerous to the state and House District 71 as this President is to the Union. Our sons and daughters of the armed forces deserve a representative that will defend the law and the principles of which they also serve. They also deserve to know that their Commander-in-Chief is qualified to serve in accordance with that same oath.

Rep. Bob Wagner

House District 71


Madison River citizens committee, who they pick will make a difference

Dear Editor,

During the process of “river management,” the FWP has informed the public that a “critical step” of this plan will be the Madison River Citizens Advisory Committee (MCAC). FWP has posted applications and information on their website The due date for these applications is March 16.

So far, throughout this “process” including all the scoping meetings, FWP has driven home the point that the MCAC will be an “important consensus driven part” of a management plan. There are so many concerns with the proceedings of this management plan and several important ones are with the consensus driven part of this “process.”

  1. On the Madison River CAC application there are a number of questions. One should assume these questions are used to find the best candidates for a consensus driven group of citizens to fill the seats on the committee. Question 8 asks, “What are your initial ideas for managing recreation on the Madison River?” You could look at these answers and find a consensus driven group of citizens. In this day and age of people becoming more aware of how these “processes” often times work, what better way for the Region 3 supervisor to weed through and then the director of FWP to choose a group of like-minded people to form a consensus driven committee! For this reason it would be good form for FWP to make the chosen applications of public record.
  2. Let’s say an item is voted on by the MCAC and there is no consensus on the issue. At this time a moderator chosen by FWP tries to influence people to come to a consensus and if they don’t, a decision is made by the majority and the minority attaches their concerns and they move on. Consensus driven?
  3. After all is said and done and maybe a year later, eight or more meetings, good ideas/bad ideas, hours away from family and our businesses, the MCAC has a plan presented to FWP which could be drafted as is, partially or not at all. New Rule VIII (ARM 12.11.435) Restricting or rationing river use: (1) “The commission shall make the final decision on whether or not to restrict or ration river use and the adoption of rules for doing so.”

FWP states in their charter for MCAC applicants that the MCAC serves in an “advisory capacity” and “there is no guarantee” that the FWP will “follow” MCAC’s recommendations. We encourage you to research this process for yourselves and consider the implications of a restrictive management plan that could threaten the survival of our remaining businesses in the area.

Todd France, owner Blast and Cast Outfitters, Inc.

John Roberts, owner Titan Service


Ideas for moving forward in Ennis School District, Coffman announces candidacy

Dear Editor,

I am writing this letter to publicly announce my candidacy for the position of trustee on the Ennis School Board.

Many may find it hard to believe that someone would voluntarily sign up to run for this position, but given the current situation the school is in, I feel strongly that now is the time for me to step up and try to do what I can to help our school, as well as our community, to move forward.

I know there are past issues that must be dealt with, and I feel that by dealing with them openly and using the pertinent facts, not half truths and emotion, that we can put the past in the past and begin to move forward. I believe the time is now to once again put the focus on the kids and their educations.

I believe there are several keys to accomplishing this. First, I believe there needs to be better communication between the school board and the community. This isn’t only the responsibility of the board, but the community as well. Second, I believe the hiring of a new superintendent will be very important in moving forward. I urge all voters to fill out the school’s online survey, attend meetings and be as involved as possible in this upcoming hiring.

Lastly, but to me most important, is that as we move forward, we must do so with a respect for one another as people and neighbors. The name calling and threatening nature of past dialogue needs to stop if there is to be any hope in moving forward. I feel that by treating each other with respect, basing our discussions on facts and leaving our emotions at the door, that solutions to issues in the past and those sure to come up in the future can be found.

We have a new building, with some issues as to how it got there. Let’s not forget that in that new building are a group of top quality teachers, doing their best, every day, to see that our children get the best education possible. That is where our main focus should be, and if elected, I will do my sincere best to help guide the school in that direction.

With honesty, integrity and accountability, I look forward to finding solutions, solving problems and moving forward. I would appreciate your vote.

Thank you for your consideration.

Chad Coffman


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