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Hits and misses

10:52 PM, May 26, 2013  |  Comments
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A look at some of the good - and not-so-good - news of the past week:

Hit: Speed kills, and the Sheboygan Police Department is seeking citizen help to curb the dangerous driving practice.

They are instituting the Pace Car program that basically asks drivers to take a pledge to obey speed limits, avoid distractions and refrain from aggressive driving. Drivers would, in essence, set an example for others. The reward is knowing you are doing the right thing, and a sticker or magnet from police indicating as much.

If enough people take the pledge in problem areas, police figure, the concerted effort will alleviate the speeding and other problem behavior. The idea is to have the safe drivers influence unsafe driving in part by acting as a "moving speed bump" with a driver going down the road at the posted speed limit sign.

Hopefully, the "influence" will be strong enough to alter behaviors that are, quite frankly, often ingrained in bad drivers.

This is, however, a worthy effort to curb a problem that many people have expressed concern about in Sheboygan. If enough people are committed to doing the right thing - slowing down and paying attention - it is bound to change things for the better.

Miss: The vast majority of health care workers in Wisconsin realize they should get an annual flu shot and do so without hesitation. There are some, however, who need the push of law to do the right thing.

That's why a bill introduced last week by Rep. Jeremy Thiesfeldt, R-Fond du Lac, is a bad idea. The bill pending in the Legislature would bar employers, including hospitals, nursing homes and other health care agencies, from mandating flu shots for their workers.

Several hospital workers and health care contractors in his district complained they were fired after refusing to be vaccinated, Thiesfeldt said.

The bill would require employers to provide information about the risks and benefits of vaccination and allow employees reasonable time to consider it. They could not demote, suspend, discharge or discriminate against employees who refuse.

Freedom of choice is, in most cases, desirable. But not in this case. Health care workers, who work with those most susceptible to the flu, should be vaccinated against it. The science is not perfect, but vaccines have been proven effective in either preventing flu or lessening its impact. Employers have the right to make sure that workers are doing everything possible to prevent illness. Vaccination is, in the case of flu, the most reasonable assurance.

Hit: The Joint Finance Committee's vote on Thursday evening to slash the University of Wisconsin System budget was inevitable. The public outcry to do so has been growing after it was learned UW was raising tuition each year while sitting on a $650 million surplus.

The committee voted to eliminate a proposed spending increase of $181 million for the UW System in Gov. Scott Walker's proposed budget, and also cuts a further $2.5 million. It also freezes tuition costs for two years.

The panel made the right decision, given the public mood.

Some on the committee, including Sen. Alberta Darling, have called for UW System President Kevin Reilly to be fired. The surplus flap does not, to borrow a federal phrase, rise to the level of an impeachable offense. Reilly and other board members should keep a much closer eye on UW finances, however.

What's your take on the Packers Family Night change?

Retrieving results.
Watching practice is fine.(Your vote)
15%
574 votes
I'd rather watch a scrimmage.(Your vote)
23%
856 votes
I don't want to pay to watch practice.(Your vote)
27%
1015 votes
It doesn't matter to me.(Your vote)
34%
1271 votes

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