Editorial

Any time we get the ears and eyes of our state and federal leaders we want to make the most of it.

But, as we say, timing is everything, and we may have a missed opportunity Aug. 23, when officials from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety include International Falls in a tour of the state aimed at collecting feedback to assist law enforcement requirement efforts.

For this community, Friday, Aug. 23, is an important date based on the past attendance at Day 1 festivities of the International Falls Bass Championship.

The department officials have scheduled the visit from 6 to 7:30 p.m. at Falls High School.

Clearly, their aim is true: To ensure a level of trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve, something this community and its law officers take seriously. Proof of this is the large attendance at the recent and third annual National Night Out by representatives of the many law enforcement agencies in the community as well as by members of the public.

These state folks are taking to the road and stopping here as they host the listening sessions scheduled at nine other communities to explore the values and characteristics residents believe contribute to trust in police officers.

This is an opportunity to offer valuable recommendations about what people believe is most important in recruitment and selection for state law enforcement agencies.

Should area residents have ideas for what kind of attributes are needed by officers with the Minnesota State Patrol, Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and Alcohol and Gambling enforcement, we urge you to visit dps.mn.gov or send them to DPS at 445 Minnesota St., Suite 100, St. Paul, MN, 55101-5155.

These recommendations could end up playing a role here, as state officials say they may be used to develop a framework that other police departments around the state may follow.

We appreciate the effort and believe it's important. These officials are scheduled to be in Duluth earlier that day, and we understand the desire to make the trip an efficient use of time and money.

But given the choice, we're pretty sure many of us will choose the beloved IFBC activities on a warm August evening over the listening session at FHS.

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