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Welcome 2013: A resolution

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'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Friday, Dec. 28, 2012, 8:58 p.m.

Be it resolved," as government officials sometimes are wont to say, that in the new year of 2013, those very elected leaders in Armstrong County will be more enterprising than they have been in recent years.

Part of that resolution will be the stipulation that if those leaders - in elected posts for boroughs, townships, county and school districts - do not show some initiative and true leadership qualities, the voters will turn them out of office. It is a municipal election year.

It is imperative that our local leaders have good communication skills, and that is more than a phrase to stick on the end of a resume.

Good leaders will manifest those skills in at least two ways:

They will promote cooperation on the panels on which they sit, working with even the most cantankerous of colleagues to advance the cause of taxpayers. They will also take the initiative to explain to the public - admittedly a less-than-enthusiastic group at times - what their government panels are doing to reduce costs and enhance services and to enlist their support.

Generally local leaders attend their regularly scheduled meetings and expect the majority of dialogue with citizens to happen there. We would urge them to call another forum at which real creative brainstorming can occur. Leaders who say that will never happen are not the kind that governing demands today. Oh, and calling a few press conferences wouldn't hurt either.

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