Letters Rounds congratulates Vermillion's efforts

To the editor:

I am writing to congratulate the city of Vermillion for winning first place in the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Region 8, Clean Water Act Recognition Award in the category for medium-sized wastewater treatment plants. To win this award, a city must have outstanding wastewater operators who are dedicated professionals, and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources commends all city personnel who are involved in maintaining Vermillion's wastewater system.

However, winning an award such as this goes beyond system operations and takes a team effort. This team, which is led by the mayor and city council, must support operations and includes other city employees and all the residents and users of the wastewater system who must pay the bills. It is obvious Vermillion has put the whole team together.

The entire city should be very proud of winning this award that recognizes your commitment to maintain compliance to protect the environment. Good luck at the national competition.


Gov. M. Michael Rounds


Daschle addresses medicare inequity

To the editor:

As a physician assistant who has spent many years providing rural healthcare, I am very enthusiastic about Sen. Daschle's legislation he recently passed that addresses a major inequity in rural Medicare service. Healthcare providers in rural communities get less money from Medicare for the same procedure performed in urban areas.

Daschle's amendment to the prescription drug bill ensures that rural communities receive equal Medicare payments to their urban counterparts. This is a matter of adequate care and easy emergency access.

Daschle acknowledges that rural hospitals throughout South Dakota are in serious need of updating equipment, because a lack of Medicare reimbursement has allowed these hospitals to deteriorate. He pushed through a provision to help rural hospitals get badly needed funding to repair and update their facilities, providing up to $50,000 in federal grants.

This is so important considering rural hospitals have a difficult time raising capital or borrowing funds for these kinds of crucial improvements.

I believe I speak for a majority of rural health care providers who appreciate Daschle's efforts for improved and continued accessibility to health care in rural communities of South Dakota and the region.

Thank you,

Marilyn Harms


Family thankful for outpouring of support

To the editor:

Words can not express how we feel about the outpouring of support shown to us at the time of Dan's accident, hospitalization and since returning home. Dan's progress has been truly amazing and miraculous. He would not have gotten to this point without the excellent medical care he received at the scene, during his hospital stays at Mercy Medical Center in Sioux City and Sioux Valley Hospital in Sioux Falls and without his on-going therapy at the North Center in Sioux Falls.

Dan also would not have gotten this far had it not been for all of the support he received from you!

We want to thank the ambulance crew, law enforcement, Vermillion School Board, Dr. Robert Mayer, Mr. Curt Cameron, Vermillion teachers and guidance counselors, Vermillion High School Student Council, Vermillion Booster Club, Theta Omega of ESA, Legion baseball team, students, former students, parents, friends and other members of the community.

You can not possibly imagine how much your support, thoughts and prayers have meant to us. Thank you for the visits, phone calls, cards, e-mails, flowers, plants, balloons, food and monetary donations.

Thank you to all who attended the church benefit at St. Teresa's Catholic Church in Beresford and the golf benefit and auction at the Beresford Country Club.

Also, thanks to all of the businesses who donated items for the auction. All of these things are wonderful acts of kindness and have been greatly appreciated by our family.

We truly believe that without family, friends and faith, we could not get through this challenging time. We will continue to persevere and we will never, never, never give up!

Peace and God Bless,

Dan, Deb, Hunter and Alana Bergland


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