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Continued: Readers Write: (Nov. 1): City governance, election endorsements, ranked-choice voting, online habits, orchestra

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  • Last update: October 31, 2013 - 6:56 PM

The ranked-choice voting system allows each of us to vote for those we truly prefer without fear of “wasting” our votes or having our two preferred candidates split the vote, allowing a lesser candidate to win. Take advantage of these benefits by ranking your votes in order of preference.

ANDREW FLAMM, St. Paul

 

ONLINE HABITS

Students’ cellphones aren’t just for frivolity

In response to the Oct. 30 letter that talked about limiting high school students’ screen time and how students should leave their phones at home, I disagree. I am a high school student myself. At my school and others, students are provided iPads by the school for educational purposes. If iPads are being used for education, why would it make sense to not allow students to bring their phones to school? Many students I know have iPhones and use them in school to be productive, not just to text. I think that phones and tablets are valuable tools and should be used more, not less, for educational purposes

SIMON RONALD, Minneapolis

 

MINNESOTA ORCHESTRA

The danger of drawing down the endowment

The demise of the New York City Opera should be a lesson for us about governance of nonprofits and instruct us on governance of the Minnesota Orchestra. The venerable New York institution went bankrupt because its directors raided the endowment to pay for the salaries and other ongoing costs. As the New York Times reported, one expert on fiduciary duties for nonprofit directors said “endowments should never be invaded.” Yet that is precisely what would happen under the last proposal made by the orchestra’s musicians. That would ultimately send the orchestra down the same path as the New York City Opera and some other nonprofits.

It is the fiduciary duty of the directors to preserve the institution for the future. The most recent proposal from the orchestra, which is at least as favorable as the contracts recently agreed to in Atlanta, Indianapolis and by the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, would not require the significant endowment draws the musicians’ proposal would require.

KEN CUTLER, Edina

 

The writer is a member of the Minnesota Orchestra board.

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