A Winters Express op-ed column
By Charley Wallace
My grandson Lukas dropped by last weekend. We don’t see him as often as we would like, and I was thrilled to pick him up at the airport, along with his parents. He said he didn’t mind the flight from Boise and seemed glad to see me. Lukas will be five in June and just might be the smartest, and cutest, five year old I’ve ever met. My other grandson Brett, 11, isn’t cute anymore, just handsome. Spoken like a proud grandfather.
We had some time to kill, so I showed my ex-temporary tenant, Robert, the new homes being built on the northwest side of town. I walk through parts of the new subdivisions when we walk the dogs, but I haven’t been all the way to the edge of our city limits in awhile.
There are a lot of homes already occupied and more being built and sold. I’m not sure of the total number of homes that have been approved, but I think it somewhere around 650. They have been working on that housing area for decades and they don’t look like they will fill up their allotment anytime soon.
It surprised me to see so many young families moving in. I expected to see older folks who could afford to move to Winters, but people were out, working on their yards and walking their dogs. When I’ve stopped to talk to our new neighbors, I’ve discovered that a lot of them have come from surrounding communities and just wanted to live in a small, quiet town. Can’t argue with that.
I would like to know how many of them grew up in Winters. I know of at least two that retired and moved back home, but I’m sure there will be others. There are city employees who have bought homes and plan on raising their families here. It is nice to be able to live where you work. I don’t consider them starter homes — more like move up homes — but there are a lot of first-time homeowners moving in. It just shows you how out of touch I am with what people earn these days.
Speaking of sticker shock. Did you see where our school board is spending $2.6 million on three modular classrooms? Makes our new homes look cheap. Something is wrong when a classroom cost far more than a house. Makes you glad you voted for the last bond issue.
Have a good week.