(Maggie Hayden of Decorah has submitted the following Letter to the Editor):
"monopoly \muh-nop-uh-lee\ n: an exclusive control of a commodity or service in a particular market making possible manipulation of prices.
Alliant Energy currently has a monopoly on the sale of electric power in Decorah. This enables them to manipulate rates and make profits which are used to pay dividends to shareholders and huge salaries to executives.
A group of concerned citizens examined municipal utilities operating in Iowa and neighboring states and found that Decorah residents pay rates higher than municipal electric customers. So they began to explore the possibility of establishing a Decorah Municipal Electric Utility.
Alliant, moving to protect its monopoly, has taken great measures to put a stop to this group's exploration. They have used scare tactics, emotional pleas and deceptive cost estimations. And who do you think is paying for those blue signs?
Vote YES on or before May 1st to allow the discussion and exploration to continue. Do not let Alliant censor our local citizens."