Neighboring jurisdictions should be able to find common ground.

After years of wariness the City of Beloit and the Town of Beloit have taken steps to put the past behind them and work closer together for the betterment of the community.

Now it’s time for the city and the Town of Turtle to do the same.

The two local government units have been at odds over what comes next when the existing boundary agreement expires this year. There’s an issue over whether a city resolution dating back about a decade should result in an automatic extension of the existing deal. Lawyers and courts are involved, and that rarely ends well for the people.

Here’s how we see it.

If not for the deal reached in the late 1990s Beloit would have remained landlocked and all the good things that have happened east of Interstate 39/90 very likely wouldn’t exist. New business developments brought thousands of jobs to the region. New housing tracts resulted in much-needed single- and multi-family residential neighborhoods being built.

Meanwhile, the rural atmosphere treasured by Turtle residents has been appropriately preserved. Good planning benefits everybody.

There are real opportunities to continue opening prime development zones while working cooperatively to preserve farmland and the quiet way of life. The interstate corridor remains the most attractive land for efforts aimed at growing industrial jobs, retail properties and orderly residential neighborhoods.

Like the Gateway zone, though, getting from here to there requires local governmental leaders to set aside grievances and find common ground on matters important to everybody. That shouldn’t be so hard to achieve.

We’ve said it before. Fly over this area and one thing is unmistakable. This is one community, tied together by common interests. Reason and goodwill can lead to improvements that benefit all concerned.

There’s no intent in this commentary to haggle over specifics or choose sides in any dispute. That’s what negotiations are about, to settle disagreements and chart a path to a result that achieves a beneficial outcome. We encourage all parties to get there.