Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Archives: Jan. 2012

Jan.
30th

SCHOOLS: What about lost educational days?

Re: “Schools may avoid snow makeup days” (TNT, 1-30).

When the weather is so extreme that our local school districts see the need to close schools to protect our children and the people who work with them, are these people been paid for the “day off”?

When the missed day or days off school need to be made up, are the makeup days costing the districts more money? Are the districts asking for a shorter school year because of money or because they just do not want to potentially shorten their summer vacation?

What was never addressed in the

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Jan.
30th

RAINIER: Outings require planning, preparation

How many missing snowshoers or skiers does it take to understand the concepts that “Mother Nature always wins” and “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”?

Every year, we hear stories about folks out for a “short hike” in our mountains who end up lost and then sometimes dead, all for lack of some simple planning.

Taking a walk, even a short one, in the winter in our mountains has a fairly high potential to be dangerous to your health. How does this happen? A sudden, unexpected blizzard. The fog rolls in quickly, and you can’t even

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Jan.
30th

SCHOOLS: Renew Peninsula district levy

We are writing to encourage passage of the Peninsula School District’s replacement levy on Feb. 14. This levy was overwhelmingly approved by voters in 2009 and is in need of a renewal.

We believe that this levy money is well spent and well invested, regardless of whether you have kids in the district. For example, it is no secret that residential property values are influenced by the quality of local schools.

Thanks to these tough financial times, the state has been reducing its funding to public schools, so our school district has already made significant cuts. Accounting for 22 percent

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Jan.
30th

SCHOOLS: ‘Vote No’ signs ignore reality

It is sad to see the “Vote No” signs going up. It is sad to think about the misperceptions and reactionary attitudes that bring forth such signs.

The Peninsula School District has done a difficult job in downsizing to reduce expenditures. We already have the lowest levy tax in Pierce County. The district is not asking to expand the budget or for new money. It desperately needs this levy to maintain what is left after the downsizing and restructuring.

The “Vote No” signs reflect a knee-jerk reaction that does not acknowledge the importance of education. Our future depends on our

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Jan.
30th

FARMS: Pesticide legislation would be disastrous

We should all be greatly troubled by proposed bills in the state Legislature, SB 6937 and its counterpart HB 2413. If passed they would require half-mile spray buffer restrictions on agriculture from homes, buildings and even “natural persons.”

My family has grown apples in the Yakima Valley for over three decades. We have managed to survive by the grace of God through fallen prices, labor shortages and a constant barrage of government regulation. This proposed legislation is part and parcel to the threat of being regulated out of existence as an American farmer.

If this legislation goes into effect, the

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Jan.
30th

POWER: Exposed lines keep us in the dark

Once again, thousands of people had to go days without power due to our ongoing reliance on 19th-century technology – power lines strung between wooden poles and exposed to the elements.

Not only is our local power grid vulnerable to wind, falling trees, etc., but live fallen power lines are a lethal risk.

I am fortunate to live in a community that wisely chose to put power lines underground. Although underground power lines do not eliminate the risk of power outages, they keep neighborhoods from losing power with every gust of wind or falling tree branch.

During our recent winter

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Jan.
30th

GOP: Candidates stage tragic entertainment

It seems to me that a vote for either of the current “front runners” for the Republican presidential nomination would be tantamount to a chicken voting for Colonel Sanders.

Unless, of course, you have access to very large amounts of money which can be used to buy up companies, strip them down, send the work overseas, and count the millions made as income and/or receive huge sums of money for “advising” large corporations how to increase their hoards.

Sure, neither practice is illegal, but which one represents the American people and is in their best interests and in the best

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Jan.
30th

TACOMA: Making some progress on potholes

Re: “Task force lays out partial pothole plan” (TNT, 1-23).

After years of roadway potholes being a public concern, the Tacoma City Council adopted a “Pothole Initiative” and formed a citizens committee (Mobility Stakeholder Funding Task Force) to address funding needed for transportation infrastructure repairs estimated to cost at least $800 million.

That committee recently recommended a property tax increase (requiring voter approval) and a $20 car-tab fee which together would raise an estimated $24 million a year. The $800 million in needed repair is an overwhelming sum, but give the City Council credit for beginning a long process

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