What about you and me? | PostIndependent.com

What about you and me?

Dear Editor,I recently saw a public opinion poll done by CNN, which showed 77 percent of the people polled believed that there was price gouging going on during the current rise in gasoline prices. Did you know that the Democrats proposed a bill (HR3402) last week in the House of Representatives to help deal with this problem? Republicans defeated a Democratic bid for more federal steps against alleged price gouging during energy shortages. A yes vote was to require the Federal Trade Commission to define price gouging and other agencies to vigorously probe complaints. Colorados vote was on party lines, with Democrats voting yes and Republicans no.I really wonder who the Republicans are representing: big oil companies or you and me? It would seem to me that since some of the oil companies profits are up more than 200 percent in the last year, they should be accountable for fleecing you and me. Next time you go to the gasoline pump and are concerned about the price that keeps going up, thank your Republican representatives, as they sure are not representing you and me.Also in the Senate during the prior week, the Republicans defeated a Democratic measure that would have added $10 million for counseling services to returning veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan. It is beyond my comprehension why the Republicans would defeat this bill. No wonder the Army was 7,000 recruits short this last enlistment cycle. If youre young and thinking about joining, please look at the above fact before you make that critical decision. If your representative is not willing to help you upon your return from a very emotional experience with counseling, please do not put your life on the line for them.Michael P. BlairNew Castle

Dear Editor,Referendum C is the no refund for you tax increase. This means the State of Colorado keeps all of your excess tax refunds for five years. The estimated cost is $3.1 billion, or $3,200 per family of four. But because the State keeps all of your excess tax funds, that number could go much higher. It is a forever tax increase, as the Government is the one thing that defies the basic law of gravity (that which goes up must come down). Once state spending has ratcheted up, it will never go down, because the highest level of spending will become the new baseline. Ref. C would give the state legislature more than three times the amount of money it claims it needs under the current TABOR act. The state budget is at an all time high. It increased to $15.2 billion, up 7 percent just this year. Its time to vote no on C & D. Jan WalkerRifle

Dear Editor,Now that the Exit 114 roundabouts are nearing completion, perhaps the city should send out and/or publish in the newspaper instructions on how to use them. In my experience with them so far its obvious that people using them have no clue. To the person who didnt even slow down when entering the roundabout from Highway 6 last night, causing me to brake and swerve to avoid hitting you, that upside-down triangle means you should yield the right of way to vehicles already in the circle. We can only hope that the city places as much signage around the super colliders, I mean roundabouts, as they did around the planters on Midland. Maybe if there was a City Council member living in the neighborhood.Brian MartinNew Castle

Dear Editor,I was almost taken by all the propaganda surrounding the issue of fluoride in our drinking water, until I consulted reputable sources, reputable being the key word here. Two of my sources were the CDC and The American Academy of Pediatrics. The truth is, the safety of fluoride in drinking water at levels recommended for preventing tooth decay has been affirmed by numerous scientific and professional groups, including the National Research Council, an affiliate of the National Academy of Sciences. The American Academy of Pediatrics Web site states that scientists have found a lack of evidence to show an association between water fluoridation and a negative impact on people, plants, or animals. Systematic reviews have been conducted by several scientific and public health organizations over the past two decades. All have concluded that community water fluoridation is a safe and effective method for reducing tooth decay across all ages. In fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the U.S. Public Health Department, and the American Dental Association have all recommended that from six months to 16 years, children with growing teeth should receive fluoride supplements either in their diet or in the water they drink. I urge city council and all residents to research this issue using reputable sources, not political propaganda. Susie KelloggGlenwood Springs

Dear Editor,I almost fell out of my chair when I read Tuesdays article that named various Colleen Truden recall petition signees. Granted, I frequently almost fall off my chair. But this time I was in my car, so it was weird.What threw me was that reporter Dennis Webb named prominent Republican signees, but became coy when it came to outing his news colleagues, stating only that two Aspen journalists who have written about the recall effort have signed the petition. Which ones? And does this include local editors, who may not have directly reported on the recall effort, but influence public opinion via story placement, emphasis, and (unsigned) editorials? Yes, there were many valid reasons to sign the recall petition. I signed it, too. But the valley news coverage of the Truden fiasco has at times been tinged with pettiness and maliciousness. I find it amazing that no media outlet has been able to locate a single Truden supporter to quote in her defense. Bad as she may be, its implausible that she has no supporters anywhere, when in fact the petition barely exceeded the 10 percent threshold.Readers deserve to know whether journalists involved with the Truden story have signed the petition therefore having an on-the-record bias toward it. Im not saying that journalists cant have lives outside the newsroom or any such garbage. But if they have taken a private stand, it may render their journalistic objectivity disingenuous. Disclosure from any petition-signing Valley journalists would be appropriate, as would within-story disclosure in future stories. Anybody? Jeremy SimonCarbondaleEditors note: The two Aspen journalists listed as petition signers referred to in the Oct. 4 story include Aspen Times reporter Janet Urquhart and Aspen Daily News editor Rick Carrol. To our knowledge, no Post Independent reporters or members of the editorial board signed the recall petition.

Dear Editor, The high road that Marianne Virgili has taken, and continues to take, is a true reflection of her integrity, her honesty and her character as an individual. What other leader do we know who, in times of challenge and critique, continues to stay the course and drive for results with the business at hand.Marianne, the board, the city of Glenwood Springs, the chamber membership and the chamber staff have created a working chamber model that is known and respected statewide and has gained national recognition. The model has been created and molded through the hard work of community leaders, innovative thinking, long hours and years of focus and drive, plus honest and fair leadership. Yet lets not forget Marianne, who is the driving catalyst that has brought this respected model together. Thousands of taxpayer dollars and many hours both past and present have been justifiably spent to audit and track the spending of the city funds that are allocated to the chamber marketing and promotional fund. The past audits proved to show the chamber and its director to be 100 percent accountable, and checks and balances were put in place so the future expense of audits would not be necessary. It is disappointing to see that we are repeating this cycle. The question is, what happened to the checks and balances that were put in place? Personally, I would bet on an accountable outcome and a clean record. In the meantime, Marianne, thanks for taking the high road.Dave SheriffFormer chamber president and board memberGlenwood Springs

Dear Editor,A yes vote on Ballot Issue 2A means the extension of the current 1⁄4-cent sales tax and the addition of another 1⁄4-cent sales tax, all for your neighborhood street maintenance, reconstruction, and related projects. Without this tax, Glenwood cannot keep up with the rising costs of neighborhood streets, traffic-calming plans, the completion of the Eighth Street connection and other projects that the citizens and council recognize as important. Opponents of this tax will tell you that the city has money in its budget and we do not need to raise the tax. The city will keep the roads repaired. Maybe, but at what expense? Projected costs for street maintenance, in todays dollars, are in excess of $900,000 per year. That money needs to come from somewhere. Sales tax has always been the base for city operations. Look at your most recent tax bill from the county and see what your contribution is to the city for property tax it is less that 1 percent of the total city budget. Property tax collected by the City of Glenwood Springs in less than $400,000 annually. With sales tax, non-residents of Glenwood Springs pay 65 percent of your tax bill. This is the most equitable way of paying for the infrastructure we all use daily. The current tax expires Dec. 31, and so does the funding for street reconstruction, the Eighth Street connection and scheduled maintenance of your neighborhood streets. I ask for your support, and ask that you vote yes on Ballot Issue 2A to help maintain and improve the City of Glenwood Springs to the level we desire and expect. Join Community on the Move and vote.Sam SkramstadGlenwood Springs

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