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Your letters

I read an article the other day that said, “Expenses associated with ‘illegal aliens’ costs taxpayers $335 billion and more.”

I have no problem with hard-working Mexicans who are here legally. That’s what made America great.

But when $2.2 billion a year goes for food assistance in food stamps; the Women, Infants and Children program; free school lunches and so on, we need heavy legislation.

For every illegal that’s come into our country illegally, they need to charge the Mexican government for taking care of their people. We could put the pinch on their aid or interest they pay the banks for their loans.

This article states that $11 billion and $22 billion is blown on welfare each year. Many immigrant families get welfare through their U.S. citizen children. Congress thinks we’re all wealthy enough to pick up the tab for their support.

People have to remember the U.S. taxes we pay are from us, not them. We need to be first, especially when we have to pay so many high taxes here and pay our gas bills.

Susan Cooley

Glenwood Springs

Everyone seems to be enjoying Glenwood’s new Whitewater Park. They are kayaking, rafting and even surfing on the new wave. Others are just enjoying watching, filming, and having fun in the sun.

Glenwood’s Whitewater Park is listed as a class III or moderate rapid primarily because it has turbulent flows. The wave was designed to be “sticky” so that kayakers can “surf ” it and do freestyle kayaking tricks. Rafters can take the smooth water boat chute on river right, or if you’re “gutsy” turn the bow of your boat straight into the wave and “punch” through. It is a great ride!

There have been some rafters getting “dumped” in the wave, and folks go swimming off; as well as a few boat flips. In all cases everyone has been fine because they took the necessary precaution and wore life jackets or Personal Flotation Devices (PFD’s). Whitewater rafting is a very safe sport when people follow the rule, “Safety First.”

For these reasons the Glenwood Springs River commission and City Council have posted the park with a “life jackets required” sign. We don’t want anyone, especially kids, to get the wrong idea that it is okay to go in the river without a PFD.

The reality of the situation is this. Rivers like the mighty Colorado have turbulent flows and heavy sediments that can suck you down and grind you into the rocks. To those of us who kayak and raft often it is a given that we put on our life jackets and check that they are secure before we go out on the water.

Even at low flows those who don’t wear a PFD are taking a risk with their lives. They also endanger other people who may have to try to go rescue them and sometimes “recover them.”

There are many great new types of PFD’s on the market today. The most appropriate PFD’s are type III-IV Coast Guard approved and provide a minimum of 16 or more pounds of floatation. They can be viewed and purchased on line from places like NRS or at local kayak and other sporting good stores. Many of our local rafting companies also rent them out.

Thanks for listening and playing it safe!

Joe Mollica

Glenwood Springs River Commission

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