Letters to the editor — Oct. 17, 2018

Neupert, Benedict, Nichols

The Clallam County justice system affects us more personally than the state Legislature, Congress or White House.

Three candidates on our election ballot have shown incomparable dedication to the law — Bill Benedict, sheriff; Mark Nichols, prosecuting attorney; and Dave Neupert, who has demonstrated the legal knowledge, calm-and-collected temperament, family values and community commitment needed to become our next District Court 1 judge.

Benedict has built the sheriff’s office into one of the best in the state while being a conservative administrator with our tax dollars. His efficient, effective leadership has resulted in Clallam County being the only county in the state with its jail and operations accredited by the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs, meeting more than 100 best-practice standards.

Nichols is known for innovation, careful and thoughtful legal arguments and respectful treatment toward all. He holds criminals accountable while also being a leader of efforts to establish a mental health court for our county.

Neupert has extensive experience as a judge protem for District Court 1 in addition to practicing criminal and civil law here for more than 25 years. I’ve watched him in the courtroom. There are no questions about his temperament. He is deliberate and empathetic. He is tactful and balanced. And the county has benefited from his thousands of hours of volunteer service to United Way, Peninsula Behavioral Health, Peninsula College Foundation and Habitat for Humanity. He walks the talk.

I urge you to vote for Neupert, Benedict and Nichols.

John Brewer

Port Angeles

Editor’s note: Brewer is former publisher/editor of the SequimGazette and Peninsula Daily News.

Vote to keep fire services

Several years ago, my neighbor’s house caught on fire and if it were not for the swift response of the fire department personnel and their equipment, both of our houses would have been lost.

As citizens, we live daily with the presumption that a 9-1-1 call will bring immediate and adequate response to whatever emergency we are facing. Yet, due to some complicated funding laws, our local fire department has seen a 33 percent increase in emergency calls in the last seven years while funding has actually decreased.

The department is unable to purchase desperately needed new equipment and has had to turn down potential revenue grants due to the lack of matching funds. Costs to provide service will exceed revenue in 2019 and start draining reserves. If this continues, the fire district will not have adequate reserves to fund staffing and other routine expenses, necessitating significant service level and program cuts.

To restore adequate funding for emergency services in our community, please vote yes for the Fire District 3 levy Lid Lift on Tuesday, Nov. 6.

Susan Park

Sequim

Give library offerings room to grow

I love the library … that is, the services and the staff … the building itself, not so much. I grab and go … picking up audio books, newly released movies, a TV series I always wanted to see — all reserved easily online and absolutely free. A community treasure.

I don’t stay in the library. It’s uncomfortable and crowded. Occasionally however, I begrudgingly acquiesce. That’s when there’s a topic or speaker of interest I know I’ll enjoy. Then I squeeze into the uncomfortable, 40-person-capacity conference room along with others some of whom have to stand or sit on the floor. I always notice the folks who didn’t get there early enough, can’t find any room and leave.

It shouldn’t be this way. And it doesn’t have to be. We finally, finally have the opportunity we’ve been waiting for. To obtain the quality of library this community needs and deserves now and for the future. The cost … less than $5/month for the average homeowner. Suits both my entertainment budget and my desire to invest in my community. And you?

The hard fact is that the facility we now have was built in 1983 … that’s 35 years ago … to serve a population of 14,000. Our growing population is now double that. We haven’t kept pace with our numbers or the necessary technology to serve our youth and others. And it shows.

Think local. Here’s where we can really make a difference. Let’s do it. Remember to vote yes twice – once for each of the library propositions.

Susan Molin

Sequim

Vote for Neupert

David Neupert is running for the Clallam County District Court position 1.

He has my vote, unequivocally. I have known Dave for several years. He has always been honest, hard working and engaged. He is such a community-minded individual; it reminds me of the old days with a modern twist. Dave has his heart in this community and loves it. He is the best candidate, and has my support down the line.

Thanks to Dave for the all the work he does for us!

Jen Gouge

Port Angeles

Be informed before voting

We all remember the Limbo challenging a person’s ability to go “as low as you can go”. This must be the theme for today’s Democrat Party which was put on full display during the Kavanaugh-Ford Senate testimony.

I didn’t think the Democrats could get any lower than they already were, but their totally repulsive display during this hearing actually accomplished this.

Voters need to quickly wake-up to the fact that today’s Democrat Party is nothing even close to that of their parents and grandparents. It is now a radical left-wing socialist organization that seems hell-bent on destroying everything this country was built on, a better fit for Castro’s Cuba.

Democrats have never seen a tax they didn’t love; they prefer to control and regulate us to a standstill. They are fully for open, uncontrolled borders allowing any criminal or terrorist to walk into our country. They prefer to decimate our national defense, kowtow to enemies and keep America weak.

This is just a small start of how pathetic the Democrat Party has become today. In this writer’s opinion the only way a person could possibly vote for any Democrat today is by being terribly uninformed because no informed person would ever vote for one.

The vast majority of the mainstream media is now also far left and nothing more than a propaganda arm of the Democrat Party, much like the old Pravda was to the Soviet Communist Party.

Please, take the time to get yourself informed before voting. Our future depends on it.

Greg Carroll

Sequim

Time for Dems to stand out

The Tea Party managed to change the entire country with a small minority of the population represented. I am so disgusted that the Democrats cannot find a leader who can come up with ways to win arguments, get the truth to the people or successfully oppose ridiculously right wing appointments. We need a true leader with innovative ideas.

I urge my elected officials to find someone. I don’t know if that means new leadership in the House and Senate or for Senators Cantwell and Murray as well as Representative Kilmer to really stand up. I am watching my country go into the toilet.

How can we have possibly approved a man to the Supreme Court justice without receiving 95 percent of the information about him. There must’ve been a way to stop that process, but no one was on the ball.

Please get the Democratic message out to the public. I don’t see enough of my officials out interviewing and calling out Trump and the Republicans on their lying. All we see on the news is the Republicans in their lies; no one is contesting this. Well, except MSNBC. We need it on the local news channels.

I know my elected officials work hard and I thank them for this, but we need really innovative decisive actions to take this country back. Our institutions are being ruined—our democracy destroyed. I certainly hope the Bluewave happens and I know everyone I know is out there, working hard for the Democrats and for people not owned by big money.

Kelly Watson

Sequim

Break in students loans needed

Today, the USA, richest nation in the world, is ranked 16th overall in education, 19th in science and 30th in mathematics.

One reason for these low numbers might be the costs of secondary education, after graduation, from K-12 public schools. U.S. four-year college/university tuition ranges from $13,000 in South Dakota to $39,000 in Vermont, not to mention costs of fees, books and supplies, housing, food and transportation. As a result, most students require monetary loans to attend these institutions.

While most people do not know the details of student loans, interest rates are extremely high and loan repayment schedules are demanding. The net effects are substantial personal debt ($50,000 to more than $200,000) for extended periods, which impact one’s future life like buying a home, supporting a family and ancillary expenses (insurances, transportation, food, recreation, property maintenance, et. al).

Some politicians are advocating free college/university education to qualified K-12 graduates, which may not be practical. But just reducing student loan interest rates (currently 5-8 percent) to inflation rates (e.g., about 2 percent) would be a significant education cost incentive for many capable students to pursue secondary education.

Moral: Penalizing capable students with high interest rate, high cost loans is self-defeating, both in education incentives and later earned/desired quality of life.

Richard Hahn

Sequim

Safety first, always

Every morning the three of us — me, my son and Makana, who is 8 years old — ride our bikes two miles each way to Greywolf Elementary School in Carlsborg even in the rain, because Makana loves to ride.

On the way home, in front of the school, this one house always has garbage cans in the bike lane. We would go around it. Then we decided it was too dangerous, so my son would stop and move it off the bike path. Yesterday (Oct. 11), as my son was pushing the two cans off the bike lane, Makana went around my son into traffic and was almost hit by an 18-wheeler. The semi-truck was going slow and away from us but Makana almost got in front of him.

I’m suggesting there should be a law across the nation get your garbage cans off the bike path ASAP or be responsible for any accident it caused. Also, have the garbage truck driver push the cans off the bike paths.

If Makana was killed we would be pushing for this law and called it the Makana’s Law — but I’m so happy that Makana is alive, it should still be called the Makana’s Law.

Jerome Cox

Sequim

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