Letters

Letters 10-27-2014

Paging Doctor Dan: The doctor’s promise to repeal Obamacare reminds me of the frantic restaurant owner hurrying to install an exhaust fan after the kitchen burns down. He voted 51 times to replace the ACA law; a colossal waste of money and time. It’s here to stay and he has nothing to replace it.

Evolution Is Real Science: Breathtaking inanity. That was the term used by Judge John Jones III in his elegant evisceration of creationist arguments attempting to equate it to evolutionary theory in his landmark Kitzmiller vs. Dover Board of Education decision in 2005.

U.S. No Global Police: Steven Tuttle in the October 13 issue is correct: our military, under the leadership of the President (not the Congress) is charged with protecting the country, its citizens, and its borders. It is not charged with  performing military missions in other places in the world just because they have something we want (oil), or we don’t like their form of government, or we want to force them to live by the UN or our rules.

Graffiti: Art Or Vandalism?: I walk the [Grand Traverse] Commons frequently and sometimes I include the loop up to the cistern just to go and see how the art on the cistern has evolved. Granted there is the occasional gross image or word but generally there is a flurry of color.

NMEAC Snubbed: Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) is the Grand Traverse region’s oldest grassroots environmental advocacy organization. Preserving the environment through citizen action and education is our mission.

Vote, Everyone: Election Day on November 4 is fast approaching, and now is the time to make a commitment to vote. You may be getting sick of the political ads on TV, but instead, be grateful that you live in a free country with open elections. Take the time to learn about the candidates by contacting your county parties and doing research.

Do Fluoride Research: Hydrofluorosilicic acid, H2SiF6, is a byproduct from the production of fertilizer. This liquid, not environmentally safe, is scrubbed from the chimney of the fertilizer plant, put into containers, and shipped. Now it is a ‘product’ added to the public drinking water.

Meet The Homeless: As someone who volunteers for a Traverse City organization that works with homeless people, I am appalled at what is happening at the meetings regarding the homeless shelter. The people fighting this shelter need to get to know some homeless families. They have the wrong idea about who the homeless are.

Home · Articles · News · Region Watch · Group accuses CMU of...
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Group accuses CMU of keeping a lid on survey of controversial wind project/Groundbreaking for Sleeping Bear bike path

- August 8th, 2011
Group accuses CMU of keeping a lid on survey of controversial wind project
By Patrick Sullivan
A citizens group opposed to a wind farm in Benzie and Manistee counties
says Central Michigan University (CMU) is keeping documents related to the
project from public view.
An attorney for Arcadia Wind Study Group filed a lawsuit last week that
seeks to force CMU to release hundreds of pages of documents.
CMU and Duke Energy entered into an agreement on March 1 to undertake a
study called “Township Views of Alternative Energy and Wind Farms.”
Duke agreed to pay CMU $21,581 for the work.
Now, Arcadia says, CMU will not release the results of the study.
A call for comment to the CMU general counsel’s office was referred to the
school’s communication’s office, which did not return a message seeking
comment.

INFO REQUEST
The Arcadia group filed a request under the Michigan Freedom of
Information Act on May 5 for records related to that study and a report
university researchers prepared for Duke, according to the lawsuit.
Three weeks later, CMU informed Arcadia that its request would only
partially be granted, citing exemptions in the
FOIA law.
The university refused to turn over survey results, survey data, and the
final report on the basis that those items were the property of Duke
Energy.
When the university was still slow to turn over documents it did deem
public, Arcadia filed a lawsuit in the 19th Circuit Court in Manistee
County.

DAMAGES SOUGHT
For the study, CMU agreed to conduct telephone and mail surveys of
residents of Arcadia, Blaine, Joyfield and Pleasanton townships.
Jesse Williams, attorney for Arcadia, said he doesn’t know why the
university is reluctant to turn over documents.
“I don’t know, I have not spoken to their counsel,” Williams said. “I
would like at least an opportunity to have someone explain that to me.”
The lawsuit seeks an order to force CMU to turn over all of the requested
documents, damages of $500, and attorney fees for Arcadia. The maximum
damage amount allowed under FOIA is $500.
“We really hoped we could have avoided going through the courts,” Doug
Carter, president of the Arcadia Wind Study Group, said in a statement.
Duke Energy is not a party in the suit and the suit does not allege any
wrongdoing against Duke.
“This was a privately commissioned survey, commissioned for the sole
purpose of helping Duke Energy refine the project’s footprint,” said Duke
spokesman Greg Efthimiou.
The wind proposal has divided some residents of the rural townships.
Some residents object to the project, saying the turbines would be placed
too close to homes and they could harm property values.
Proponents of the project say it’s a way of producing clean energy while
bringing millions of dollars into the region’s economy.

Groundbreaking for Sleeping Bear bike path
The Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail in the national park will have its
groundbreaking ceremony at the Dune Climb on Friday, August 12 at 11 a.m.
When completed, the 27-mile trail will run from the southern edge of
Leelanau County through the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore north
to Good
Harbor Bay.
A news release from TART Trails states that the groundbreaking will
celebrate the upcoming construction of nearly five miles of trail between
Glen Arbor and the Dune Climb. Construction is scheduled to begin this
fall and be completed next year.
The trail is a project of the Leelanau Scenic Heritage Route Committee
(LSHR) in partnership with the Michigan Department of Transportation,
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Friends of Sleeping Bear Dunes,
and TART Trails.
Funding for the trail comes from federal and state grants, foundations,
and individual donations.
“After five years, this amazing Leelanau Scenic Heritage Route project is
taking physical shape. By this time next year, we will be able to safely
bike, walk, or wheel from the Dune Climb to Glen Arbor with the
opportunity to stop at other park sites in between, ” said Patty
O’Donnell, Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail project manager - Northwest
Michigan Council of Governments
The trail was included in the National Lakeshore’s most recent management
plan and garnered strong public support during the planning process.
According to Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Superintendent Dusty
Shultz the “The Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail is the single most exciting
project to come out of our recently completed General Management Plan.
The trail will provide a wonderful way to explore and learn about the
park, as well as become a meaningful alternative for visitors to travel
between park sites and local businesses – without having to use their
cars!” -- Express staff reports
 
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