The Express deserves praise for a recent flow of articles and letters concerning sprawl, threats to the region‘s natural resources, and the changing face of Northern Michigan.
There can be little doubt that all of the counties, townships, and villages along the Lake Michigan shoreline are faced with the same problems of growth and how to manage it. This story has been on-going for the last 20 years and it appears will go on for many more years. It is the top story in our region and deserves continuous coverage by the Express, Record-Eagle, and all other local media.
Each of the counties, townships, and villages has updated master plans that involved extensive surveys of public opinion. They all indicate the top priority of area residents is protecting the natural resources and existing character of the region, yet our wetlands are still being filled, farmland divided into subdivisions, thousands of trees cut, condominiums built along fragile shoreline areas and small villages faced with doubling of current populations. The rate of change is accelerating rapidly and there seems to be no end in sight as proposed beltways, bypasses, oversized resorts, and any number of other development projects threaten to open new corridors of sprawl. In some cases, the courts wil be thrust into action to determine if and how all this growth will proceed.
In the meantime, conservancies, watershed councils, land use institutes, lake associations, coalitions for sensible growth, and an ever-growing number of other concerned groups and individuals are growing in number and popularity. Their efforts to protect the region‘s valuable natural resources and rural character mandated in all of the region‘s governmental master plans is crucial. The big question is why our elected and appointed officials at the state, county and local levels are not representing this mandate.
The Express is serving a valuable role by presenting this on-going story in an intelligent and in-depth way that will not only inform readers, but urge them to get involved. Keep up the good work and remember, good journalism promotes thought and action.
Greg Reisig Elk Rapids
Chuck Yob has faithfully served the Republican Party for over 30 years and
should not resign from his position as Michigan Republican National
Committeeman and it was ridiculous for Lt. Gov. Dick Posthumus to ask. The
grassroots have spoken and they do not want to lose Chuck Yob.
Chuck has solid record of working hard to recruit women not only to run for
office but to also stay active in the Party. I am such an example as Chuck
has inspired me to stay active in Republican politics.
The elections are coming up fast and we, as Republicans, need to get back on
track. Now more than ever we need a unified front working to get all our
candidates elected, not just Posthumus for Governor but Rocky for Senate,
Mike Cox for Attorney General, and Terri Land for Secretary of State!
Let‘s support Chuck Yob. Period. Exclamation Point.
Jill Coleman Swartz Creek
The cover-up of scandals in the USA, and elsewhere, is present within many churches,
and not just the Catholic Church, and affects all who claim to be “Christian,“ thereby
influencing religions throughout the whole world.
There are many who say they love God, but in reality, they are spiritually lukewarm, for they do not truly practice their faith.
Our country needs more than “flag waving“ to restore it to it‘s former greatness - it needs a “spiritual awaking“ so that people of all faiths will again come to realize the needs of their fellow countrymen, and offer their time and talents to help the less fortunate, not only in the
USA, but in other countries as well. Only then will we have true peace within ourselves,
and also contribute to bringing a just peace to our troubled world.
Vincent Bemowski Menasha, WI
As countless businesses both large and small found out in California a year
ago, an energy crunch can be devastating. Now think of the consequences if
the entire country faced an energy shortage.
That‘s why the U.S. Senate should follow the U.S. House‘s lead when it
returns from its Spring recess and pass President Bush‘s energy plan -
particularly the part that would authorize exploration for new oil in the
remote ANWR region in northern Alaska.
The reality is, America‘s dependence on foreign oil is growing dramatically.
In the 1970‘s, this country only imported a only a third of its oil. Today,
almost 60% of our oil comes from foreign sources. And about 10% of those
imports come from Iraq alone.
It only takes a sliver of common sense to recognize that with uncertainty in
the Middle East, this country needs the option of producing more energy here
Exploring ANWR makes great sense. ANWR is projected to produce over a
million barrels of oil a day - about 20 percent of domestic oil supplies.
It could replace all of the oil we now import from Iraq for the next 50
And ANWR has another advantage: the 2000 acres needed for oil production
(about the size of a regional airport) is in about the most remote and
desolate place in the entire country. In fact, even the roads in ANWR will
be made of ice. As other areas of oil production in Alaska have
demonstrated, this about the most environmentally safe place in this country
to drill for oil.
President, Small Business Survival Committee
Turn off the tube
I am writing on behalf of National TV-Turnoff Week, to be held April 22-28. I am hoping that your publication will consider publicizing this nationwide event along with any local activities that ean provide an alternative to watching TV during that week.
Each year millions of children and adults across the country take those seven days to explore life without TV. In schools, churches, libraries, community organizations, and homes across the nation, folks will take the time to read, exercise, explore the outdoors, talk with friends and family, finish lingering projects and try new hobbies.
Sharron May, TV-Turnoff Coordinator