Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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What‘s Best for Acme

Margy and Jim Goss - August 4th, 2005
(The following is a response to Governor Bill Milliken‘s guest opinion in last week‘s Express regarding an Aug. 2 vote on whether the Acme Township Board should go ahead with a nine-month moratorium on big box stores to study their impact on the township. -- ed.)

My husband and I are voting NO on the Acme Township moratorium this Tuesday, August 2 and want to tell you why.
We were born and raised in Traverse City, with family roots in Bates, Williamsburg, and Acme. We feel fortunate to have finally returned to Acme, year-round. For 31 summers, East Bay was our summer cottage destination, where our boys played with other Acme kids along Bay Valley Drive and Maitland Road, occasionally enjoyed Arne‘s Funland, and raced the bumper cars behind Don‘s Drive In. We felt like we had “come home“ when we added on and created our permanent residence here.
We wanted to do something special for Acme, as a way of giving back to the residents who have been such good stewards of the land. Our partners joined us in designing the most beautiful mixed-use village on 182 acres along the M-72 trunkline.
Perhaps you can imagine our surprise and dismay when ex-Governor Milliken gave what we felt were misleading impressions of excess in describing our project which includes a hotel, esplanade, shops and Meijer anchor store, TART Trail bike paths, senior housing, various types of residential housing to meet a continuum of economic needs, community and educational buildings,
recreation fields, and numerous entertainment venues.
The Village at Grand Traverse was designed to contain Milliken‘s predicted “sprawl“ over its 20 year build-out, and would have given “heart“ and economic synergy to Acme‘s Towne Center. That‘s why the previous Township Board twice granted us permission to build. And each time they did, the Concerned Citizens of Acme Township (CCAT) sued the township to obstruct our progress, hiding behind the courts and local judges rather than mediating to find common ground and a win-win for everyone.
Unfortunately, powerful special interest and non-profit groups are at work in Acme, such as CCAT, the Michigan Land Use Institute, Grand Traverse Land Conservancy, Grand Traverse Watershed, and NMEAC. They seem to want control of our land and waters for their own purposes. A Traverse City Smart Growth advocate has indicated Acme should be a rich bedroom community, like Grand Haven. If we lose this moratorium vote to the “yes“ side, we will never again have any say about future direction or growth in Acme. It will be visioned and mapped by Traverse City and regional interests to meet their needs, not ours.
If you‘re a property owner, taxpayer, or voter, beware of the advice our township board is taking from ex-CCAT lawyer, Chris Bzdok. The obstructive direction of this new board is opening our wallets to unjust taxation without compensation; the cry “Taxation without representation!“ is way too close to the truth!
Last August, only 50% of us were heard from at the polls. Please, let‘s make it 100% on August 2 and learn what Acme really wants. Vote “NO“ to welcome Meijer to Acme and discover what wonderful neighbors we all can be.

Mary and Jim Goss are part of the development team for the Village at Grand Traverse in Acme Township.

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