Letters 10-17-2016

Here’s The Truth The group Save our Downtown (SOD), which put Proposal 3 on the ballot, is ignoring the negative consequences that would result if the proposal passes. Despite the group’s name, the proposal impacts the entire city, not just downtown. Munson Medical Center, NMC, and the Grand Traverse Commons are also zoned for buildings over 60’ tall...

Keep TC As-Is In response to Lynda Prior’s letter, no one is asking the people to vote every time someone wants to build a building; Prop. 3 asks that people vote if a building is to be built over 60 feet. Traverse City will not die but will grow at a pace that keeps it the city people want to visit and/or reside; a place to raise a family. It seems people in high-density cities with tall buildings are the ones who flock to TC...

A Right To Vote I cannot understand how people living in a democracy would willingly give up the right to vote on an impactful and important issue. But that is exactly what the people who oppose Proposal 3 are advocating. They call the right to vote a “burden.” Really? Since when does voting on an important issue become a “burden?” The heart of any democracy is the right of the people to have their voice heard...

Reasons For NoI have great respect for the Prop. 3 proponents and consider them friends but in this case they’re wrong. A “yes” vote on Prop. 3 is really a “no” vote on..

Republican Observations When the Republican party sends its presidential candidates, they’re not sending their best. They’re sending people with a lot of problems. They’re sending criminals, they’re sending deviate rapists. They’re sending drug addicts. They’re sending mentally ill. And some, I assume, are good people...

Stormy Vote Florida Governor Scott warns people on his coast to evacuate because “this storm will kill you! But in response to Hillary Clinton’s suggestion that Florida’s voter registration deadline be extended because a massive evacuation could compromise voter registration and turnout, Republican Governor Scott’s response was that this storm does not necessitate any such extension...

Third Party Benefits It has been proven over and over again that electing Democrat or Republican presidents and representatives only guarantees that dysfunction, corruption and greed will prevail throughout our government. It also I believe that a fair and democratic electoral process, a simple and fair tax structure, quality health care, good education, good paying jobs, adequate affordable housing, an abundance of healthy affordable food, a solid, well maintained infrastructure, a secure social, civil and public service system, an ecologically sustainable outlook for the future and much more is obtainable for all of us...

Home · Articles · News · Letters · Letters 02-06-2012
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Letters 02-06-2012

- February 6th, 2012  

Email your letter to: info@northernexpress.com

Please keep your letter under 300 words (one page).

Only one letter per reader in a two month period will be accepted. may be edited for length or to correct factual errors. Letters must be signed to be considered for print and a phone number is required for verification. Faxed letters are not accepted.

Government supports farmers

We want to take a moment to express how deeply disappointed we are in your negligent journalism (re: ‘From Farm to Table…to Poor House’). It is irresponsible of you to have printed an ill-informed article on small-scale, local farming. We are the taco stand up the street from the “farm” you highlighted in your recent issue. We are an established farm/business and try to provide our community with clean, fresh produce, as do many hardworking, mindful farmers in this area.

Local government is set up to represent the community it serves; as do zoning ordinances, health codes, building permits, etc. This particular county is supportive of its local farmers. In fact, it is a community made up of farmers, some who have been growing food for generations.

The taco stand was approved for operation by the township because we farm. One stipulation relating to the taco stand requires that a portion of our product come from our farm. In addition, the tacos encourage people to stop and purchase produce from our roadside market and U-pick.

When pursuing auxiliary endeavors – such as doughnut shops, B&B’s, middle-man produce distributors, etc. – the county can be arduous in its thoroughness, however these ordinances and rules are designed so that if a business fails, the community is not left to clean it up.

The Cedar Sol Taco Stand is not “out of a garage.” It is in a township-approved, community-supported, health-departmentinspected Roadside Produce Market. It is a Northern Michigan summer hot-spot and is frequented by both locals and tourists. There is good music, an amazing chef, authentic tacos, farm-fresh produce, as well as one of the most beautiful views in Leelanau County.

We invite you to come on out! Come see for yourself the farms and businesses that are thriving.

Michael McHugh • Cedar

Obamacare works

Thanks to Obama’s Affordable Care Act (ACA), Michiganders are extending their lives and putting more money in their pockets. Nearly 556,000 MI children under the age of 19 with a pre-existing medical condition can no longer be denied insurance coverage, giving their parents peace of mind.

Nearly 1.5 million Medicare MI beneficiaries can now receive free preventive services such as mammograms, colonoscopies as well as free annual wellness visits with their doctor, enhancing their care. Additionally, MI Medicare beneficiaries who fell into the drug gap known as the “donut hole” received an overall out-of-pocket savings of $559 per person this past year.

Obama’s Affordable Care Act is actively protecting MI consumers by cracking down on insurance companies’ ridiculous rate hikes, and requiring them to spend health care premiums on health care services.

A specific provision in the ACA requires large insurance companies to spend at least 85% of their premium dollars on the actual delivery of health services to their customers, rather than overhead costs such as mega-salaries to their CEO’s, and big cash dividends to their stockholders.

Governor Snyder recently stated that his # 1 priority was to provide a more customer service government, yet, this fall the governor requested that MI insurance companies be exempted from meeting the 85% health premium rule predicting it would be too burdensome and costly for the insurance companies.

Late December 2011, Health and Human Services denied the exemption request and ordered insurance companies to rebate Michigan consumers up to $89 million over the next 3 years. Now that is what I call customer service! So the next time you hear sound bites about Obama Care, know this: provisions within the Affordable Care Act clearly show—our President does care!

Catherine Hunter • Boyne City

Organic farming fastgrowing

Thanks for the article on Organic Farming. I will not paint quite as bleak a picture as Patrick Sullivan has.

Organic is tough, no doubt. It is usually based on what is known as bio-intensive farming; you make up for big chemical additions with a lot of literally hands-on work, plus monitoring your soil for the right nutrient balances and correcting it with non-chemical adjustments. The results outproduce typical chemical farming by 50%.

For home use it is wonderful.

Commercially what you really need is a high volume local outlet for your product. This is where the booming world of Farmers Markets come in. Michigan has seen 150% growth in Farmers Markets in only the last few years. In Northern Michigan the summer tourist crop is a real shot in the arm to local farmers. Try to hook up with the biggest market you can, or several smaller ones on assorted days. Traverse City has several, and Boyne City has over 70 vendors mid-summer, to just name two towns.

Finally, like any new product, organic is going to cost more until sales increase as more people come over from regular commercial production. But as last weekend’s Small Farms Conference in Grayling demonstrated, organic is growing fast – over 800 attendees, seminars all day, many vendors and industry representatives.

Mark Contrucci • Mark C s Trees Boyne City Farmers Market

Fracking dangerous alternative

Fresh water contaminated and forever removed from the hydrologic cycle; poisoned air, rivers and streams; gas well leaks and explosions; debilitating health problems including asthma, neurological disease and cancer; dead wildlife and livestock; earthquakes; toxic gas plumes causing families to evacuate their homes; poisoned and exploding water wells; loss of property value and ruined roads from 24-hour truck traffic … These events have occurred in every state permitting horizontal fracking for natural gas extraction.

What do we get in return for allowing gas companies to exploit and destroy our health and environment?

NOT fuel independence: Gas is sold on the international market. Most goes overseas to China and India. Many companies drilling in the U.S. including in Michigan are foreignowned.

NOT an improved economy: Gas drilling is a boom/bust industry. A few may get rich but many more lose as home values plummet and health care costs rise due to pollution from drilling. The industrialization of large swaths of forested state land destroys tourism-based business and the environment.

Horizontal fracking poses the biggest threat yet to Michigan’s environment, economy and public health. Tax subsidies and exemptions from environmental laws enjoyed by gas companies make it impossible for green energy technologies to develop and compete.

It has already been banned in France, South Africa and Quebec. Detroit and Wayne County, and over 100 municipalities across the country, have passed resolutions calling for a ban. Over 3,000 people in northern Michigan have signed a petition to ban horizontal fracking.

Horizontal fracking is a short-sighted industrialization of rural landscapes which benefits only a privileged few. Its total carbon footprint is dirtier than coal. Its continued use simply delays the conversion to clean, green energy and exacts a huge permanent toll on our lives, health and the environment. We must ban its use.

Anne Zukowski • Charlevoix

CORRECTION: The article “SPACE AGE SNURFING” should have said the Safety Leash goes around the wrist, not the ankle.

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