Printed letters, Jan. 8, 2010

City, DDA whip

golden goose

The goose that laid the golden egg: “Aesop’s Fables” must not be on the reading list of City Council or the Downtown Development Authority.

Clearly Grand Junction’s downtown is a pleasant shopping park. The council and the DDA need to decide if our downtown is primarily a park or a commercial district. The refurbishment project is not funded by the parks department.

Need we continue to whip this poor goose to lay more park golden eggs at the commercial expense of DDA taxpaying businesses when less street parking leads to less business?

Perhaps, when it comes to Internet access, the council should think of the library, and when it comes to events or recreational equipment, the DDA and council should think of the vast expanse of land along the Riverfront Park or other parks in the area. Whitman could use a facelift.

If the DDA leadership insists on cutting open the goose that lays the golden eggs, might we see Pottersville instead of “It’s a Wonderful Life?”


MDS has always been a very good neighbor

Letter writer Chantel Kerr and her neighbors who currently have objections to a group home being built by Mesa Developmental Services are in for a lovely surprise. We lived near an MDS group home for several years and can attest to the organization’s neighborly stewardship.

The home near us was consistently well maintained, with beautiful landscaping, neatly clipped grass and no external signage. There was no more traffic coming and going from the MDS home than with others in our area.

Over the years, we have owned four different homes in the Grand Valley and experienced many different neighbors. While other neighbors have at times disrupted our sleep, neglected their properties or posed other issues, this was never the case with our MDS neighbors.



Food safety bill needed to protect consumers

As a Colorado resident and consumer advocate, I was disappointed that, in his recent column, “Grand Valley farmers could be hurt by federal food-safety bill,” Bill Grant failed to look beyond industry talking points in assessing the effects of the Senate food safety legislation.

Contrary to the arguments Mr. Grant raised in his column, the bipartisan bill currently before the Senate does not include a fee. Both the House and Senate bills do include explicit language directing FDA to take into account the special circumstances of small farmers.

In fact, Sen. Michael Bennet, who serves on the committee which voted unanimously to pass S. 510, played an active role in suggesting changes to the bill that would require FDA to consider organic and sustainable agriculture practices when the agency develops its regulations.

Our current food-safety system is woefully outdated, based on laws enacted over 100 years ago. A lot has changed in the last century, but regulations have not kept pace with those changes. Stronger testing and tracking mechanisms will save lives. They will also help to prevent industrywide scares like last year’s salmonella outbreak. Initially linked to tomatoes, that scare hurt all tomato producers, including the small growers who are least able to weather such market turmoil.

A thoughtful debate about food safety policy is only possible if it is based on facts. Ultimately, it is as simple as this: Americans should not have to worry that the food we feed our families could make them sick, or even kill them, whether that food comes from large producers or small farms.

We must support the efforts of Congress to pass strong food safety legislation as soon as possible.




Fighting in WWII may have been in vain

Because of the Democrats’ frantic rush to push America into socialism, I now think risking my neck in World War II was all in vain.

The America I knew then no longer exists. How very, very sad.



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