Printed letters, Dec. 29, 2010

This letter is SEMA Construction’s position in regard to the repair work being performed on the Riverside Parkway, regarding The Daily Sentinel story printed on Dec. 21, “Problems continue to plague $110 million Riverside Parkway.”

SEMA believes that the need for the repairs is not due to defective materials or workmanship, and that those repairs should thus not be characterized as warranty repairs. SEMA is performing this repair work in order to maintain its good relationship with the city of Grand Junction, not as part of any warranty obligation. The work that is being performed is to remedy cosmetic and roadway ride quality concerns. The structural integrity of the bridges is not being compromised by the foundation soil settlements. The projected cost of the repairs represents less than one-tenth of one percent of the total cost of the project, and is considered relatively minor for a project of this size and scope.

SEMA performed its construction work in accordance with plans and specifications provided to SEMA by the city. All work was installed per those requirements, with quality control monitoring performed by SEMA, independent testing firms, the city’s consultant and city personnel. The project testing records demonstrate that all work complied with the plans and specifications.

Without becoming overly technical, the cracking and settlement is primarily due to the naturally occurring, long-term consolidation settlements of the Colorado River floodplain deposits underlying the bridge approach embankments constructed by SEMA. The city’s design anticipated some settlement in those floodplain deposits and addressed this issue through the use of gravel- filled piers. But the actual settlement being encountered in those deposits appears to be exceeding the design anticipations.  Since SEMA had no responsibility for the design of this project, the settlement issues are not the fault of SEMA Construction.

As one of the largest highway and heavy construction companies in the United States, SEMA stands behind the quality of its work.

THOMAS C. CLARK

Senior Vice President

SEMA Construction Inc.

Colorado Springs

Repeal of gay policy will create future problems

Allow me to offer a different perspective on The Daily Sentinel’s Dec. 21 editorial, based on my 30-odd years being associated with our military. I feel important aspects of this issue are being ignored by media.

Coverage about the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on gays in the military is a possible example of such reporting. This seems especially true of TV.

We’ve seen little of the straights’ side of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” question.

As a seaman at age 18 during World War II, looking about 14 and weighing 120 pounds, I found it necessary to draw a knife to discourage the advances of 180-pound-plus individuals on two occasions. I was not alone in such experiences. Why haven’t we heard more about such things?

Our military provides a vital part of the structure of our country and society. Because of its great importance to us, qualifications for acceptance into the military have always been and must continue to be high. This is apt to preclude many activities that are accepted or ignored for civilians.

Homosexuality is rooted in probably the most compelling of human motivators — lust — with all its potential for damaging good order and discipline.

The social engineering aspects of appeasing a minor portion of our population should not be reason enough to risk damaging the effectiveness of this most important part of our society. To promote good order and discipline, the military routinely requires that respect be demonstrated to superiors. It restricts an individual’s ability to come and go, how he or she may work and other things free civilians are allowed.

I’ve been privileged to know many military folks of a wide selection of ranks. With very few exceptions, those I have known who would prefer not to serve with openly gay personnel. Data showing how many and what skills might leave the military when this new policy becomes effective should be interesting as well as how many might choose not to begin a military career.

If we open the doors to openly gay individuals, why have separate baths for the two sexes? Looks like the same problem to me.

RAY LASHLEY

Grand Junction



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