Printed letters, Jan. 6, 2011

Alley entrances could aid Main Street stores

There are a lot of mixed emotions, both from the public as well as affected businesses, about the upcoming construction on the east end of Main Street. City Councilman Gregg Palmer has it right. Rear entrances to businesses could make a big difference.

Many successful “business streets” around the country are alleys. Why not in Grand Junction, too?

Merchants in downtown have long overlooked the advantages of having an inviting, attractive, well-identified entrance to their businesses opening out on to what currently are unattractive alleys and — surprise, parking places.

There are few parking places in front of businesses on Main Street and that will still be the case after the construction is over. Why not transform the alleys into something more than service entrances and places for trash? Are city codes in place to allow — or encourage — such a thing?

Yes, there are costs involved, not just to make things inviting and attractive but for security from having to watch two entrances. But what is best: Lose a lot of business or spend a little to keep and improve current business levels?

Not only that, but this is an opportunity to transform local shopping habits, looking beyond the end of construction, that often revolve around complaints of limited parking in front of businesses on Main Street.

Finally, businesses have to determine why people aren’t using the parking garage everybody was screaming for before it was built. Could it have to do with the way you pay and also the fact that it opens out to a very unattractive alley? Some of the same “business rear entrance deficit?”

Mark Smith at Main Street Bagels also has it right. The glass is at least half full. But first you have to think that way and then take steps to fill it even further.


Grand Junction

Strong language was not necessary

The front page of the Lifestyle section of Jan. 2 had strong profane adjectives. It was in an article regarding a former drug addict’s transformation (good for her!) but the language used was appalling.

What was reporter Rachel Sauer thinking? As a mother of eight, foster parent and a newspaper customer, I would not want my younger children to come across this language in our home.

While I give applause to the young woman and to the telling of her courageous story, lowering the verbiage to tell it was unnecessary, uncreative and a poor journalistic choice.


Grand Junction

Where was GOP frugality during the Bush years?

The actions of congressional Republicans to be sure that every new government expense be neutralized by having a way to pay for it is really quite admirable.

One question: Where were all of these suddenly fiscally responsible lawmakers from 2001 through 2006, when then-President George W. Bush was fruitlessly and ineffectively throwing truckloads of our tax money at any problem (Iraq, Afghanistan, Katrina, etc.) that came along?

During that period, most of those same congressional Republicans, led by the then-free-spending Sen. Mitch McConnell and Rep. John Boehner, passed nearly every spending bill without questioning a single penny or having the vaguest thought of how to pay for it.



Congress only seems to care about themselves

I do not understand how any congressman can even entertain a proposal to repeal the Obama administration’s health care bill that will do away with the pre-existing condition provision, provide health care for 30 million-plus Americans who had none and provide health care cost savings over the long haul, according to the Congressional Budget Office, a nonpartisan organization.

At the same time, members guaranteeing themselves taxpayer-provided health care for the rest of their lives.

There is definitely something wrong with this picture. It appears to me the only jobs they care about at election time are their own, and the only health care they are concerned about is their own.




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