Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for Jan. 23

Time to consider temporary tax

I don’t want no stinking tax! Yet, I want schools to be warm, safe, learning places. I want roads and freeways to be smooth and fast. I want “Children of Hope” to be well cared for. Of course, as a retired senior citizen, I want your respect and attention to my needs. Yes, like so many others around me, I’d like everything for nothing.

Recently, I’ve been reading about Gov. Martin (1933 -1941), who initiated the sales tax at one percent at the depth of the Great Depression. “A penny for the Governor” was a slogan that helped lead us to recovery sooner than other states. I’m thinking a temporary or emergency income tax of “less than a penny for Gov. Chris Gregoire will erase this $2 billion shortfall. Perhaps 1/2 percent (.005) on less than $100,000 earned; (.007 percent) for those earning hundreds of thousands, and one percent for million-dollar earners.

While painful, this is a small sum, and unlike sales tax it can be a federal tax deduction. Remember, this is a temporary measure to erase the shortfall and speed the recovery.


Upper basin work is necessary

Several Chehalis River Basin Flood Authority members along with state and federal agency representatives shared their roles and concerns associated with Chehalis Basin flooding during the recent Trout Unlimited-sponsored Chehalis Basin flood control panel discussion.

Clearly, this distinguished panel has considerable work to do before they recommend one or more projects to mitigate the risks of increasing flooding within the Chehalis River Basin; the second largest river system in all of Washington state.

As expected, past, present and planned land use practices were discussed as leading causes associated with the loss of property and life during increasing Chehalis Basin floods.

Panel members discussed a variety of potential projects to reduce the effects of Chehalis Basin floods. Included are: instream water retention facilities, levees and existing wetlands and open areas.

Panel members agreed that there is no single solution to solve Chehalis Basin flooding issues.

Some favor engineered solutions, while others favor natural solutions.

It was very interesting that, when given the opportunity, the panel members opted not to address the restoration and protection of the steep slopes throughout the Upper Chehalis Basin. Many of these slopes failed during the recent flood events, sending trees, logs, rocks and soil into the streams and rivers below, leading to significant property damage throughout the Chehalis Basin.

Certainly, until these slopes are stabilized, their plants, rocks and soil will continue to slide into the streams and rivers, causing additional damage to residential and commercial property and to very important wildlife habitat.


Donation helps others to hear at meetings

Family Education and Support Services and the Kinship Support Program would like to acknowledge Robert Walker of Lacey and the Community Foundation of South Puget Sound for their generous donations toward the purchase of a much needed multiple user listening device.

The new listening device makes it possible for several group members to hear what is being said, and to participate in the support group conversations at each of the many weekly and bi-weekly meetings of the Kinship Support Groups serving Mason, Lewis and Thurston counties.

When Mr. Walker learned there were members of the community who had difficulty obtaining support and training simply because they could not hear; he corresponded with our agency by e-mail. Having sight and hearing disabilities of his own, he felt compelled to help. His compassion serves our hearing challenged members in a significant and critical way. A generous donation from the Community Foundation rounded off the balance of funds required to purchase the listening devise. Together, we worked to secure a device that would meet the needs of those we serve.

Family Education and Support Services provides a variety of family strengthening programs to the community. For more information; www.family educationandsupport.org

Shelly Willis, Family Education and Support Services and the Kinship Support Program