Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for April 14

Support fire district annexation

While providing emergency services wasn’t my initial reason for running for Lacey City Council, it soon became one of the top three reasons. The trigger that propelled it as a critical issue was the possibility of paying extremely high taxes if Lacey left Fire District 3 and formed its own fire department.

I’m very glad we have moved away from that alternative.

Still, continuing to pay for a contract with Fire District 3 when our population stands to grow significantly in the next five years will most assuredly keep increasing our contract emergency services costs. What’s more, it will continue to go up without Lacey residents having the ability to vote for or against a levy rate increase. We can’t even vote for fire district commissioners.

By annexing the city of Lacey into Fire District 3, we will have a voice in our emergency service administration and costs. My husband and I are both retired and on fixed incomes. We want the best service that can be provided at a price we can afford. There’s security in knowing that fire districts can’t raise tax rates by more than 1 percent without voter approval.

Annexation would equalize costs between Lacey and district residents so the district can continue to provide excellent services. Residents who live in the existing fire district would benefit because their tax rate would go down slightly. They pay a higher rate than Lacey residents.

Please vote ‘Yes’ on Lacey’s annexation into Fire District 3. It makes sense.

CYNTHIA PRATT, Lacey City Council

War fuels insurgency

Tax time binds us. We’re in this together.

Regardless of our politics, we share the worries, hassles, surprises, fears, and frustrations. And just how was our money spent in 2009? For every one of our dollars, 33 cents went to current and past wars; 1 cent went to diplomacy and war prevention. Our common sense tells us war fuels insurgency. We also know that war creates jobs.

This insane and immoral cycle can and must be changed.

Yes, we need a defense budget in a world where there are some erratic and destructive people. But let’s re-examine our strategies for the still new millennia.

Let’s turn this ship around and create jobs (and we’ll need plenty of them) to do the deep work of creating a stable and just world (jobs required for clean water, agriculture, health, and education) and lower our taxes.

And if this sounds naive, let’s keep experimenting until we get it right. There are plenty of strategies out there to be tried. We are in this together.

BECKY LIEBMAN, Olympia

Catholic church thinks it is above law

I have had enough with the Catholic church’s response to child abuse by priests. The latest from a Vatican priest equating criticism of the Catholic church with anti-Semitism is just too much and shows the bizarre mindset of Catholic clergy.

The simple fact is that the Catholic church has harbored child molesters. They have provided a safe haven for sex offenders. These are not just church matters. The child molesters are criminals and should have been turned over to the police. Instead, the Catholic church protected these criminals from the police and civil authorities, transferring them across state lines and possibly between countries to avoid prosecution.

What amazes me in the entire dialogue within the Catholic church is that there is no mention of these child molesters as criminals or of the culpability of the church for harboring and protecting them. Also amazing to me is that there is so little effort by police and prosecutors to track down these child molesters and those that have aided and abetted them.

We see that people who helped cop killer Maurice Clemmons are being prosecuted for giving criminal assistance as he tried to escape capture.

Shouldn’t bishops and archbishops who actively protected and transferred known sex offenders be treated in the same manner under the law? The Catholic church thinks it is above the law. We need to show it that it is not.

MICHAEL RILEY, Olympia

Lawmakers nowhere to be found

My wife and I took the dog for a walk to the Capitol recently, and were struck by the lack of traffic or people.

No members of the Legislature to be seen. I thought they were in overtime at our expense? Then I noticed signs everywhere declaring no parking, assigned parking, tow away zone, violaters will be prosecuted. Then I figured out why no one was there. They want you to pay to park!

The conservatory is closed as is the visitor center. The flower beds and rose garden are empty. The Senate was empty. Where were they?

Most of us go to work by 8 a.m. for our paycheck. But I guess our leaders feel they are above all that as we left 10:30 yet still no one was about.

Let’s take those wasted tax dollars we spend on these leaders and put it to good use. Let’s find leaders that don’t hide behind signs, but moreover are open to the public, and listen instead of fighting like 2-year-olds.

Get up, get in, get it done and get out. Stop wasting our time and money. We already paid our taxes, don’t make us pay to park!

JOHN BUENZLI, Olympia

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