Letters to the Editor: January 5 - January 11, 2012

Published on Wed, Jan 4, 2012
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The Editor:

Really? Monthly wastewater rate increases for 2012? From $90.25 for a single family to now $99 in 2012?
I don’t know much but I do know this: Maybe if the city of Blaine would stop buying and building fancy million-dollar buildings, my family could afford to live in this town.
Wow! $100 for sewer! There are no words to describe this sort of fleecing.

Ron Mexico

The Editor:

I thought that WSDOT’s responsibility would be to the residents of Washington, but I was wrong. The WSDOT has taken away the northbound D Street off-ramp from SR543 and made it a NEXUS lane.
Now when the traffic backs up, we as residents and workers of Blaine and especially the people who live on D Street cannot get home without going out of our way. It would have been nice if WSDOT would have put up a sign at the D Street off ramp that read “No Border Access” instead of making it another highway lane.
It appears that the needs of the residents of Blaine are not important.

Howard Woods    
(Ed. note: Local non-NEXUS traffic is still able to access D Street via the off-ramp.)

The Editor:

Your article in the December 22 issue of The Northern Light about the NEXUS lane change at the northbound truck crossing, indicates no impact for general travelers. However, I can foresee the mad chaos it is going to create for duty-free shoppers trying to get back to the NEXUS lane from the duty-free shops. Could this be to discourage duty-free shopping?

Laurence Walmsley
New Westminster, B.C.

The Editor:

About a year ago, a random gathering of local musicians met at the Blaine Gardeners Market. They formed the Marketeers Band and later adopted names such as the Polka Pirates and the Cross Border Accordions. Since that fateful day, the accordion jug band has played at senior centers, nursing homes, community festivals, club meetings and at local businesses. They have brought smiles to the faces of shut-ins, seniors, children and the general community, and they have donated hundreds of dollars to food banks from Bellingham to Blaine. So many thanks to Judy (Captain Pepper) Kizer, Allie Ryser, Tommie Ryser, Sandy Brewer and Cathy Taggett. The band’s goal is to have fun and meet nice people, so if you have a community event that needs music, please contact Ron Snyder at 360/332-8082.

Ron Snyder

The Editor:

Does anyone know why the city annexed the property east of Blaine into the city in the first place? I heard a man wanted to build a golf course back in the ’80s. Somehow Ken Hertz (former mayor of Bellingham) was able to buy it for a subdivision. After some years, red tape, eminent domain and hurting the “little guy” seem to be holding up this ill-planned, “after idea.” First the city was going to rip up H Street, then they go after Mr. Martin’s property, and now I see city manager Gary Tomsic “expressed regret the city ever annexed the east Blaine area in the first place.”
Too bad there are no instant replays for this council. Sounds like the old days when referees refused to reverse poor decisions.
Why can’t the council reverse this ill-conceived idea? Why must Blaine expand east? Yes, I know the water is to the west but what about all the other empty land already in the city limits? What about the old airport? And what about all the houses already for sale? I am surprised that I have not been reading letters to the editor from local realtors trying to sell the existing homes for people moving away to find jobs elsewhere.
There are more little guys (other than Mr. Martin) who will be damaged, having to pay more taxes and being forced to bear the heavier traffic load. In the beginning Ken Hertz (Blossom Development Co.) offered about 500 homes, then it was 800, and at last count was over 1,000. That’s a lot of traffic. That’s a lot of water running down the hills off of house tops and pavement.
Who is going to buy these homes? There are no jobs. Are these potential buyers going to Lynden and Bellingham to work and spend their money?
Check the facts. I know that The Northern Light was present at the meetings when Hertz and company were trying to sell this project to the community. (By they way – we were against it.) The Northern Light was present when the former city manager (now gone) told us that we had no choice, “if Ken Hertz did not develop, then someone else would.”
My last question: When is a service not a service? The answer: When it’s the IRS or the elected officials of Blaine.
So reverse your bad call. Blaine is a small town and destined to be one. Adding a steakhouse and a few curio shops will not change things. This problem can be solved with a little thought – very little thought.

Ray Manthano

The Editor:

A quick background story. I sent my kids to the post office to get the mail and walk off some energy. To the post office and then home. Sometime later they arrived home and had lunch. The day went on and it was time to go to the store for some last minute things. My youngest one who I had left in charge of my keys was asked to relinquish my keys. After going around and around we reached the conclusion they were lost. The following day we retraced their steps. Their trip consisted of the post office, the city Christmas tree, Bank of America, the skate park and the grassy field of Lincoln Park. Ahhh! The better part of the day and a lot of quality time yielded negative results.
A week has passed and a kind gentleman found the keys at the post office and returned them to the Blaine Police station. To the good Samaritan, Blaine PD, and all involved … thank you.
Forever grateful,

C. Davidson

The Editor:

While doing some last-minute shopping at RiteAid in Blaine on December 23 around noon, my husband was approached by a good Samaritan. This gentlemen let him know that a lady hit his blue Chevy pickup in the parking lot and then took off. He took down her license plate number. To the gentleman: Thank you! You are truly a good person and remind us that good people still exist. To the hit and run lady: What you did is illegal, immoral and downright rude. You can sit there with your guilt and wonder if we’ll turn you in! You remind us that we’re surrounded by idiots, and you and your ilk are directly responsible for the cynicism so many people carry these days. Merry Christmas.

Brenda Bowles

 The Editor:

As fiscally conservative voters, it is with much thought and concern that we appeal to you to vote in favor of the levy and bond measures that will be on your February 12 ballot.
As parents of a freshman at Blaine High School, we’ve had the opportunity to see the dedication of the administration and the faculty on a daily basis, regardless of the budget constraints and shortfalls.
Voting to increase your taxes is not a popular idea in these economically difficult times, but the simple facts are clear – there is not enough money to do what is right for our students.
The proposed maintenance and operations levy is a four-year measure that will provide 24 percent of the overall operational needs of the district. The measure will replace the existing levy.
The proposed $3 million bond initiative would provide students with much needed updates in lighting and heating for their classrooms and work areas. Approval of this bond would provide for security camera upgrades that are essential for our students’ continued safety. Currently, special needs students are being served in a converted locker room space in the old gym facility. The passage of this measure would provide for transition of students programs into their prospective schools. These needs cannot continue to go unmet. Providing students with a well lit, warm and safe environment is what we expect as a basic responsibility of our schools. However, this can’t happen without your vote.
The needs of students are always the first priority of the administration and staff of the Blaine school district. Please vote in favor of the administration and staff of the Blaine school district. Please vote in favor of the proposed levy and bond initiatives on February 12, 2012. Our students need your help. Thank you.

James and Gina McShane
Birch Bay

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The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank you letters are limited to five individuals or groups. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.

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