It is Sunday night and I am watching CBS 60 minutes. The closing piece was about local newspapers. For a long-time I have enjoyed my local paper, wherever I lived. In a small county on Lake Champlain in Vermont, I was given a space to tell what was going on in Alburg, who passed away, who was born, where the evening games were and such.
But tonight I was given what many local newspapers were up against, and a wakeup of their importance.
The big papers in Seattle and Bellingham have lots of writers and massive Washington state and Washington, D.C., news we need to know, but we need to know about our town, the schools, the parks, the people who run them and what they do. The special events, the neighbors who passed away, the weather, the tides, activities of restaurants, and lists of how hard our police work.
Without this paper we are isolated from the world we see each day. I thank the newsmen and women who collect and photograph the important things we need to know each week.
Bette Bach Fineman
I have been following the saga of the planned Birch Bay Library over the last couple of years with mixed emotions as I like the idea of a community coming together and throwing their support behind something, especially when there is no formal “downtown” in Birch Bay, but I have wondered if a traditional library is the best project. And then I saw the comments from Linda Cain in last week’s edition and want to echo them as I feel that she reflects many of us in Birch Bay: “The extravagant plans for the library … If they wanted a community center, then that should have been on the ballot,” as well as it not being within walking distance of many residents and that we should not vote on this again.
We need to follow the will of the voters and move on from building a library, especially during this challenging time coming out of a pandemic, after the recent flooding and when many have lost their jobs at Intalco-Alcoa as well as at the small businesses that have closed over the last two years in the county.
Raising people’s taxes is not the right thing to do at this time nor is spending more money on another election nor the $6.5 million (especially the $1.1 million in design and admin fees) to build something that is dividing voters and that residents keep saying is not needed, at least not in this form and at this time.
We need to respect the will of voters and think more globally of what Birch Bay needs at this time and into the future.
Dann Mead Smith
A good night’s sleep is incredibly important to our health. Most of the time during midnight train crossings the engineer must activate the horn for safety per federal law. Horns are old technology and I am sure there are new alternative safety measures like motion detector alarms or cameras to notify train engineers if something or someone is at the rail.
Train engineers should pass crossings with very low speed and maybe blink lights to make sure it is clear to pass the road. During the day I have no objection to the use of train horns but from 10 p.m. till 6 a.m. no horn makes for a better night’s sleep. I read online the city of White Rock, B.C., has reached an agreement with BNSF to implement a quiet zone there. I also contacted BNSF and basically they say if community leaders like the mayor or city council request from BNSF, they will apply for a quiet zone for the city of Blaine. I am sure the majority of Blaine residents are against this horn at midnight and if their voices are heard, then hopefully this nice coastal border town would be quiet at night and more peaceful.
The litter and garbage has definitely gotten beyond just an occasional drink cup along I-5 between the Canadian border and Bellingham. We realize this is an interstate highway, but you surely don’t condone this mess and “kick the can down the road” as “not my job.”
Please do something we can all see and appreciate. Canadians are finally able to enter the U.S. again and are encountering a garbage dump along the highway. Surely there are resources to get this taken care of rather than condoning and looking away from this mess.
I am reaching out to lady golfers to inform them of the Loomis Trail Women’s Golf League at the Loomis Trail Golf Course in Blaine. The league runs April through September every Thursday starting at 10 a.m. on April 7.
We are a social league and offer friendly competitive games for those wishing to participate. We welcome all ladies to join our “free” league no matter what your golfing experience may be. In partnership with Loomis Trail Golf’s professional teaching staff, we provide monthly mini-clinics where beginners and low handicap players can advance and fine-tune their skills.
If interested, join us March 31 at 9:30 a.m., at the Loomis Trail Golf Course to welcome new players and preview events planned for the 2022 season. Please review golfloomis.com for directions to the golf course and call the Loomis Trail Golf Pro Shop at 360/332-1725 on how to contact me for additional information on what the league has to offer.
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