Letters to the Editor, May 18

May 18, 2017

Wants something positive from 'concerned citizens'

I’m becoming concerned about the "concerned citizens” who contribute weekly rants in the Courier-Gazette. These diatribes are increasingly mean-spirited and divisive, and I have to wonder: where are they headed? These four concerned citizens who write the columns each week seem to be reaching such a fervid pitch lately that I fear they’ll blow a gasket.

Granted, the views espoused represent the “thinking" of the conservative political spectrum, and as such we should expect vitriol and bombast, I suppose, but since the conservatives now control the White House, the Senate and the Judiciary, why can’t these citizens be satisfied? They “won” the election, but it doesn’t seem to be enough. It seems that they can’t accept the fact that most of us don’t share their worldview and it really bugs them.

For years I’ve written responses to many of these columns, questioning why their dialog seems to be caustic and endlessly divisive… why use such dismissive language as “snowflakes” and “mindless juveniles” to discredit those who disagree with their conservative ideology? I’ve never received any sort of response or explanation and probably never will. I suppose the conservative talking points must go on unchallenged and unexplained, even in our small community.

I do wonder if these concerned citizens would describe a world they’d approve of? I’d like to read about their positive vision of the world for a change, rather than the endless sniping and griping we get each week. Perhaps if we all could define a mutually agreeable worldview with shared values and hopes, we could move forward and work to create a better tomorrow? It’s worth a try, citizens … are you concerned enough to try something positive?

John Shepard

Union

Raises questions about Rockland debts

Today I received a copy of the bad debts to be written off by the city of Rockland, which I understood to be in the area of $215,000. To my amazement, the actual amount is $546,219.14, a mere difference of only $331,000, plus or minus a few pennies. The breakdown is as follows in abbreviated form:

Rockland Police writeoff: $3,444.76

Solid Waste writ off: $178,672.56

Recreation Department writeoff: $342.26

Microloan program writeoff: $17,017.83

EMS:Camden First Aid Association writeoff: $334,162.35

Fish Pier writeoff:$10,625.09

small sundry others

Total Bad Debts: $546.219.14

We have been taken and misled by every city council, city manager and city attorney and any department head who did not follow up on the securing of these debts, collection of these debts and now after the taxpayers have either paid for, in our tax bills every year, the expenses incurred in all of these business transactions, or suffered from the loss of the income and now we find that we have been taken by our neighbors to the north at the Camden First Aid Association by not billing or collecting $334,000 worth of our work to businesses like Cafe Miranda, who received a loan and for which, even though we have a mortgage on their property, but we are going to write if off because they are in bankruptcy.

That $1,800 could have helped someone else. New England Fish Pier Co. took us for $5,494 and the Land Fill mismanagement cost us $49,615 and the other $127,872 because no one was collecting the fees, yet allowing the companies to continue the “sweetheart” quarry fill-up program. These are the signs of incompetence, mismanagement and total disregard by and including the various city councils over the years that failed to question the status quo.

Yes, I am a three-time loser, as I am reminded, in my efforts to run for City Council. But I can assure you these items were discussed by me many times and fell on deaf ears. As a former state auditor, accountant and member of the vocal minority, I wish people would someday wake up, smell the roses, and at last admit there is something wrong in the way we have done, and are doing business.

We need more ordinances like we need more “Little Dodges Mountain” developing at the dump. That is all it is, is a dump. It will cost us a fortune for allowing out-of-state demo, which I was surprised to see the seagulls eating, to haunt us for years with costly and questionable maintenance.

Dale Hayward

Rockland

Favors Minzy for Select Board

During her term on the Waldoboro Select Board, Jann Minzy has been a stalwart member as both the chair and vice chair, where she has proved her mettle. She sees things clearly and is not afraid to work hard for what she believes in.

Jann’s volunteer work in the community has gone beyond the Select Board. She is active in Medomak Arts, the business association and has served for more than seven years as a trustee of the library. She also chaired the library board. She has energy, commitment and great respect for the people of Waldoboro.

To quote Jann: “I raised four children on this little spot by the river. The Medomak was their playground; the community was their extended family. I owe much to my adopted community. I enjoy sharing my energy, experience and time, and am pleased that I am able to give back some of what I've received.”

Please join me in voting for Jann Minzy.

Betsy Wooster

Waldoboro

Doctor: Keep ACA protections

As a physician, practicing in Maine for years, the Affordable Care Act is of particular interest. I will say up front that I find the efforts to repeal and replace this program tragic. The ACA has been such a help to my patients, who can now come to the office for care, purchase the medicine and other treatments they need and generally know that they are protected.

The replacement proposals will not do this. They will not protect the basic health needs of Maine's women, children, ill and vulnerable.

We need to keep the ACA protections!

Dr. Stephanie Lash

Rockport

Trekkers says thanks for successful Trekkapalooza

On behalf of Trekkers, I extend my sincere appreciation to everyone who participated in our most recent fundraising event, “Trekkapalooza: Legends and Icons.” Legendary Trekkapalooza two-time winning bands Just Teachers and Chaos Sauce were invited back to the stage to pay tribute to musical icons the world lost in 2016. Playin’ Possum, a family quartet of musicians (playing folk, rock and bluegrass) and Anthony Marsh and Friends (with Anthony Marsh, Dave Butler, Jason Deane and Reagan Billingsley) rounded out the evening’s incredibly dynamic performances.

In addition, we had two Oceanside High School lip-sync teams, Mayonnaise Spreaders and Time to Relish, with congratulations going to Time to Relish for winning the most popular vote by audience applause! In true Trekkers’ style, a community of volunteers and dedicated supporters contributed to the success of this year’s event, with more than 200 attendees filling the seats of the Strand Theatre April 28.

Special thanks go to the Strand Theatre and its staff for the wonderful venue. Thank you to all the volunteers and student planning committee members for making everything run so smoothly and for jointly handling the emcee responsibilities for this year’s event. This year’s four student planning committee members included Nathan Hersom, Amber Johnston, Alex Mahar and Krista Butler. Senior and committee chair Nathan Hersom will hand the reins over to junior Amber Johnston next year. Thank you to Alex Barstow for designing this year’s Trekkapalooza logo, which we used on our event poster, T-shirts and program cover.

We wish to thank our generous sponsors. Our lead sponsors were Harbor Builders Associates and Horch Roofing. Our supporting sponsors were as follows: AJ Works; Athens Pizzeria; Atwood Lobster; Bar Harbor Bank & Trust; Bay Chiropractic Center; Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate – The Masiello Group; Blue Maple Systems; Brooks Trap Mill; E.L. Spear, Inc.; Epifanes NA Inc.; Fisher Engineering; Glen Cove Dental Associates; Granite Coast Orthodontics; Halls of Thomaston; Hanscom, Collins & Hall, P.A.; Harbor Road Veterinary Hospital; Hope Orchards; Jess’s Market; Lonza; Maine Coast Petroleum; Maritime Energy; Mid-Knight Auto Body; Midcoast Federal Credit Union; Midcoast Handyman Services; Monhegan Boat Line; Mr. Tire Company; Norman Assurance Associates; Rock Coast Plumbing & Heating; Strong Insurance Agency, Inc.; Superior Bait & Salt; and the Strand Theatre. We encourage everyone to support these wonderful area enterprises.

Of course, we want to thank everyone who attended the event itself. We are sincerely grateful to all of those who came to enjoy some great local music and a lip-sync competition, while raising money to support local students in the process.

We are already looking forward to next year’s event, when the community can come together again to enjoy this very special Trekkers evening.

Amie Hutchison

Executive Director

Trekkers Inc.

Thomaston

Comments (0)
If you wish to comment, please login.