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Letters to the Editor 11-8-17

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Some county codes do not fall into county purview

Dear Editor,

(A letter to the County Council:)

I missed out on completing the citizen survey of attitudes towards the above, but wanted to register my opinion before your meeting tomorrow.  I agree with comments that the recent code enforcement and county attitudes towards the code in general are over-reaching and excessive.  The power of the county to tell people what their houses and yard should look like is limited to health and safety issues only.

I also agree that the county code and related enforcement smacks of a homeowners’ association of private parties, and is not authorized by governmental powers. This is still the Wild West and we Westerners love it that way; people who want homeowner associations should move down to Tanoan or back to the East Coast.

While monster weeds and obstructive junk on curbs may fall within the realm of governmental regulation, peeling paint and the cosmetic appeal of yards is not health and safety related. The influence of real estate agents on the county council is also excessive and a conflict of interest, designed to line their own pockets through sales commissions rather than in support of public welfare.

In looking at the statistics of code enforcement in other jurisdictions, I would like to know the specific violations being counted, i.e., color of paint or peeling paint as opposed to weeds, and what size of weeds.

In my opinion, the current statistics for Los Alamos show over-enforcement of non-violations. County workers engaged in these activities should be re-assigned to properly authorized government work, and if there is none, perhaps the county needs less workers, which would save us all money.

Moreover, the discussions about requiring people to build structures to bear-proof their trash bins is ridiculous, and yet another example of the county’s overreaching. No one on my street has such a structure. All it takes is common sense to not put out bear-attractive trash until the morning of pickup. Neither my sister at another house on the street nor I have ever had a bear get into our trash, and our family has been here since 1957. This is more county over-regulation which would no doubt also require that a homeowner purchase an over-priced  county permit for such a structure for temporary bear issues. Bear intrusion may be a health and safety issue, but the county is required to propose the least intrusive remedies, not the most.

Thank you for the opportunity to comment.

Tina R. Sibbitt
Los Alamos

Bartlit hit nail on head with ‘fake news’ column

Dear Editor,

As usual, John Bartlit has hit the nail square on the head regarding identifying fake news. Unfortunately, newspapers themselves have been early contributors to the fake news trend.

Some years ago, I wrote a complaint to the Albuquerque Journal regarding the opinion columns that had started appearing on their front page. I had not been too concerned when they began appearing on page 3, but when the began to intrude on the most important (Page One!) news, it was clear that something in the newspaper ethos had changed, and not for the better.

After awhile, it became apparent that this change was viewed as necessary to prop up newspaper sales against cable and even broadcast news, as well as ‘the internet’. I hope that the Monitor will not find it necessary to succumb to this siren call, and note, with favor, that the Daily Post has moved all of its (submitted) opinions to a link rather than appearing on the opening webpage.

Terry Goldman
Los Alamos

Many in Los Alamos are against ACA, but many here depend on it

Dear Editor,

I have always said that the reason people here have so much money is because they never spend it.

They claim Medicare for all is socialized medicine. What do they think regular Medicare is?

I voted for Governor Martinez because she was one of only four Republican Governors who put in for expanded Medicaid. Now that she is a lame duck, she is opposed to the Affordable Care Act.

The lab was paying over $400 a month for my supplemental Medicare policy and a prescription plan.

I have the exact same BC&BS coverage as before for $200 a month.

Because of ACA, I qualify for Medicare Part D. I pay $20 a month because I am only on two generics. I get a 90-day supply of one of them for $11.23. When I picked it up the other day, I was given a coupon to use on groceries. The other one is $5.39 for a 90-day supply. Since Trump insists on repealing ACA before replacing it, I will be left with no drug coverage.

Every single person I know who complained about ACA is on Medicare. To paraphrase Marie Antoinette, “Let the people on ACA eat cake.”

I was published in Speakup on Thursday. “I no longer drive so I take LA Taxi from Los Alamos to the Santa Fe Depot. It costs $140 round trip, but it’s worth it. We have had a free bus system in Los Alamos for 10 years. The only people who ever complain about it are the people who never ride it.”

I’m embarrassed to live in a town that couldn’t raise enough money to build a Hospice.

What in the world good is that money going to do you if North Korea nukes us.

Camille Morrison
Los Alamos