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OPINION

Letters to the Editor: Sept. 30, 2020

Mount Shasta Herald
Mt. Shasta Area residents may submit letters to the editor by emailing news@mtshastanews.com. Please include your name, address and phone number. Only your name and town will be printed.

Save views of Mt. Shasta

Comment letters are needed on a project that the County Planning Commission will decide on October 21, 2020. Bordering on I-5 just North of the Mt. Shasta City Limits, the project will adversely affect the excellent panoramic scenic views of Mt. Shasta. 

The proposed project would rezone more than 33 acres from Agriculture to Industrial and create a contractor’s yard which includes a concrete grinding residue washout basin, a storage area for the construction material, and truck and equipment parking. 

A project that included only pretty painted trucks would be one thing, but approval of this project means that concrete and other materials removed from roadways as part of the construction process will be stored and ground up on site. 

The county contends that because of the enormous size of Mt. Shasta and Black Butte, it would be virtually impossible to block views of these scenic resources from the project site. The project itself will block the panoramic vista views from passersby on I-5. 

Valuable tax dollars will have been wasted promoting Siskiyou County and its treasure, Mount Shasta. This part of the I-5 corridor will be changed from open space to a view of piles of concrete and other material removed from the freeways, concrete barriers, glare dangerous  to I-5 traffic from the lighting required to protect the expensive construction equipment, and, potentially, dust blowing across I-5 from the grinding up of concrete and  other materials. In other words, a bleak wasteland.  

Please help preserve the scenic views of Mt. Shasta. Comment letters as brief as saying, “Please save the Mount Shasta views,” and any comments you would like to add are appreciated. 

Please email the comments before Oct. 21 to Deputy Planning Director Kirk Skierski at kskierski@co.siskiyou.ca.us. Reference Southern Oregon Ready Mix Rezone (Z1804) Project.  

- Anne Marsh, Scott Valley

Water is precious

Referencing the article “McCloud ponders water company proposal” in your September 2, 2020 newspaper ... Water is a valuable resource and should never be taken for granted in Siskiyou County.

A water company might argue that water is a renewable resource; however, the water recharge rate must far outweigh the gallons of water being discharged from the available waer source(s) to maintain its availability, clarity and taste.

Community members don’t need to look too far for an example of a related water problem due to over pumping (e.g. Big Springs area in north County). If the McCloud Community Services District Board is considering a water bottling plant in the vicinity of McCloud (regardless of how well the water company markets its proposal), please consider the worst case scenarios (e.g. long term trout or significant warming which may not allow for an ample snowpack on Mt. Shasta) before entering into a legal binding contract.

In my opinion, the board must always maintain complete control of the amount of water being taken by a commercial water company based on local need. I believe the board must also maintain complete control to discontinue the sale of water toa bottling company in real time, while utilizing real time water recharge monitoring systems.

If the water company argues against this contractual condition, then they can respectfully look elsewhere to purchase water in California.

McCloud is known for its exceptional water, and if this precious resource is squandered away  due to a water company’s bottom line, I believe there would be a negative impact on the community, which includes local businesess.

- Doug Uhlik, McCloud

Who I’m voting for

It’s high time for some fresh air and new faces in Dunsmuir. The incumbents up for re-election: “Big Dave” Keisler, his buddy on the council Bruce Deutsch, and their old pal Treasurer Mario Rubino, have brought us nothing but a steady diet of utility rate increases and budget deficits. Oh, and don’t forget they propose sales tax increases practically every other year to cover for their financial mismanagement. If they dedicated as much time to solving our problems as they do arguing with constituents on Facebook we wouldn’t be in this financial mess.

The Community Pool was closed again this summer, defunded and written off as unessential. And Bruce Deutsch was the loudest voice on the council making sure kids couldn’t even have “Safe and Sane” fireworks on the 4th of July, despite no similar ban by surrounding cities or the county.

What’s it going to take to wake these incumbents up!? Answer: getting tossed out of office and reminded they work for us. Eight years in office is long enough for Big Dave, and five years of Bruce Deutsch seems like an eternity. It feels like Mario Rubino never left after being recalled in 2010.

When you get your ballot in the mail please vote for change in Dunsmuir and pick: Sandra Vaughan, Ahmet Tasci, and Dena Marlatt. They know Dunsmuir, they know business, and they know what’s happening. And also please don’t allow another tax increase, this time during a pandemic. Please vote no on Measure H!

P.S. By no means does this mean I don’t support re-electing kind-hearted, hard working, and thoughtful incumbents like Barbara Wagner in Mount Shasta, and Bob Hall and Sue Tavalero in Weed. They absolutely deserve to be re-elected.

- Leslie Wilde, Dunsmuir

Social Security in jeopardy

I read recently the results of an AARP survey that focused on Social Security benefits to seniors. It was reported that greater than 69 million, which is almost nine out of ten of those 65 and older, get Social Security Benefits.

But people are worried the Social Security (SS) Trust Fund could run out of money. Payroll taxes paid by workers and employers provide most of the SS Benefit programs and the loss of support would certainly impact the program negatively.

Mr. Trump has recently issued a temporary Executive Order to halt the payroll deduction. This is alarming. And his plan, if reelected in November, is to make the payroll tax cuts permanent.

Mr. LaMalfa has been a rubber stamp in Congress for the president, as his voting record shows. Can we think he’ll now stand up for Social Security and the program that supports it?

We have a candidate in Audrey Denney who will support issues important to Seniors and all North State residents. Every vote counts! Please vote for needed change in November, and vote for Audrey Denney for Congress. 

- Patricia Hardig, Yreka

Voting yes on L 

Put youth first, not cannabis. Vote yes on Measure L.

Measure L takes no jobs away and does not affect taxes. L regulates industrial cannabis businesses. L does not affect retail cannabis businesses which provide over 80% of cannabis tax revenue. L keeps existing industrial businesses and jobs, but prevents any further proliferation of industrial cannabis in our small town.

The City violated the state 600-foot buffer zone by licensing two cannabis businesses within 200 feet of Shady Creek Children’s Center. City regulations are not tightly controlled.

To accommodate the desires of industrial cannabis businesses, the City: Reduced the buffer zone designed to protect youth attending Sisson and other local schools by 25%; and

Manipulated how the buffer zone is measured around the Sisson and I AM schools by excluding large portions of school campuses. Measure L restores the 600-foot buffer zone.

The long-term future of industrial cannabis manufacturers depends on a steady stream of customers for generations to come. The way to attract those customers is to begin by making their products attractive to today’s youth. Just like the tobacco companies, industrial cannabis manufacturers adopt such practices as flavoring marijuana products to make the products more palatable and improve their taste. The “menthol cigarette” has been replaced by flavors such as “fruity,” “coffee,” “jasmine,” “mint” and “pistachio” along with dozens of other flavors and aromas. Edibles include things such as “sour watermelon gummies,” “Bubba Kush root beer” and “Orange Kush.” Right here in Mt. Shasta, high-THC concentrate edibles are manufactured as “lemon lime lozenges.” Similarly, the marketing images of tobacco companies have paved a path for today’s industrial cannabis manufacturers. The “Joe Camel” of old has given way to the “Reefreshers” of today, a product made in Mt. Shasta with illustrated product labels in the same candy style that appeals to young people.

See KeepCannabisAwayFromKids.com.

- Tom Scovill, Mount Shasta

No on most propositions

The State of California has several tax proposals on the ballot this election and I’m going to tell you why we should defeat them all. California has a budget deficit of $54 billion. Separate from that, it has a trillion dollars’ worth of unfunded pension liabilities. It also has 340,390 employees that make over $100,000. That’s $34 billion a year. Some of them make two or three times that every year. California’s State Universities are also a drain on the state’s checking account. UCLA’s football coach makes $3.3 million a year. In San Francisco, “Poop Patrol” workers get paid $184,000 a year each. California also spends $98.4 billion on welfare most of which goes to non-citizens. Most of this information is publicly accessible at “Open the Books.com.” After the research I and others have done on how the state spends our tax dollars, I recommend a no vote on any propositions on the November ballot that raise taxes for any purpose. California needs to show more restraint and intelligence when spending our tax dollars. If these tax proposals pass, the speed of the exodus from California will hit warp speed. Specially for businesses owners and manufacturing. These tax increases for business owners will absolutely kill our farmers in the state. Vote no on all the state propositions except 16 and 22.

- James Lowder, Dunsmuir

Youth before cannabis

Keep Cannabis Away from Kids, a nonpartisan committee, is sponsoring Measure L. Measure L is supported by a wide cross section of the community, from conservatives to liberals, from the religious to the civic minded, from business leaders to political leaders. See a partial list of over 70 endorsers at KeepCannabisAwayfromKids.com. 

Two city council candidates have endorsed Measure L, John Stackfleth and Betty Kreeger. 

Measure L regulates industrial cannabis businesses. Measure L takes no jobs away. Measure L does not affect cannabis taxes or retail businesses. Measure L prevents further expansion of industrial cannabis businesses in our small town. 

Please vote yes on Measure L.

- Bruce Clark, Mount Shasta

Stealing signs

Recently Ron Stock reported that someone had been stealing his signs.  Sign theft seems to be a favorite pastime of some this election. Or someone must be afraid of our candidacies for city council. At least 10 of my signs have been stolen in the past couple of weeks – some multiple times from the same locations.

Did you know? In most cases, sign theft is a misdemeanor, and the penalty is a fine and potentially up to a year in jail. But if you steal lots of signs, that can cross the line into grand larceny, which is a felony that will put you in state prison, as well as leaving you paying fines and restitution.

California Penal Code Section 490.2 (a) states:  “A person who takes, possesses, damages, reuses, or moves any political sign or signs without authorization from the owner of the sign or signs and with the intent to prevent, substantially alter, or substantially obscure the communication of the sign, is guilty of an infraction or a misdemeanor. Upon a second or subsequent conviction of a person under this section, the person shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars ($2,000), or both.

If a candidate’s supporters are so afraid of Ron Stock and me to go to the extreme measure of stealing our signs then our platforms must be really important to the citizens of Weed and Mount Shasta. 

- Betty Kreeger, Mount Shasta