Letters to the Editor

June 15, 2014

Ron Loewe: Public comments bothersome

First, is it coincidental that this decision to reduce the allotted minutes for public comment from five minutes to three minutes comes on the heels of other articles stating that some speakers had been investigated because they exercised their First Amendment rights? Secondly, will I now be investigated for raising concerns about the abuse of power by our elected officials and law enforcement?

Public comments bothersome

The Merced Sun-Star article “Public’s time to comment reduced” (Page A1, June 7) compels me to ask two rhetorical questions.

First, is it coincidental that this decision to reduce the allotted minutes for public comment from five minutes to three minutes comes on the heels of other articles stating that some speakers had been investigated because they exercised their First Amendment rights? Secondly, will I now be investigated for raising concerns about the abuse of power by our elected officials and law enforcement?

Supervisor Jerry O’Banion may have revealed more than he wanted to reveal about how our supervisors value our comments when he tried to justify his shaky logic for reducing the open forum time. He stated, “I want to accommodate them, but I also want to get on with the county business of the meeting.” Aren’t the concerns of his constituents an important facet of “county business”?

The previous articles concerning the attitudes and behavior of our supervisors indicate that open forum comments are unimportant and bothersome. If they are frustrated by our concerns, why did they make all those campaign promises? Oh, yeah, I forgot, it’s the perks.

Ron Loewe, Atwater

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