Read the fine print; vote yes on 6
The road repair and accountability act of 2018 title is in error. If you read the 48 pages of text, SB-1 gives California one of the highest gas taxes in the nation at .7382 cents per gallon; only Pennsylvania is higher. The money does not all go to road and bridge repairs. For example, according to the bill, each year:
▪ $25 million freeway service patrol program.
▪ $7 million to UC and Cal State University.
▪ $70.6 million pay loans from transportation fund.
▪ $30 million for advanced mitigation.
▪ $80 million for parks, off-road vehicle and boating.
▪ $30 million for high-priority freight corridors.
▪ Creates a new “independent office of audits and investigation.”
The vehicle registration fee is used for “transportation improvement fee.” The $25 to $175 goes for transit and intercity rail capital program. Not counting inflation caused by this bill, how many miles of roads will the above fix?
Linton Wollen, Merced
Shane Smith best for school board
Shane Smith is an excellent candidate for the Area 1 seat on the Merced City School District Board. As the parent of a student, he has been involved in the Parent-Teacher Clubs for Peterson and Burbank schools and on the redistricting commission. He has advocated for creative approaches to improving student achievement, affordable after-school programs and the return of students to Camp Green Meadows.
Shane is open minded and eager to listen to parents and educators. He has a clear understanding about the organization of the district, including finances and board member responsibilities. He is committed to be a positive and active board team member working to create the best possible education for all district students. He has our votes.
Lee and Ann Andersen, Merced
Kids get all of Shane’s attention
When I served on the Merced City School District Board of Education in the 1980s, my board colleagues were, primarily, local business owners and parents who were deeply involved in the community. It was second nature for us to reflect Merced’s values in our decisions affecting all the children in our schools. My good friend, Shane Smith, represents a return to that way of governing our schools. He is a parent and an accomplished professional who has rolled up his sleeves to make Merced a better place through philanthropy and community involvement.
Shane understands that children are not just our schools’ most important constituency, but their only constituency. He recognizes that science, arts and language should never lose out to standardized testing. Join me in voting for Shane Smith to the Merced City School District Board of Education.
Sandee Boese, Merced
McClintock’s views are dangerous
Wildfires are getting bigger, stronger and more frequent. Six of the most destructive wildfires in California’s history have occurred in just the past 10 months. Ninety-seven percent of the world’s scientists agree the major cause of increased fires is global warming. Our Congressman, Tom McClintock, doesn’t believe them. He is a climate-change denier. McClintock insists that “the climate has been changing for 4 1/2 billion years. The extent to which human activity has a role to play is being hotly debated right now.”
Meanwhile, as the floods, fires and hurricanes keep getting worse, the USA is the only nation to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement and the fight against global warming. Time is running out. Challenging McClintock for his seat is Democrat candidate Jessica Morse. She says: “Forest fires don’t ask whether you are a Republican or Democrat, they impact the entire community all the same. Whether it’s drought, fire prevention, or 120 million trees dying in the forest, or renewable energy … McClintock’s still arguing about whether climate change is real.” Vote for change now, before the fire reaches our doorsteps.
Charles Benner, Grass Valley
Increasing violence Trump’s fault
What is happening to our country and political leaders? There is so much division it is now turning into violence. There will always be differences in political viewpoints, but violence is not the answer. The rhetoric of the president and his sycophants are the main reason for these violent acts. His attacks on the media as the “enemy of the people” is truly disgusting. It is his demeanor and his lies that riles up his base.
It is apparent the Republican Party is now the party of Trump as the majority of the GOP acquiesce to whatever the president says. Though the president stated political violence has no place in the United States, I guarantee that the president will revert to his old ways and blame the media and any American who does not agree with his politics. President Kennedy once said the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.
David Rodriguez, Planada
Trump puts us on a slippery slope
Conservatives seem to think it would be a good idea that certain professional sports figures should be fired for not assuming a certain position when the national anthem is played, because the president says so. OK, let’s change the laws to reflect that idea. Now remember that the act of saluting the U.S. flag, or standing at attention for the national anthem, is a form of worship.
So your employer is now able to require you to worship at work, any faith of their choosing and in a manner of their choosing. Think about it; how many “Christian” faiths are there? Who is to say which one(s) will be allowed. It is a very slippery slope upon which the president wants to embark, a nation run by religious zealots. And it might not be a faith of your choosing.
David Garcia, Merced