Letters to the Editor #4 Nesselhuf a poor choice
To the editor:
I am writing this letter to urge the voters of District 17 NOT to send B.J. Nesselhuf back to Pierre for a second term in the House. Though I like B.J. as a person, he is an ineffective state legislator. Aside from skipped committee meetings and Bacchanalian revelries, I have heard little of Nesselhuf�s accomplishments in Pierre. To send him back to a feeble minority would be a poor choice for District 17.
Nesselhuf is an ineffective member of the House. Where an older Democratic member may build credibility, B.J.�s youth and maturity fail him. The fact is that B.J.�s vote or opinion rarely counts among House members. District 17 would be much better served by a mature voice in the majority.
B.J. does not have the requisite education or real-world experience to be an effective legislator, and the other legislators know this. Like his two years in Pierre, his six or seven years in college have produced no real result. In addition, his opponents have had the experience of living and working in the district for longer than he has been alive.
Nesselhuf has a right to run for office and has even had two years to prove himself. However, the voters of District 17 have better choices available to them in this election.
Treat referral process fairly
To the editor:
Come on guys, play fair. Twice in the last two years I�ve signed a petition asking to refer a city council action concerning modernizing the four block stretch of Chestnut Street. (Everyone thinks it has to be improved, but there�s a big difference of opinion about how much should be spent in the process.) Both times I�ve ended up feeling like I�ve been disenfranchised by the city.
The first time, law professor/then alderman Frank Slagle�s arguments for accepting the petition sounded very persuasive, but the council rejected it, voting pretty much along the lines of how individuals felt about the issue itself.
Now the second petition referring the property condemnation is up for a vote, but the explanatory language says a vote against condemnation would �require the city to meet the demands of the land owners in order to obtain land needed to complete� the project. It would do no such thing. If the condemnation was defeated, the city could try to address the concerns raised by the adjacent neighborhood, it could ask the engineers to design alternate, less expensive plans, indeed it could do nothing for the time being.
The Chestnut controversy has always been about the cost and elaborateness of the plan, and how much it intrudes on the adjoining neighborhood. Citizens can only refer specific council actions. People signed both petitions because they wanted to see alternative plans developed, a position that a number of council members also held. The project�s design is an issue upon which reasonable people may disagree, but the assertion that there are no alternatives is almost never true in government deliberations, and certainly not when it comes to the design of a road.
The city attorney�s explanation takes up 41 lines on the ballot. At a minimum, to approach being fair and accurate, he could have added three words at the very end so that it read, � ? to complete the project as currently designed.�
The referral process is a bad way to run government. If we get to the point where enough people felt strongly enough to sign a petition to get something referred, the normal course of governance has let us down. But once referral petitions are signed, the process should be respected and treated more fairly than it has been recently in Vermillion.
Vote for Chestnut condemnation
To the editor:
We have heard a lot of comments from just a few of the landowners that oppose the current Chestnut Street improvement approved by the Vermillion City Council. We feel it is time to hear from other individuals that actually use Chestnut Street on a regular basis.
There are many farmers, businesses, home and landowners, commuters, and visitors to Vermillion that use Chestnut Street on a regular basis. We feel that safe, reliable transportation on Chestnut Street is crucial to our farms, businesses and homes.
It is a farm to market road for our farmers and the route for which to reach your retail businesses. It is the road used by service organizations crucial to us; utilities, fire and ambulance, and police protection. The opposing landowners are asking the residents to Vermillion to vote no on allowing the city to condemn the needed property to proceed with Chestnut Street.
We are not allowed to vote on this issue, but feel we have as much right to voice opinions on how the money for this project is spent. The funding for this project comes from a combination of state funds and the Vermillion second-penny sales tax. We contribute to the state funds just as much as Vermillion residents and we pay the second-penny sales tax on every item we purchase in Vermillion.
Although we contribute to the funds that will pay for this project, and we use Chestnut Street on a daily basis, we as rural residents are not allowed to vote on this issue.
We ask our �city cousins� (our family, friends, neighbors, and business owners that we frequent) to please vote yes to continue with the much needed improvements approved by your City Council.
Please vote �for� the proposal to move forward with condemnation procedures.
Ralph H. Westergaard
John J. Segil
Michael A. GoBell
John S. Donnely
Thune, Janklow will balance power
To the editor:
As we approach election day I find myself thinking more and more about the representatives we will send to Washington, DC from our state. We now have Tom (the stopper) Daschle in the Senate, acting like he alone is the third branch of government. He can stop nearly any bill dead in its tracks and with the help of liberal friends can stop judicial appointments if the nominees aren�t far enough to the left. A recent one was stopped on a party line vote reportedly because she let stand a law that 14-year-old girls need parents� permission before an abortion. Is this a �far right� law that is a danger to America? Her nomination won�t get to the Senate floor for debate and vote.
So why worry about Daschle when Johnson is on the ballot? Since their voting records are nearly identical it is like Daschle has two votes to stop legislation. Sure, Johnson reminds us that he voted for the Bush tax cut but that is an unusual vote that looked like a reelection ploy to me. They may not have many solutions but they sure can hold up legislation and judicial appointments. Please consider John Thune. I think his goals are more in line with what people in SD work for every day.
Then there�s Herseth versus Janklow. I heard Herseth say we need to revisit the Bush tax cut. Do we need a bright smile working to raise taxes and grow government? To a liberal, a government low on money is dangerous, while the public being low on money is acceptable. No, I�d rather have Janklow�s big mouth fighting to reduce the reach of government and reduce taxes.
I was recently sharing my concerns about who will represent us in DC and a friend reminded me that they won�t be representing us, they will be working for the agenda of the Sierra Club, stopping oil drilling, raising taxes, being sure 14-year-old girls can get secret abortions, and promoting other left wing ideas.
If we end up with Johnson and Herseth winning we could have the most far left representation of any state. Even the liberal coastal states send a few conservatives but we may not. Please think about what this would mean for the direction our government will go and vote for Thune and Janklow to balance the left wing power of Daschle and his friends.
Reedy cares about citizens
To the editor:
As we come to the end of this election season, I feel compelled to write about our local Senate race. We have two candidates who both claim to be working for the people of Clay and Turner counties: Sen. Joe Reedy and Rep. Judy Clark. Since both of these folks have a legislative record, it is very easy to see who really cares about the citizens in our communities. In the last session Judy was the deciding vote in the House to strip $3 million out of the department of education. Joe fought hard in the Senate to stop this. Who cares the most about our school kids? Joe Reedy.
Last year Judy was the deciding vote against the ethanol incentive fund, something that the state promised farmers would always be there for them. Again, Joe fought in the Senate for the funding. Who cares about our farmers? Joe Reedy.
In fact, as you go through the voting record it becomes very clear who works for us and who merely votes the party line. Now Judy says she wants to go to the Senate to keep doing what she has done in the House.
I say our farmers and our schools cannot afford that. I am voting for Joe Reedy because I care about our farmers and I care about our kids. I would encourage others who feel the same way to join me.