Coyote Run cuts hurt OV's most vulnerable
Any time a town cuts its budget, citizens lose. The proposed cut to our Coyote Run transportation system is particularly heart-wrenching because it eliminates or reduces service for many of our handicapped and senior citizens, those least capable of speaking and fending for themselves — our most disenfranchised citizens.
Allegedly, the cuts are directly due to loss of state funding. Having long relied on the state to take care of these special citizens, the plan now is to place reliance for their care on Pima County. One wonders when Oro Valley is going to stand up and take care of these citizens itself. Apparently not now.
One must agree that the cuts make sense in the context of the bottom line. But, recently it was revealed that Oro Valley has far above the recommended amounts across its various reserve funds.
It is obvious that, in years prior, had the excess of these funds been invested wisely in reducing reliance on outside funds for its special programs, Coyote Run may not be in the trouble it is today. Hoarding money for a rainy day is smart under any circumstances. But when reserve money becomes excessive and when it is already "raining" for many town citizens across the budget, it is time for the town to step forward and fix the problem.
Any society is judged by how it treats its weakest citizen. After Oro Valley finalizes its cut to Coyote Run, I don't think it will be judged to be very special anymore.
Terry Thompson, Oro Valley
This time, Emil was at least half correct
Far rightwinger Emil Franzi exceeded his average in his June 2 column where he was half correct.
He was correct that the Republican Party (the Party of "No") is pushing out all moderates. He cites the Tea Party as a prime factor in this regard, but incorrectly calls that movement a reawakening of our country's founding principles. That movement is nothing about our country's founding principles beyond its namesake and the waving of revolution-era flags.
Franzi would apparently like for his readers to forget that he himself is a component of the same far-right putsch he criticizes; "squishy" and "wobbly" having been his preferred pejoratives for moderate Republicans. But Franzi is his usual self when he writes that the Democratic Party long ago purged all conservative Jeffersonians. He offers no factual basis for this claim, which is his wont, and tries to carry the point home with cheap insinuation, questioning whether Democrats still hold any Jefferson-Jackson Day dinners.
Now, some facts.
The two recent House votes on the health care reform and clean energy acts serve to show how the Democratic Party is still broadly based. The first measure passed the House with 219 Democrats voting yes and 34 no; the second passed with 211 Democrats voting yes and 44 no. The fact that dozens of conservative Democrats would go against the liberal and moderate coalition of their party and their Democratic president is remarkable and belies Franzi's assertion.
And by the way, Democrats in at least 17 states and the District of Columbia have Jefferson-Jackson Day dinners: AK, AR, CN, CO, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KY, MA, MD, MI, NC, NY, VA, WV and DC.
Grant Winston, Marana
No summer trip to San Diego
This letter was addressed to San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders — Ed.
I just wanted to let you know that this morning I can canceled my annual August vacation to San Diego in response to your actions regarding the recently passed Arizona illegal immigrant legislation.
Any area that does not support upholding the laws of our land is certainly not a safe place to visit nor worthy of my financial support.
I will be urging everyone I know to do likewise.
Don Cox, Oro Valley
Obvious path; let Estonians catch up in U.S.
I have viewed with interest the debate over the merits of SB 1070, and I am astonished that people do not see the obvious solution.
Seventy percent of illegal aliens do not vote Democratic, that's a myth; but 70 percent do vote Republican — it's just that they're all Estonian. So, what I propose is that illegal immigration from Mexico be stopped, until illegal Estonian immigration can catch up.
Here's how it would work. We could use military C-130 cargo aircraft in a kind of Berlin airlift operation. The Estonians would be flown to an airbase in Canada and bused to the border, where they will be allowed to sneak across. Once across the border, the same buses would pick them up and take them to the Estonian sanctuary city of their choice. There they would be given free food, shelter, medical care, a monthly stipend, and their kids would immediately be enrolled in the local school systems.
Of course, all government documents and most signage would have to be converted to English-Estonian, but that would be a small price.
In return, our culture would be immeasurably enriched. I have no doubt that the hearts of all citizens — of whatever race, creed, color or national origin — will quicken when they see the blue, black and white flag of Estonia waved by our welcome guests; while they are getting smashed on A. Le Coq beer, and complaining about our repressive, discriminatory laws.
But keep in mind that this is merely a temporary solution. It will only last until the number of rock-ribbed Republican-Estonian voters can match the 15 million Democrat-Hispanic voters that are already here.
According to Department of Defense information, a C-130 can carry 92 passengers. Therefore, the program will end a mere 130,435 round-trip flights from now.
The only real problem I can see with this plan is that the number of illegal Hispanics in the U.S. is 10 times greater than the entire population of Estonia; but of what relevance is that kind of niggling detail when your heart's in the right place.
Tom Grundner, Tucson
Change city's charter, enter 21st century
To exercise power responsibly, our city leaders need accountability. Without it, we see breakdowns in resource use, strategy implementation and constituent service.
With public input over many months, the Tucson Charter Change Coalition has formulated recommendations for city charter changes. One important change would eliminate civil service protection for all department heads and assistant department heads, and have all department heads report to the city manager. To be accountable, the city manager needs to be able to hire and fire his / her staff without city council approval.
Yes, ensure ongoing consultation between the city manager and council. Mayor and council can fire the city manager and hold the manager accountable.
The city council will consider this and other recommendations in June. Let's bring more accountability to our city government so that it can effectively lead Tucson into the 21st century.
Glenn A. McCreedy, Tucson
His vile name- calling further divides America
One week Emil Franzi claims that Democrats "are quick to hurl epithets and usually avoid substantive debate" and that "they blow gaskets" over people with whom they disagree.
Yet it is Mr. Franzi who is the hurler of epithets and the blower of gaskets.
In his previous column (May 19), he smears his opponents as "paranoid and muddled ." He says they make an "irrational belching" and that they conduct "slimy personal attacks." He refers to them as a "cluster of harpies … who drip venom."
Mr. Franzi's vile name-calling does nothing to advance informed discussion and intelligent discourse. It merely creates unthinking, close-minded factions and further divides America.
Doug Sanders, Tucson