Fire fee protesters now have a voice
I have a few questions concerning the fire fee/tax.
Did you, the readers, pay your fee under protest? I hope you were able to get a petition for redetermination, filled it out and mailed it to be received within the time frame we were allowed by the state.
When I got this notice to pay this fee last year — which caught me off guard — I called the State Board of Equalization. They were prepared for calls about this fee, as I was told to call Cal Fire and they gave me their phone number. I was also told that they just mail these notices and have no authority to make any judgments on my complaints and that I must file a complaint in the order of the petition for redetermination to Cal Fire.
I phoned Cal Fire and was told the same thing. So I paid my fee/tax and put “paid under protest” on it, filled out the petition and mailed it. I only had five days to get it to Cal Fire and I acted very fast. It made it in the time frame and was not late.
Sometime later, I received a reply from Cal Fire. It was of no surprise to me that my petition and letter were denied. Cal Fire told me they had no authority in making decisions, they were just the agency that receives the money. Were you told the same as me?
I then mailed copies of all of this to all of our senators, our representatives, AARP and the Howard Jarvis Tax Payers Association (HJTA). I received a form-letter type of response from them, stating that the senators and representatives handle the federal issues for the state and this was a state issue. AARP was similar, only they are working on Medicare issues only and Social Security.
Water is not the only rate or tax hike hitting us soon
I have to agree with the Sept. 26 Coastal Voices piece by Katherine Kelly, “Poor residents can’t pay more for water,” about the many low-income people in our community.
What wasn’t mentioned is the garbage rate hike, along with some sewer rate increases coming in the future, and a higher property tax for homeowners. Plus winter is coming and heating bills are going to go up.
People are being slammed from every angle. Separately, they don’t sound so bad, but adding them together spells disaster for so many people.
Even people who don’t live in poverty are living paycheck to paycheck and struggling to make ends meet. With all that’s being thrown at them, they could be part of that low-income group.
Is this what our city wants? To make us all poor?
Marsinah Murakami, Crescent City
New bicycle law could tie up traffic for miles
The Associated Press article, “Cyclists will get a 3-foot buffer under new law,” Sept. 28, has a statement that is not included in the lengthy description I got when researching the law on Google.
The article says regarding the proposal, “It states that if drivers cannot leave 3 feet of space, they must slow down and pass only when it would not endanger the cyclist’s safety.”
Right to bear arms older than recorded history
Just a note to add to Gerry Dooley’s amusement (“Second Amendment doesn’t fit our times,” Sept. 21). The right of people to defend themselves was not invented by the writers of our Constitution.
It is a basic natural human right (some would say God-given) that has existed from before the advent of recorded history.
Tyrants, of course, do not respect that right because they know a defenseless population is easy to control. (Remember how Hitler managed to kill 6 million people?)
Gerry says he is amused at the efforts of us “right-wingers” to preserve that right. I am confused by the “left-wingers’” efforts to destroy it.
Refusing the right of honest citizens to have guns will not prevent gun violence. In fact, an armed citizenry can often prevent violence. The bad guys are going to have and use guns no matter how many laws are passed. Making us honest law-abiding citizens defenseless will not prevent that.
Clif Shepard, Crescent City
Despicable that Obama siding with al-Qaeda
I invite anybody to show me exactly where I am wrong in thinking that America has plunged to the depths of depravity by not rising up in a tidal wave of anger and moral outrage over the most despicable act in the current political setting.
No, I am not referring to the criminal act of the Obama administration’s criminal gun-running activities in which hundreds of Mexican citizens were killed as were two Americans agents by those weapons in the hands of cartels. No indictments were forthcoming as we move on.
No, I’m not referring to Obama’s drone execution of an American citizen suspected of terrorist ties in the of circumvention of due process.
Again, I’m not writing of the outright execution of four Americans at Benghazi, Libya, and the absolute lack of accountability of that onerous event.
The singularity of any of those events dwarfs the simplistic and naive outrage of the Nixonian era of Watergate.
The act to which I refer and attach a scathing rebuke is the action of so-called President Obama in his arming and siding with our former mortal enemy, al Qaeda, which has irrefutable ties with the so-called Syrian rebels attempting to overthrow the dictator Bashar Assad.
The blood of patriots down through the ages rebukes the actions of the Obama administration, who, along with a significant number of the 112th Congress, have now placed us in a no-win involvement in the Syrian civil war.
How much more despicable does it get than that the current occupant of the White House, after 12 years of blood letting and countless billions of dollars fighting jihadist organizations including al Qaeda, now join in a blood oath pact with a former enemy to overthrow the leader of a country with whom we have no security interests?
The blood of our fallen warriors cries out for national indignation on a scale of historic proportion with Obama’s waiver of law prohibiting the supplying of arms to a designated enemy.
By waiving the law, the Arms Export Control Act, sec. 40 and 40a, he has sided squarely on the side of the “rebels”and demonstrated his vision of America’s national security being threatened by the al Basshar regime. This action is sedition on steroids.
Dale L. Bohling, Crescent City
City not playing fair in water rate increase
Thank you for quoting me accurately in the Sept. 19 article, “Water rate hike has it critics.”
Here’s what you didn’t address. I purchased the Water Department list of addresses from the city in 2007 when we attempted the first Prop. 218 protest against raising sewer rates. The list was incorrect and inaccurate. I asked for a refund of a corrected list. I received neither.
I also purchased the master control list in 2007 from the city. This included the parcel numbers. That list was incorrect and inaccurate. And, I purchased the county list of parcel numbers, which was outdated. Some property information was as much as 11 years outdated.
The sum total of all that was very clear. We were able to track down how fraud was committed by the city. It is for that reason we now want to double-check their numbers, names and addresses up front rather than after the fact. It is clear to us that the city wants to avoid providing that information because it allows the city to try to commit fraud once again.
It’s not about disclosing names and addresses of correctional officers or anyone in the peace keeping forces. That’s just silly and a distraction away from the real problems, which are that all ratepayers (owners of property or tenants whether or not they have their water included in their rent) have the constitutional right to protest increased taxes. This is called the Prop. 218 Protest Vote.
Call on Brown to veto unconstitutional gun bills
Recently, Colorado voters recalled two state senators responsible for forcing restrictive gun control measures onto law-abiding gun owners.
Our assemblyman, Wes Chesbro, has also voted in support of numerous gun control bills, including the onerous SB 374, which bans virtually all semi-automatic rifles and shotguns in California. Not only so-called “assault weapons,” but all semi-auto rifles and shotguns!
Chesbro also voted in support of restricting the purchase of handgun ammunition and the creation of a fingerprint database for all ammunition purchasers.
Under the Supreme Court’s Heller decision, these bills are blatantly unconstitutional. However, the gun-grabbers in Sacramento know that it will take years for the courts to rule on these matters. They are counting on eliminating these firearms before the courts can intercede.
Law-abiding gun owners must act now to protect their Second Amendment rights. SB 374 has been sent to Gov. Jerry Brown for signature. He has until Oct. 13 to veto the bill or it becomes law.
Bypass Last Chance Grade with bridge
I am writing in response to the recent letters concerning Last Chance Grade.
I would like to suggest putting in a bridge. Start back about one-eighth of a mile in both directions where the land is stable, come out over the ocean and bypass this unstable land.
Dorothy Heinisch, Crescent City
Criminals not held accountable here
Do you know the problem with this county? It is when someone steals something from someone else or breaks into a house or place of business and no one wants to press charges against these thieves.
Tsunami resistant, but what about rust?
Reading the Triplicate’s article on the tsunami upgrades of our harbor (“The harbor gets tougher,” Sept. 5) brought to mind an observation I made there.
Dutra Co. stored various parts in the yard all around the harbor and I noticed some hot dip galvanized weldments of varying shapes, apparently to be used on or under water.
One needs to know that weld spatter, the little droplets of metal and slack that happen to fall next to the weld seam, are only lightly fused to the base metal and are easily knocked off. If one galvanizes over them, in time rust will form under them or they will get knocked off and rust will start at that uncoated site.
Since the failure of a zinc coat is predictable, most companies would not accept improperly prepared weldments for galvanizing.
If memory serves right, in California, Caltrans has an industry-wide recognized specification for galvanizing of welded structures. It did not appear any effort was made to remove weld spatter on the weldments I saw.
So while our harbor may be tsunami-resistant, simple rust is a different matter.
Norbert Beising, Hiouchi
Can’t something be done to get buses to and from the college?
We need a city bus to go to the college and pick up at the college. Our son started college this year. He has to walk five or more blocks to college and back to the bus stop Monday through Thursday, carrying all his books in a backpack, and if it’s raining that will be a mess.
So is there anybody else out there who needs bus transportation to and from the college? So why don’t any buses go to the college and back? We really need this service. Can something be done about this situation?
Karen Leven, Smith River
Considering the consequences of a Last Chance Grade collapse
Mr. Kurt Stremberg’s recent Coastal Voices piece (“Find new route before economy devastated,” Aug. 22), reminded of this letter I started but hadn’t sent.
Summertime and the road work means waiting! For how many years have we been waiting for work on Last Chance Grade, Highway 101?
I don’t have to be an engineer to realize that there are some real problems necessitating yearly reconstruction, not lasting solutions. What happens when our rain, and winds, cause it to collapse again?
I’m not a pessimist, just a realist. How do people go in and out? How do supplies come in and out? How long will it take to repair again, if the hill is gone? Do we have to go around to Highway 299?
SHU inmates' advocates ought to be ashamed
Regarding the “Alliance for Global Justice” advertisement in the Aug. 31 edition, really? Stop the torture, huh? The “real” torture is the memories and anguish the victims and the families of the victims suffer every day as a result of the “tried and convicted” crimes these inmates perpetrated.
Why is it we seem to forget about that and give far too much attention to these predatory manipulators? These inmates keep referring to their conditions of captivity as “solitary confinement.” Really? They can have a cellmate if they qualify. They can have visitors. What’s solitary about that?
All this “hunger strike nonsense is ridiculous. These hunger strike participants are grown adults offered food three times a day with the option of purchasing additional food items from the state-managed “canteen” (store). If they don’t want to eat, so what! Don’t eat. If you starve yourself to death ... bye!
It’s disappointing and costly that “we” pay any attention at all to their “demands.” Really? Demands? They should be put back on “civilly dead” status, like they were many years ago. Imagine the millions and millions of dollars the state would save on frivolous court costs, appeals, lawsuits and abolishing all the other “rights” these criminals have acquired! If Gov. Brown truly wants to get California back in the “black” financially, this move alone would be a huge step in that direction.
In closing, the public needs to be better informed about why these SHU inmates are there. These SHU inmates have demonstrated that they cannot “program” in a general population setting and get along with the other inmates there. They are controlling, manipulating, violent predators who have been placed in the SHU for their documented continual non-compliance of the rules and regulations, and for the safety of the other inmates around them. These SHU inmates have “earned” their way into the SHU.