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Updated 3:46pm - Sep 2, 2014

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Coastal Voices: Feller ‘facts’ misleading on Sutter’s intentions

Another steering committee member has presented his reasons for concurrence with the Sutter Health-financed Camden Study conclusions (“Judge hospital facts for yourself,” July 3). Scott Feller is to be commended for his active participation on both the steering committee as well as his own research of available data from a variety of sources. Hopefully, we shall hear from the remaining committee members on the subject. It should be recalled that the steering committee was in unanimous concurrence with the recommendations of the Camden Group study even though key data was withheld from that study group.

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Coastal Voices: Country’s Biblical roots evident in history

In response to Linda Sutter’s diatribe of July 31 (“Fanatical agendas do not belong in board’s meetings”), her opening paragraph indicates how hateful her thinking is. Ms. Sutter apparently knows very little about our Founding Fathers’ view of religion, especially that found in our Bible. Our roots are deep in the Judeo-Christian faith. Let’s look at just a few examples.

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Coastal Voices: Prayer issue about due process, abuse of power

Judging from the hot level of public talk and print, I predict the issue of prayer before government meetings will continue to draw lots of attention in Del Norte County. Some in the community have accused me of grandstanding, lacking sincerity, becoming a divisive force on the Board of Supervisors, including a bevy of assorted catcalls one might not necessarily find on a Hallmark card. Others, many of whom I have never met, have embraced me as some sort of hero for standing firm on a number of issues. I am neither hero nor herald from hell. I would suspect the truth is somewhere in between. 

This commentary is not about prayer. It’s about process and it’s about power — attempting to implement one and curb the other. 

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Preserving a way of life for future generations

Our remaining small family farms are worth fighting for. It’s a way of life for many in Del Norte County and a stable income for 256 families, including mine. However, agriculture in Del Norte County has been in sharp decline over the past decade, in large part due to tightening regulations and competing economic forces outside our community’s control. As we look for ways to gain a competitive edge and stay in business, we look to support projects that will have meaningful and long-term economic impacts. One of those projects is Highway 199.

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Did you know: Outspoken supervisor livens up local politics

“I don’t give up.” 

If anything sums up the entire philosophy of Supervisor Roger Gitlin, that’s it. Elected just two years ago as county supervisor of District 1, he has been a lightning rod for a number of controversial issues. As a new supervisor, he says, he was expected to keep his mouth shut, get along and not make waves.

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Coastal Voices: Painting over mural was avoidable

I thought there might be more community outrage over the desecration of the student-painted mural at Crescent Elk. Then I reread the story (“Student mural is painted over,” July 26) and realized that if you believed the comments of Jeff Napier, you might believe the painting was warranted. It appears to me that Napier was either misinformed or flat out lying when he said that the stucco had already been compromised when the mural was painted, that the surface wasn’t prepared properly before the mural was painted and that the district wasn’t notified so maintenance could inspect the wall. 

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Coastal Voices: Klamath salmon facing major threat in drought

The drought of 2013–2014 didn’t sneak up on us. For the first half of the winter it simply didn’t rain. Sparse rains arrived late in the season and there was meager snowpack in the mountains. The Yurok Tribe and California Gov. Jerry Brown declared a major drought emergency. 

Water managers scrambled to figure out how to best allot a limited amount of Trinity River water, which flows into the Klamath, amongst many competing interests. Despite the knowledge that migrating Klamath salmon would be in peril from low flows when the fall run started, the Bureau of Reclamation sent an entire year’s worth of cold fish-sustaining flows from the Trinity to the Central Valley. The Yurok Tribe, and others, including the Hoopa Valley Tribe, sent letters to the agency warning that salmon will face a desperate situation by late summer — if preventative flow is not available. 

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Coastal Voices: Still a lot of work to keep fair alive

Like many of you, I am strongly supporting the “Save the Del Norte Fair” movement. We have been greeted with substantial enthusiasm for the effort, which will hopefully conclude with the successful passage of Measure F by voters in November.

But I do have some concerns. With all these early cheers for the Del Norte County Fair, a bit of complacency has drifted over the campaign.

Let’s be perfectly clear: It is going to take a lot of hard work by a lot of people to make sure the Del Norte County Fair and the Del Norte Fairgrounds stay open long into the future.

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Did you know: Report from the Wiens, now in living in Hawaii

Under the heading “Whatever happened to them?” is whatever happened to Richard and Laura Wiens. For you folks who may be reading the Triplicate for the first time, Richard was the editor and Laura was the Neighbors Page editor for many years until they left for sunnier shores in Honolulu some three months ago.

I caught up with Richard at lunch at a local IHOP Restaurant on Waikiki recently. Richard is now the managing editor of City Beat, an online-only newspaper based in Honolulu. He manages three editors and six reporters. The major focus of the paper is investigative reporting with an emphasis on government, politics and the environment. I asked him what the major difference was between an online newspaper and a print paper. He says that once a reporter makes a mistake in an article and the paper is printed, that’s it! There is no way to recall the error and make it right; it will be a part of that paper forever, whereas with the online newspaper, if a mistake is made, it can be corrected immediately.

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Coastal Voices: Tribute to great community as I retire

With heavy heart, I would like to take this opportunity to publicly bid farewell to the wonderful community of Crescent City, as I retire as the Police Chief on Thursday, having just completed four decades in law enforcement.

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