Union Democrat staff

Socializing of America

To the editor:

For those of you who are still lucky enough to have a job and don't have time to watch our Congress at work, let me enlighten you to some of the things they are contemplating.

First, apparently because people were complaining that they were passing bills without reading them. Rep. Henry Waxman, D-California, hired a speed reader to read the proposed Cap and Trade bill to them. Unfortunately, you couldn't understand a word he was saying and they were all laughing! Keep in mind that if this bill is passed, our utility bills will increase by a minimum of $150 a month.

Second, they are considering passing a Value Added Tax of 20 percent or 25 percent on everything we purchase. This on top of all the taxes we already pay.

Third, they want to pass socialized medicine which will cost over a trillion dollars. Where do you suppose they will get the cash for that?

President Obama has already taken control of some of the banks, some of the insurance companies and two of the Big Three auto companies. I don't know about you, but I think it is time we let our elected representatives know how we feel about the "socializing" of America. Call or write them today.

Dolores Kipp


Remove the fence

To the editor:

Jim Thomas, Tuolumne County airports director, was quoted (April 17, Union Democrat, Page A8) as saying, "After a series of deer and airplane collisions, a deer fence was erected around Pine Mountain Lake Airport in 2004. Since, there hasn't been a deer strike at the airport."

There have been at least four deer strikes at Pine Mountain Lake Airport since the erection of the fence. Deer jump over, go through and walk around the fence onto the runway. Once there, they are more difficult to herd off the runway due to the fence.

The electric fence is also a hazard to aviation because it lies within the runway obstacle free area (ROFA) that is required by the Federal Aviation Administration. To date three aircraft have been damaged by encounters with the fence.

My concerns: 1. That the fence does not protect aircraft from deer strikes. 2. That the fence itself is a hazard to aircraft, pilots, and passengers.

Tuolumne County risks liability: 1. Claims that the fence protects against deer strikes could be used against the county by a claimant who suffers a deer strike. 2. A party injured by an aircraft encounter with the fence could hold the county liable because the fence is in the ROFA, in non-compliance with FAA requirements.

I recommend the removal of the fence and pursuit of a humane thinning of the deer herd in the Groveland area to reduce it to a more ecologically balanced size. The proposed bill by State Senator Dave Cox, R-Fair Oaks, to give California airports the ability to remove, even (humanely) kill, wildlife around airports, is an excellent positive step.

Carol Simpson


Bookmobile support

To the editor:

I would like to voice my support for the Tuolumne County Library and in particular for the Bookmobile, which makes scheduled stops at certain locations in the area. Having paid property and sales taxes in the county for over 40 years, my primary benefit has been the library.

The Bookmobile, driven by Terry Hoffman, has saved me many trips to the county library and since she parks it by the Columbia Post Office, one trip will serve a dual purpose. She can also introduce books to the students leaving Columbia School. Terry, by knowing many readers, will suggest books that would be interesting to them. Today, I checked out two books that she recommended and I will read them this week.

A schedule of locations for the Bookmobile and hours of operation would be most helpful if published in The Union Democrat.

With the tight budget, it will be necessary to curtail certain services. However, a priority should be keeping the Tuolumne County Library services operating at a high level.

Claude Giles