Union Democrat staff

Vote for Torchia

To the Editor,

Domenic Torchia is the best person for the job as Tuolumne County Supervisor for District 5!

He truly is a fiscally conservative candidate who will always put the needs of our County residents first!

Domenic understands the needs of this County in regards to public safety, education for all, retaining and attracting new business, keeping our historic parks open without raising taxes, and, protecting vital County run senior programs!

There will be no backroom deals with Domenic Torchia! Domenic believes in full transparency, and, accountability to the taxpayers!

You will know what you are paying for with your tax dollars! He will prioritize spending with putting tax dollars where they are most needed.

You can count on Domenic! Domenic has been our neighbor in Columbia for several years, and, the more I learn about him, the more I like and respect him! He is a tough, outspoken guy who is very sensitive to the needs of this County, and, its residents!

Domenic is a very sincere person who honestly cares about Tuolumne County! Vote for Domenic. He is the best!

Paula A. Fears


O'Neil, Measure C

To the Editor,

I guess Supervisor candidate Jim O'Neil is the only candidate running in the 5th District who understands the ramifications of not passing Measure C on the June ballot.

Due to state budget, cuts both Railtown 1897 and the Mother Lode Fairgrounds have lost their financial support from the State of California.

Although the Fairgrounds are not yet threatened with closure, our Railtown 1897 State Park is scheduled to be closed after June 30th.

If you doubt that this will happen you only need to look at those State Parks in both Northern and Southern California which are already beginning to close.

With the ever worsening deficits just announced by the Governor, he made it clear that Parks scheduled for closure will not be given a reprieve!

Measure "C" will extend the visitor tax to include RV Parks and campgrounds, not just hotels, motels, B&B's, vacation rentals and resorts.

The Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to allow this measure to go on the ballot and they have consistently voiced support for Railtown and the Mother Lode Fairgrounds.

It seems that 2 or 3 RV Parks in the Columbia area have launched this opposition. How sad that they don't realize that losing Railtown and the Mother Lode Fairgrounds will not only harm their business, but all tourism related businesses in Tuolumne County.

Thank you Jim O'Neil for having the courage to speak out on behalf of these priceless tourism attractions and for understanding the reality of what we stand to lose.

Robert Campbell


Praising our youth

To the Editor,

I enjoyed last week's coverage of the Amgen event. Great photos and stories! I would like to have seen a little more information on some of then local students who helped make Sonora's hosting successful.

Sonora High School's Golden Regiment Band provided music. This band can be compared with university bands and always makes Sonora look good when we have a parade or celebration.

Summerville High School's Jazz@8 a cappella vocal group sang "The Star Spangled Banner" as part of the ceremonies. When you consider the size of the community and the size of the Summerville School, this is an amazing group of young people. This is the same group that was selected to sing for the lighting of the Christmas tree at the nation's capital, sing at the White House and Library of Congress last December.

This community has many admirable, dedicated young people who deserve recognition.

Lowell Kraft


Vote for Measure C

To the Editor,

Back in 1987, I started the Sonora Celtic Faire. The fairground facility in Sonora was the perfect place to hold such an event. With the popularity of jousting in recent years, the arena has proven to be the venue to watch this new sport. When National Geographic Television came to Sonora to film "Knights of Mayhem" last year, they felt that the arena was just what they needed to combine action shots with crowd applause.

As an event promoter, when you see over 4,000 people watching a sport like jousting in your hometown, what a thrill! And the bigger thrill was to know that there were another 4,000 attendees walking throughout the rest of the grounds at the same time. Many events like the Celtic Faire take place over multiple days, so attendance numbers increase over 10,000. Over 65 percent of the people who come to the Celtic Faire are from outside Tuolumne County. This means that the spin off to other businesses in Tuolumne County is incredible.

Motels, RV parks, restaurants, gas stations, markets, and mom and pop shops all profit from big events like the Celtic Faire. With so many events taking place over the calendar year at our local fairgrounds, think about all the revenues that would be lost if the gates were closed. When I moved the Celtic Faire for a brief time years ago to Angels Camp, Tuolumne County lost thousands of tourist dollars to Calaveras.

If we lose all the events that take place at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds, the county could lose millions of tourist dollars over the year. Let's all vote for Measure C and keep our fairgrounds open so we can continue to enjoy the many events that take place there!

Patrick Michael Karnahan