Letters to the Editor for February 17, 2014

Union Democrat staff

Water transport

To the Editor:

Is there anyone out there that could have acquaintances and/or ideas of how someone could manage to transport a big chunk of the ice and snow from the East to us, here, in the West? It appears from the news coverage that there are massive amounts of snow (and ice) being dumped all over the middle, north and south of the country.

It just plain seems a killer-waste, that all that water could not be front/end-loaded into trucks and brought out here to us! We have water treatment capabilities to clean-up the received goods.

Philadelphia is on the brink of having its biggest snow year (top five), since they started recording those levels. And, how about Georgia and the Carolinas'? I'm sure others have had the same thoughts. I just wish I had an idea of how to make it happen!

Wally George

Jamestown

Enrollment decline

To the Editor:

There is some truth to Dennis Spisak's arguments against school district unification (Feb. 11), but he fails to mention the 800 pound gorilla in the unification debate: declining enrollment. As stated in a recent Union Democrat article, county wide school enrollment has been declining for the last 15 years, and is likely to continue declining.

The practical manifestation of this decline has been: school closures and consolidation (unification?) of student bodies and personnel, and the redeploying of administrative workforces. Over the last 10 years there has been an ongoing cycle of combining principals' and superintendents' jobs into one, or splitting superintendents' duties between several school districts. Indeed, this is now the norm.

So schools have been organically unifying one job at a time out of financial necessity. This process will continue as enrollment continues to shrink. The question is: do we keep unifying in a piecemeal process, or do we structure and organize it with a vote for unification?

Another consideration is the loss of local control with the creation of one seven member board of education, as opposed to the numerous boards we now have. Is the current local control a good or a bad thing? Look at any of the numerous school controversies and shenanigans of the last five years and ask yourself if they would be better or worse, more or less likely, under one central school board. Better yet, attend some board meetings and ask yourself the same questions. My take is that a centralized board would be less "responsive," and that's a good thing.

Opponents to unification are spreading a lot of Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt by saying this or that "may" happen. Unification has been going on for 10 years. It's time for the organizational structure to reflect the reality.

Scot Turner

Sonora

Good thinking

To the Editor:

I would like to nominate Robert Carabas, of Sonora, to run against the poorly informed Tom McClintock. His letter on Thursday ("Equality is the enemy of privilege") is the kind of thinking this country seems to have forgotten - and desperately needs.

William Bergmann

Murphys

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