Letters to the Editor

Citizenship means voting

October 24, 2014 — 

Citizenship is hard, it requires sacrifice, service, education and a willingness to work for the greater good. You are required to understand issues you may not think affect you, and take a defensible position. Citizenship requires you to take action in times like we have now. Elected officials seem to care more about special interest and furthering individual careers than what is good for the nation.

The Founding Fathers believed citizenship was worth fighting and dying for. That it was a blessing to have the power in the hands of the people instead of a select few. The true power in a democracy is in the vote that each citizen possesses. This vote invokes the power of the people to keep government centered and working for all of us.

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Just a thought

October 24, 2014 — 

I’ve observed many references to breast cancer, including the latest “Dance performance honors a woman’s journey through breast cancer.”

I’m wondering if those kind souls with the pink ribbons or performances such as above referenced are unmindfully intending to remind women of the fearful journey that they have taken or to enlighten those women about the journey ahead. Does PTSD ever come to mind by these promoters of anguish?

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Victims want to be heard; Tice-Raskin will listen

October 24, 2014 — 

As parents of a murdered child, we believe that Robert Tice-Raskin has the right temperament, demeanor and experience for the courtroom.

We know firsthand that many victims are in a fragile emotional state when they are involved in criminal or civil court proceedings. And like us, many people do not understand the judicial process or fully comprehend what is happening. Victims want to be heard; everyone wants fairness and justice. Rob’s patience, listening skills, and genuine care about people are traits that we want in a judge. His broad experience and demonstrated commitment to thoughtful decision making and the rule of law are qualities that led every judge in Nevada County, sitting and retired, to endorse him.

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Just in: Kindness is contagious

October 24, 2014 — 

Nevada County, your response to and support of Anew Day’s First Annual RAKE (Random Acts of Kindness Event) was incredible! We appreciate your heartfelt participation in this very special and unique event. Together, we raised over $12,000 but more importantly, 200 participants poured over 750 hours of kindness into our community in one day!

Our RAKE teams completed over 30 assigned projects which included:

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To catch a thief

October 24, 2014 — 

Kudos, “Hannah” ... for catching a robber at Long Bottle Shop last week in Grass Valley.

Hannah, entering, was bumped by a man, arms full of stolen items. The owner of the store had been knocked down and shouted, “Stop him!” Hannah, in a dress and heels, ran after him, tackled him and held him for 10 minutes until five cop cars came. The cops wanted to arrest the owner first. They took five minutes to put rubber gloves on and then relieved Hannah. There were also seven-plus men in the store who did not help. That’s a woman. Kudos, Hannah (not her real name).

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Heroes emerge from the ashes

October 24, 2014 — 

Now that the ash from the Dog Bar fire has settled, we would like thank those who stopped to help us, Zeno and Erin Acton, Steve and Nick Piziali, and Larry and Lisa Battenfeld.

Friends and family, who prayed, called, and stopped by; it’s nice to know you are there for us.

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Tice-Raskin possesses a sense of fairness

October 24, 2014 — 

I would like to add my name to those who have written endorsement letters on behalf of Robert Tice-Raskin. The job of a rural Superior Court judge is very demanding. He or she should have a diverse legal background, including civil and criminal experience. Rural judges are not specialists; they handle all types of legal problems. Robert has had experience as a criminal prosecutor (19 years); a civil litigator (four years); and a pro-tem judge (seven years) handling many legal issues a regular judge will face. He doesn’t need on-the-job training.

Equally importantly, a rural judge should apply the law as those who write the law (legislators) intend it to be applied subject only to the restraints of the U.S. and California Constitutions. A judge needs to have the courage to do what is right regardless of public opinion or outcry. Robert’s experience prosecuting white collar criminals, who can often be powerful individuals, and my conversations with him lead me to believe he has the necessary courage.

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Shop locally? Not in this case

October 24, 2014 — 

To finish a knitting project, I needed one more skein of yarn, so I went to a local crafts store.

When the clerk rang it up I almost fainted! One six-ounce skein of Red Heart baby yarn was $5.99 plus tax, totalling $6.48. When I stood there aghast, the clerk laughingly said, “Oh, that’s cheap. We’ve got some yarn that’s $30 a skein.”

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Jerri Glover for city council

October 24, 2014 — 

I have a commercial space near Les Eva Field at Memorial Park, and have watched with admiration over the last several weeks as Grass Valley city council candidate Jerri Glover, her family, friends, and supporters have undertaken, and nearly completed now, the replacement and restoration of the decrepit wooden stands at the baseball diamond.

Kudos to Jerri for bringing together concerned citizens and generous business owners to revitalize and renew, at no cost to the City of Grass Valley, such an important hub of our community as Les Eva Field. I am proud to now have your campaign sign in my window, Jerri; your take-charge leadership is just what our city needs, and you definitely have my vote!

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A youth center: let’s do this!

October 24, 2014 — 

I wanted to thank you for the great coverage that was given to NEO. I was out of town for a few weeks and just recently got caught up with all my reading.

The story by Ivan Natividad was especially interesting because he touched on the fact that both Lynn Skrukrud and Halli Ellis went away to school but remained devoted to the cause. Both girls are graduating with degrees that could take them to other towns or cities to work yet they chose to come back to Nevada County and give back. This says a lot about these young ladies. Thank you, Reinette Senum and Stan Meckler, for the viewpoint that you gave.

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Soroptimists’ yard sale a success

October 24, 2014 — 

A big ‘thank you’ to Claudia Sharsmitt and the Saturday staff at Tri-Counties Bank, Sutton Way branch. On Oct. 4, we held our annual yard sale and it was a huge success. Allowing us to use your parking lot once again “made” the day! Many heartfelt thanks for helping us contribute to the health and well-being of women and children in our local community and around the world!

Lorraine Plagge, yard sale chair

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Yes on S

October 24, 2014 — 

I very much enjoyed The Union’s juxtaposition of the Measure S proposition arguments made by Don Bessee and Cheryl Bradley (Oct. 16).

After reading both, it seemed quite obvious to me that Mr. Bessee was oblivious to the reason Measure S is even on the ballot. His words were of a desperate nature. One would get the feeling that the evil’s of marijuana were overwhelming and invasive and that the quality of life here in Nevada County was destined to be crumbled if Measure S passes.

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Slade-Troutman and Meeks the best candidates

October 24, 2014 — 

My name is Penny Lucas and I live in South Nevada County.

I am a mother of three children. My youngest child struggled to fit in at school. She was unable to until she was enrolled in Sierra Montessori Academy. It was like she “came home.”

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Ann Driver for school board

October 24, 2014 — 

I have enjoyed the opportunity of working closely with Ann Driver, now running for the Penn Valley Union Elementary School District Board, as she and I served as officers of two local community organizations in Rough and Ready for the past 12 years.

I have greatly appreciated her ability to seek answers through thoughtful and valid questions; I value her ability to calm heated situations with logic and insight; she has demonstrated on many occasions her ability to think objectively and creatively; she thoroughly researches any task she takes on; and she has always been reliable … if she says she will do it — she will do it.

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Ebola czar?

October 24, 2014 — 

Appoint an Ebola czar? We already have one! I wonder if our president knows his own organization — or, whether he understands executive accountability!

We have Cabinet Secretary of Health and Human Services, Sylvia Mathews Burwell. Reporting to her, we have Director of Disease Control and Prevention, Thomas Frieden. Either they are not doing their job, and should be held accountable; or, they are doing their job and need additional support. Either way, a presidential czar appointment will only enlarge our government and create internal jealousies and conflict requiring the addition of yet another watchdog!

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Anna Ferguson for Nevada County Superior Judge

October 24, 2014 — 

Anna Ferguson has over 20 years of law experience in both civil and criminal cases and has served the last seven years as the Nevada County’s Assistant District Attorney. She has taken over 100 criminal cases to jury trial and in Nevada County alone she has tried cases that resulted in prison sentences mostly in drug related crimes.

Anna has been one of the strongest and most effective prosecutors in Nevada County. She has a determination to facilitate justice and has a strong belief in what is right. She is a woman of the highest integrity and I feel that she will bring a new freshness to the judicial system of Nevada County.

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Clean slate on Nov. 4

October 24, 2014 — 

I am running as part of a five person slate for the new Penn Valley Union Elementary School District Board of Education. Our slate comprises the incumbent board members who served on the vision committee, whose job was to consolidate the Pleasant Valley and Ready Springs School districts and guide the transition this summer of two school districts into one.

We are; Rob Moen, Tina Skrukrud, Nicole Van Vacas Gagnon, Carolyn Bronson and Debra Worth. This has not been an easy task and we are still in the formative period of establishing our new school district in a blended community. The five of us come from diverse backgrounds, but we all have the following goals in mind: the best possible education for the students, a safe and wholesome environment, strong support for our teachers, and an efficiently run school district. We have been unanimously endorsed by the Penn Valley Union Elementary Teachers.

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Heidi Hall a refreshing alternative

October 24, 2014 — 

I can give both Heidi Hall and her opponent credit for their up front honesty, but LaMalfa’s position on climate change (among others) leaves me baffled.

In Nevada City’s debate, he first stated that human activities had nothing to do with any climate change. He later qualified it to say, “Maybe just a little bit.” In attempting to minimize human contributions to CO2 releases, he stated that a single volcanic eruption spewed more CO2 than 10 years worth of L.A.’s auto emissions.

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Heidi Hall dedicated to the public good

October 24, 2014 — 

Heidi’s amazing! I knew congressional candidate Heidi Hall was good, but not how good. I knew Representative Doug LaMalfa was pretty lame, but not just how bad.

No wonder he is reluctant to attend debates. At the League of Women Voters’ forum held recently at the Nevada County supervisors’ chambers, Heidi mopped the floor with him. She does her homework; he parrots the party line. He just digs in his heels to paralyze Congress. What she lacks in legislative experience she more than makes up for in intelligence, eloquence, and passionate dedication to the public good.

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Unable to stream

October 24, 2014 — 

I enjoyed learning that the Nevada Union High School students recently had an opportunity to learn about the Internet Gigabit launch. Anxious to learn more, I went to TheUnion.com to see the video of the event and the students’ reactions. Unfortunately, I learned that I am one of the 50 percent of the homeowners unserved by internet access with reasonable speed — I was unable to stream the video to my computer.

Please hurry and implement this technology for the half of us who desperately need it!

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A dazzling concert

October 23, 2014 — 

What a treat! I’m still resonating from the Sept. 21 superb performance by the InConcert Sierra Orchestra, conducted by Ken Hardin. The program, billed as “Greatest Hits of Classical Music,” included such favorites as Johann Strauss, Jr.’s “Die Fledermaus,” and Gabriel Faure’s “Pavane.” As he introduced each piece, Hardin radiated his commitment to excellence, his sense of humor, and his deep benevolence. The musicians were world class. How did InConcert Sierra ever come up with the sponsorships to attract such artists? What a dazzling concert!

Carol Hoge

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Crime level not what sheriff depicts

October 23, 2014 — 

The Nevada County Sheriff’s Office and other police entities have huge responsibilities for enforcing the laws. Certainly they should have had input, advising on practical matters of enforcement.

But if the uniformed police also write the laws from A to Z, then we are two-thirds of the way to being a police state. I don’t think it is Sheriff Royal’s job to judge who is “unsavory” (his word). Is there a law against offending someone’s taste?

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Scottish referendum

October 23, 2014 — 

This may interest those of us who claim Scottish ancestry, as I do. Almost 2,000 years ago, the great Roman historian Gaius Suetonious Tranquillus told us that Rome sent immaculately dressed and disciplined soldiers comprising two legions north of Britannia to explore and survey unknown territory known today as Scotland.

They were horrified to discover — and reported back to their command — that all they could find was hordes of primitive naked men, covered with hair and paint, chasing wild animals with spears. The Romans wisely and immediately concluded that these “people” could never be civilized and as a result they wanted nothing to do with them (Scotch whiskey and golf had yet to be introduced). Result? Hadrians wall and the Antonine wall were built at once to keep the barbarians out of Britannia.

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Who will you vote for this November?

October 23, 2014 — 

In my opinion, one of the most important votes to cast is for Superior Court Judge. What other elected official’s decision has the ability to directly impact you, your family, and even your financial future and individual freedom?

If I ever find myself, or my friends and family ever find themselves face-to-face with a judge, I hope the judge has the knowledge, integrity, and impartiality I am confident Rob Tice-Raskin will bring to the bench. It has been said integrity is defined as one’s actions matching one’s values. Rob certainly exemplifies this definition. My family has known Rob and his family for nearly a decade. Whether as a sports team coach, community service organization leader, or simply a proud parent, Rob lives his ethics and values, energetically serving with patience and fairness.

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Thanks for triathlon support — see you next year

October 23, 2014 — 

The 49er Breakfast Rotary Club of Nevada City would like to once again thank SPD Markets, Flour Garden Bakery, BriarPatch Co-op and Save Mart Supermarkets for their generous donations of food, coffee and other refreshments for our hospitality booth at the Barbara Schmidt Millar Celebration of Life Women’s Triathlon.

Although the event was canceled due to smoke from the King Fire, that very difficult decision was not finally made and announced until the opening ceremony. Hundreds of participants, volunteers and spectators began gathering early that morning and stayed until after the announcement was made. Our donors’ generosity enabled us to provide some comfort to all those present during those emotional hours in difficult conditions.

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Tice-Raskin is caring, curious and committed

October 23, 2014 — 

As I understand it, all the judicial officers in Nevada County, active and retired, have endorsed Robert Tice-Raskin for judge. As one of those retired judges, here’s why I did.

Several months ago, Robert, who I had never met, called and said he would like to meet with me in order to ask my thoughts about our court system, to give me the chance to ask him anything I wanted, and also to just get to know him.

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Ann Driver in the driver’s seat

October 23, 2014 — 

This community should be proud and excited to have Ann Driver in the running for a position on the Penn Valley Union School Board. The ideas and prospective she shared at a recent introductory gathering was profoundly enlightening. Not only will children benefit with Ann on the board, but parents and neighbors will be happy their dollars are going toward good, sound education and not on the “fluff” we so often hear of.

I personally wish Ann the best of the best as she attempts to help build strength of character in our children and in our community.

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Support Measure S

October 23, 2014 — 

Measure S is a common sense solution to our current ordinance. This is a limited scope amendment to clarify and make it easier to comply.

I am reminded of prohibition, when unfair laws created a new generation of scofflaws. A “yes” vote on Measure S helps to keep fair laws and defines some important aspects for property owners and renters. Keeping things in line with codes means that legal changes can be made only by property owners.

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Nuisance abated

October 23, 2014 — 

Nevada County has been my home for the majority of my life, having moved here in 1983. We have a beautiful, serene parcel on acreage. Our longtime neighbor recently moved into town and rented his prior residence out to a tenant from Sacramento.

This newcomer proceeded to chainsaw trees and brush adjacent to our property line. When I questioned him, newcomer replied, “I’m going to build a gazebo.” The gazebo never materialized. But in came the marijuana plants, within 20 feet of where my grandchildren play.

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Home school your kids; vote ‘No’ on S

October 23, 2014 — 

I was invited to attend the Nevada County Board of Education meeting on Oct. 8. I walked out in 10 minutes because it became evident that the school as an institution in Nevada County is a dead end.

The only hope for the children and families living here to be trained to form a good, caring, responsible, strong and spiritual society is for parents to take care of their own and homeschool their children.

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