The State Journal encourages readers to submit letters to the editor for publication by noon Wednesday for the following Sunday’s paper. All letters must contain the writer’s full name, mailing address and telephone number for purposes of verification. The State Journal will not withhold the name of a writer. Any letter received without a mailing address and phone number will not be published. The State Journal will not publish thank-you letters, obvious form letters or letters addressed to third parties or to the public at large. Any letter may be rejected at editors’ discretion. All letters submitted for publication are subject to editing for length, form and content. Letters may be no more than 500 words long. Letters may be mailed to Letters to the Editor, The State Journal, 1216 Wilkinson Blvd., Frankfort, KY 40601; or e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
SCHOOL BOARD IS BIG ON TAXES
To the Editor:
I am disappointed and concerned with the members of the board and the leaders of the Frankfort Independent Schools for not having the knowledge to be able to function with monies they have available instead of raising our taxes again. Apparently they can’t or won’t find any other solutions to address a financial problem other than vote for more money. That is too easy because they know we want our children to get the best education available and no one has publicly complained in the past because it is a sensitive subject. People are unhappy and they do complain every year when they do this. I am sure they have heard these complaints but refuse to do nothing different. They raise the taxes because they can!
There are a lot of individuals and families who wish for a raise in their salaries so they could function easier but that hasn’t been an option for most of them in this economy. They have to find solutions for that problem. They do not need additional taxes from the FIS to make their conditions worse.
This method of operation is also what our leaders are teaching our children. If you encounter a problem, do not try to find a solution within. Let other people handle the burden and it will be okay. That sounds harsh but the result is same.
I think it is time to look at our leaders and/or board members and decide how we want to correct this problem. That is an option! I do not have the financial skills but I hope someone that does will decide to run for the board. This current headset should not be allowed to continue.
I also hope I am not the only one in Frankfort that will voice their opinion about this matter.
GET BEHIND LEGAL HEMP
To the Editor:
There are two bills coming up in January for our representatives to vote on and you need to let them know where you stand.
The first is sponsored by Sen. Perry Clark, to legalize medical marijuana. This herb can help cancer and glaucoma patients and so many more that, with research, the possibilities are unknown.
The second bill, HB286, lets farmers grow industrial hemp.
If you are a farmer and are looking for a way back to prosperity, let state Agriculture Commissioner James Comer know you support this. No jobs would be lost; police and DEA would be responsible for making sure crops are grown correctly, and that no ingredients are added to medical marijuana to keep people addicted like tobacco companies did. There would be taxes, licenses and prosperity. Companies would be built to turn industrial hemp into cloth, rope, paper, etc. If you want more information, contact Gatewood’s Army, or others already mentioned.
Let’s get off the Oxycontin train and get rid of the drug dealers.
Alcohol prohibition did not work, and marijuana prohibition is not working. Let’s put this herb to work in Kentucky. Research for your self before judging.
IN TRIBUTE TO MIKE HAYDON
To the Editor:
On the afternoon of Aug. 15, several hundred people crowded into the state Capitol rotunda to join in a memorial service and pay respects to Mike Haydon. Mike passed away suddenly at the age of 62 on Aug. 12 after having served in key executive and legislative positions in state government for most of the past 30 years, most recently as chief of staff to Gov. Steve Beshear.
The outpouring of kind words directed at Mike may have been more for the way he conducted himself than for those many things that he actually accomplished. Mike’s effectiveness and longevity as a public servant may serve as a much-needed reminder to all government leaders that placing the public good first and treating competing ideas with dignified respect and a smile is the best recipe for political success.
To all of those Kentuckians who join his family in mourning Mike’s loss I express deep appreciation for your friendship to Mike during his life and for your many acts of kindness and support since his death. As evidenced by the bipartisan crowd gathered at the Aug. 15 memorial service, Mike’s life can also serve as a challenge to all public officials to put partisan bickering aside in favor of an honest pursuit of the public’s interest.
Lisa J. Haydon
WHAT MATTERS, WHAT DOESN'T
To the Editor:
“Common sense is not very common,” said Voltaire. About 150 years later, the beloved Will Rogers opined, “Common sense ain’t common.” In 2012, politics and the electorate have reconfirmed the accuracy of their opinions.
According to Pew Research and other pollsters, 8 percent of likely voters will now decide who will be our next president.
Americans are killed in Afghanistan every week for no good reason, 23 million citizens unemployed, one of every six Americans in poverty, gasoline prices are approaching highway robbery and we are $16 trillion in debt. This list of significant red flags could continue for a whole page and then some.
Apparently, red flags do not matter to the 92 percent who have already made their presidential choice with two conventions, four debates and two months of campaigning yet to unfold. Given that fact, Bain Capital, tax returns, offshore accounts, condom inequality, stupid statements or blind allegiance to a political party must have influenced their decision. All those much-discussed topics offend common sense when compared with red flags.
For example, only one question should have ever been asked about Bain Capital. Did Romney do his job well there? His opponents have spent millions of dollars establishing his excellence at Bain Capital. He will bring that excellence to the Oval Office. There is no reason on earth to believe otherwise. That is just common sense.
The business acumen that enabled Romney to make enough money to store or invest some of it in offshore accounts is a personal asset, not a debit. He will bring that desperately needed acumen to the Oval Office and apply it on behalf of every citizen. There is no sane reason to believe otherwise. That is just common sense.
Do Romney’s offshore accounts reduce his tax burden? They do not, but if they did, so what? In early April of every year, millions of citizens burn the midnight oil looking for legitimate credits and other deductions, and they eagerly use them if their search is successful. Do onto others....
The tax returns of Mr. and Mrs. Romney are private. I do not want my next-door neighbor to see my tax return and I am certain they do not want me to see theirs. Do onto others...
That nonsense about holding presidential candidates to a higher standard doesn’t amount to a handful of pennies at the supper table. Moreover, candidates are human just like us. Do onto others...
In November, as they have repeatedly done in the past, the close-minded 92-percent will reelect the incumbents responsible for the atrocious mess in Washington. More specifically, they will reelect the incumbents who have grown potbellied, baldhead or gray-headed and filthy rich on Capitol Hill.
A word to the wise among the open-minded 8 percent. Cleanup of that atrocious mess must get underway in 2013. America cannot steadfastly withstand the ravaging of corrupt politicians and greedy profiteers much longer, and that is just plain old common sense!
CCU’s PENSION ROLE DISPUTED
To the Editor:
Is there any hope Kentucky legislators will change their way of thinking that rules apply to everyone but them? Is the latest report a case of “Monkey see, monkey do?”
News is Commonwealth Credit Union has not contributed to the KERS Retirement system in years because it’s not the employer. If CCU is the legal employer, back payments to the retirement system, if forced by court order, will affect the overall bottom line. If you are a CCU insider, you already know that.
Is the attitude of CCU board members like that of the state legislature? “Hold the retirement contributions until . . .”
A good bottom line is great support for the head of the corporation so a little here, a little there added makes the old bottom line look better, but only on paper. If the board does not recognize its debts to the retirement systems, then of course they would not be listed. CCU did not.
Depending on the outcome, this is very troubling to the future security of public employees, the ones who survive on state retirement. Chances are good the systems will not collapse but in the days ahead look for some big changes in the structure of the Kentucky Retirement Systems. The entire blame for the lack of adequate funding for the KRS is at the doorstep of the Kentucky General Assembly.
How the new structure for the retirement system is handled will certainly impact future employees. Employees paid their share into the retirement funds during their years of employment.
Where is our money?
Media reports say attempts regarding this news have not resulted in comments from CCU.
Jim Anderson Stivers
A FREE RIDE AT STATE EXPENSE
To the Editor:
We recently got another example of the way Kentucky government helps its taxpaying people when gas at Speedway suddenly went from $3.65 to $3.95. Station employees said they didn’t know the reason but were telling people it was the hurricane.
This is a regular event in Franklin County. I called the attorney general’s office, probably past quitting time. Same as usual, I left my number.
State government is going broke and still has thousands of vehicles. Some of the privileged have their gas, insurance and oil changes paid by the government. Never have to worry about when the tires need to be changed.
It’s about time for the governor to impose a moratorium on these vehicles for employees. It’s also time for the privileged ones to see how much it costs to live like those who just make ends meet. Maybe we would finally get a correct count on how many vehicles we have to support.
SHELTER DRIVE IS SUCCESSFUL
To the Editor:
I participated in a food and supply drive Aug. 18 to benefit the Franklin County Humane Society. Our drive was held at the Dollar General Store on Holmes Street.
The generous donations of Deanna Eastman, store manager, and her staff, as well as the Holmes Street community, made our drive a success.
The humane society appreciates their continued support.
A GREAT DAY FOR THE ARTS
I would like to congratulate the steering committee of Art in the Gardens for planning such a wonderful event. Liberty Hall garden was the perfect setting for such fine artists and crafts people. In addition, the live music, the boat rides and food all made for a really fun day! I hope to come back next year for another day of Art in the Gardens!
EVENT HELPS DOWNTOWN
To the Editor:
I hope you didn’t miss Art in the Gardens last weekend! The staff of Liberty Hall and hundreds of volunteers worked thousands of hours to create a premier fine craft and art show nestled in the lovely gardens behind Liberty Hall.
Two things made this event different from most craft shows that I’ve attended and there have been many over the past 24 years. First was the deliberate inclusion of downtown Frankfort. The organizers wanted the thousands of attendees to also explore the shops and restaurants downtown. And it worked. We spoke with many visitors in our store who had never been to our downtown. They were delighted by the experience.
The second difference was how the artists were treated. The majority of the artists that exhibited at Art in the Gardens also have work at Completely Kentucky and I received very candid feedback from them. Often when organizing a show, the emphasis is on the attendees and the exhibitors’ needs are sometimes missed. Not here. The artists I spoke with were very impressed with the professionalism of the organizers and their attention to detail. They were very pleased with the attendance and, of course, their sales. Congratulations to the organizers of Art in the Gardens at Liberty Hall for a very successful event for all of Frankfort.