Letters to the Editor

Sound-off 3/23/15

Cut first, schools

If the Granite City School Board wants us to give the district more money via a referendum, the board should show a sign of good faith first. Four administrative people who are retiring are all being replaced. Cut first and then ask for more money. Also, why does the tax have to be open-ended? Why not set an expiration date? Money is tight but I don't mind helping. I just want a good-faith effort on their part as well.

Watch for bicyclists

The nice weather is bringing out more bicyclists, competing for space on our roads. Drivers need to give them a wide berth. And they need to not veer across the center line and into my lane unexpectedly like one knucklehead did.

Bad place for ER

St. Elizabeth’s Hospital’s proposed site in O’Fallon is the wrong location. Have any of the members on the state health review board driven down Green Mount Road? Have many of the voting members been on Highway 50 near Green Mount Road or on the stretch from the Interstate 64 interschange to Frank Scott Parkway? It takes approximately 15 minutes to travel two miles on Green Mount Road. How are EMTs and other first responders going to transport people to the emergency room in a timely manner at the proposed location?

Fed up with regulars

The BND letters section has become the personal chat room for all the regulars. They all know who they are and believe me, all of us everyday readers know what they think. We've read it over and over again. We get it already, OK? The BND prints their back-and-forth and they can’t wait to pen their next boring, repetitive response. The first thing I do now before reading the letters is look at the names. That tells me which ones to ignore. I do enjoy the left-hand column (the BND opinion and the guest opinion) along with the cartoon; I read them every day. Why don’t all of the regulars meet somewhere and fight it out in person instead of in the newspaper? Blank space in the BND letters section would be better than the regulars.

Let’s hear from Clay

Will Racial Harmony explain why its recent panel event did not include Belleville Police Chief William Clay? Many people in Belleville, both black and white, are tired of police harassment and treatment. Most would agree that a Ferguson, Mo., event here is just one significant hassle away. As for U.S. Attorney Steve Wigginton, besides indictments of police, why is he not addressing political corruption?

A degree in debt

I get very tired of reports claiming college students only graduate with an average $20,000 debt – $5,000 times four years, the legal loan limit a student can get through the government in their name. That doesn’t mean the student isn’t in hock for thousands more co-signed by parents or in debt to their parents or depleting their parents’ bank accounts. The tuition prices for these colleges is so high, there is no way a part-time job can even help pay as they go, and I don’t believe that many students have that much money sitting in their bank account before going to college.

Politics and Parks

I was surprised at the outcome of East St. Louis mayoral candidate Emeka Jackson-Hicks’ appeal of incumbent Mayor Alvin Park’s signature shortcomings on his petition to run. I’m amazed that Hicks’ appeal was denied by the East St. Louis Board of Elections, the St. Clair County Circuit Court and later the Illinois Fifth District Court of Appeals before a unanimous (7-0) state Supreme Court took Parks’ name off the ballot. What does that say about the role of politics in Southern Illinois?

Out of our business

Can someone explain why a Madison County judge has interfered in a business opportunity in St. Clair County? This has to deal with the medical marijuana farm in East St. Louis. What business is it of Madison County what we do in St. Clair County? They need to clean up their own county before they go poking around elsewhere.

Enforce the codes

Code enforcement, or lack of, in Fairview Heights has long been a problem. Two aldermen who are up for re-election are supporters of little or no enforcement of any infractions. There have been letters about Aldermen Scott Greenwald having a large woodpile from his front door to the street. He obviously doesn’t care what an eyesore that creates in a neighborhood. And then there is Alderman Linda Arnold, who supports her neighbors on North Ruby, zoned residential, who have had rusted fixtures in their front yard as drinking troughs for wild animals. House prices for Fairview Heights seem to be dropping beyond neighboring communities. Any real estate agent will tell you that the biggest cause of declining values is the lack of code . These aldermen’s actions hurt every property owner. They should be voted out of office.

Editorial’s off base

I think the editorial March 14 about radio host Bob Romanik’s aquittal on a trespassing charge was totally wrong. This whole issue was not about poking political fun at St. Clair County Board Chairman Mark Kern, but about the constant vile, vulgar and nasty comments Romanik made on a daily basis about Erin Kern, his wife. On his radio show those comments were so nasty, this paper would not print them. Too many expletives. Romanik had no business taking pictures on the Kern property. How would the writer of this editorial feel listening to such nasty comments daily about her family members?

A frivolous case

The recent attempt to prosecute radio host Bob Romanik on a trespassing charge and him being acquitted by a jury in less than 10 minutes just goes to show how petty St. Clair County Board Chairman Mark Kern and this state’s attorney are. I would suggest that the people start a petition drive to get both these men to resign. They should be sued to recoup some of the taxpayers’ money that they spent on this trivial prosecution.

A cartoonist’s job

Editorial cartoonists are supposed take the news and give their view on it. Editorial cartoons are meant to stimulate discussions and ideas. In this county there are two sides. BND cartoonist Glenn McCoy gives his view, a view that is not always popular. People have a right to dislike his views. I love his views. He is doing his job perfectly.

In defense of McCoy

For Glenn McCoy haters: McCoy is the BND’s conservative cartoonist. He works in a major liberal area of Illinois. Of course some people are not going to like his work. Find a liberal cartoonist, there are millions, and read them. We have a right to like McCoy and to have his cartoons for our reading humor. He is spot on.

Cartoons are great

Glenn McCoy’s cartoons in the BND are great. They are the first thing I look for in the paper each day. They are funny, relative and truthful. They are not hateful. When you are a liberal, the truth really hurts. Keep ’em coming, Glenn; I like them.

Perk costs taxpayers

The story about Belleville changing employee rules after a city vehicle was seen outside the city limits states that numerous people who work for the city are allowed to take their vehicles home with them. When they do it for their personal use, do they reimburse the city for the mileage and wear and tear, or is it a free perk to those who work for the city, paid for by the taxpayers?

Police plan exists

I’m calling about the Sound-off March 16about Belleville aldermanic candidate Dorothy Meyer. The caller said he searched every available set of meeting minutes and could not find a record of her introducing a plan to create a citizens police academy. Check the minutes of the February Police and Fire Commission; she presented the plan at that meeting and it was also discussed at the March meeting.

Bigger type, please

Recently the words to the crossword puzzle were so small that in addition to my eyeglasses, I needed a magnifying glass. Please make it larger print. You are catering to senior citizens, you know.

No blight after all?

I love the letter from the former administer of Our Lady of the Snows Shrine pointing out the property to be privately developed is not easily flooded and that they built a huge facility on the property. That should just about change the TIF criteria and the blighted designation of the property. We are watching.

No need to burn

When I was young, I burned leaves. Now there are all kinds of ways to dispose of the leaves to avoid polluting the air. I’ve been doing it for 30 years. Try it. It works. Do not burn them.

Where were they?

I found the comments about Gov. Bruce Rauner and the state budget by state Sen. James Clayborne and state Rep. Jay Hoffman hypocritical, since those two are responsible for the deep debt we are in now.

Hotline’s no help

Our family, too, has had its share of woe with a family member in a local nursing home; she was the subject of abuse at the hands of a CNA. The problems started when we reported numerous incidents when our loved one was left for periods of time in soiled clothing. The administrator reprimanded the CNA for the problem and shortly thereafter the abuse began. When we questioned our loved one about what had happened, she would not tell us; she pleaded with us to not make waves. We also reported problems to the state’s nursing home hotline. What a joke that is.

Say ‘no’ to Triad

Attention, voters. The Triad School District wants more of our money. Of my $4,921 property taxes last year, $3,275 went to Triad. And now they want a bigger piece of the pie. Give me a break. It’s called management, folks. Get some. Voters must vote against this outrageous proposal on April 7.

The perfect project

I’ve noticed that the fire hydrants in Mascoutah need to be painted. I have an idea: With the permission of the Fire Department, perhaps a Girl Scout or Boy Scout troop could paint them as cartoon characters. It would be so kind if someone would donate the paint, too.

Poor use of taxes

St. Clair County Chairman Mark Kern, why should county taxpayers pay $1 million to 50 homeowners, $20,000 each, for them to paint their homes? This is wrong.

IRS follies

Isn’t it strange that when you make a mistake on your tax return and you owe more, almost immediately you get a notice that the payment was wrong, plus you have to pay interest. And the IRS can’t find all these tax cheats?

Bad court idea

Why are municipal courts allowed in the first place? With the revenue collected directly related, there is absolutely no way they can be fair and impartial. It’s getting harder each day to distinguish between the thugs and the politicians in regard to who is stealing our money.

Seeing red instead

I’m wondering why the BND would put “Irish eyes are smiling” on the front page with a woman wearing a red hoodie instead somebody wearing green for St. Patrick’s Day. I think your editors need to get a grip.