Dec. 10, 2020, Letters to the Editor
Politics dishonest even at local level
I am a retired mathematics teacher. I decided to run for commissioner as a community service. In the beginning, I didn’t know that a commissioner gets paid. I learned a lot about Douglas County and local politics in the process.
I convinced some truly conservative Republicans, and some very liberal Democrats to support my candidacy, just not enough of them to win. Campaigning during COVID was a difficult proposition. Getting name recognition was a daunting task.
The amount of misinformation spread about me and my campaign was frustrating. People that don’t know me, and never met me state the most ridiculous things. In spite of the fact that I’m my own largest donor, I was again accused of running a campaign sponsored by builders just last week. Could you please learn the facts, or just give it a rest?
I am an independent person who ran an independent campaign. It’s hypocritical to say that someone or some interest owns me. I convinced people to support me because of my honesty and integrity. I didn’t purposely make any false statements (my advertiser did stretch the truth once about who identified my opponents as RINOs, and I found out about it too late). I can’t say the same about my opposition.
Are there people who want to demand honesty in local politics? If you want to start a group that demands honesty from people in politics (at least locally), I’m in. Let’s get organized. If we don’t, the answer will always be that even on a local level, politics is dishonest.
Just trying to walk safely
On Dec. 4, my 82-year-old neighbor and friend Kerstin Wolle did what she often does: she went for a solitary hike on the Fay-Luther Trail. As she hiked up the steep, narrow part of the Grand View Loop, she came upon a man, probably in his 40s, with two hunting dogs. She saw that he was making no effort to move aside so that she could pass with a few feet of space between them, so she pulled her turtleneck over her face, put her head down, and hurried by. As she passed, he yelled at her. “Dumb lady! You must be one of those stupid liberals!”
Kerstin is well known in Douglas County as the president of the Carson Valley Trails Association for many years, beginning when the original Fay-Luther trail was the only one we had. It is because of her vision, love of nature, and tireless energy that we have the trails we now enjoy.
I have a few questions. First for the man who verbally attacked Kerstin: Are you proud of yourself? Do you feel good now? And for others in our community with similar views: Is this who you are? Really? Adults acting like belligerent teenagers, saying you won’t be “controlled” and “told what to do?” And to the Universe: What is wrong with people?
It’s Christmas time. Peace on Earth. Goodwill toward your neighbors. Kerstin said, when she finished telling me the story, “I won’t go there again.” This makes me beyond sad. For Christ’s sake, people. Find some peace in your hearts.
Sounds good … on the surface
As I was reading the Buckeye Farms Agrihood plan, I thought on the surface it sounds good. But there are areas of the plan that I have concerns.
Just who are you building for, locals or outsiders? Will the homes be priced at well over half a million? Mindens current median sold price is $423,000 far out of the reach of most families who live and work here. Same question to the Valley Knolls project at the north end of the county, who is that built for?
One must ask our elected officials that gave the green light for these projects, are you taking care of the residents who live and work here, or are you seeing housing projects as a way to generate more tax revenue and to gain right away for road construction?
Take a look at what has happened to the Reno and Sparks area. They are stuck in this mode of continuous build to try to compensate with new tax revenue to cover the cost of water, power, emergency personnel, roads, schools and many others items, but never breaks even. Taxpayers in Washoe County now are paying a “county debt” on their tax bill, this is before COVID. A 3 bedroom, 2 1/2 bath, 2,000 square foot home in Sparks is over $4,000 a year in property tax. At some point families will be taxed out of their homes. Yes, there is a demand for housing there, but you can’t please everyone at the expense of those who currently are residents. Young families will forever be renting, with little chance of owning a home.
Water is always a concern here. Most people don’t realize but the north end of Douglas County gets its water from Minden. I have to assume Valley Knolls will be using this water also. Is there enough?
What about traffic? The north end of the county gets so congested, just ask any emergency personnel about how often they respond to calls in the area. At least 20% of the traffic is coming from California on Hwy 88 and 395, this will continue to increase over the years.
Flooding will forever be an issue here. For those not familiar with the floods, you only have to look at the videos of the Douglas County flood of ’97, still online, and can see the damage it caused. Granted this doesn’t happen every year, but it does happen.
Growth is a natural part of all communities, but one must consider the current residents and how they will be impacted. Our county has a rich history of agriculture, and should continue to be a top priority. It would be tragic for future generations to see our county as what was, in a museum.