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We cannot eat money
Do Republicans breathe air?
Last week, the Republican-controlled House passed a bill to “expand oil drilling offshore and on federal lands and shelve new environmental rules for refineries” that “changes the Clean Air Act by requiring its regulations to be based primarily on economic impact, not health factors … (it’s not the Economic Protection Agency). Further, the Senate “defeated a Republican bid to nullify the Environmental Protection Agency’s first national curbs on air pollution from coal- and oil-fueled power plants.”
Do Republicans breathe money instead of air? Will they not quit until the Cuyahoga River catches fire again? What will they leave to their children, money or a healthy environment? They seek to muss not only their own nest, but everyone’s. If you vote Republican, this is what you are voting for.
“Only when the last tree has died and the last river been poisoned and the last fish been caught will we realize we cannot eat money.” — Cree proverb
Greg Scott

Tax hike for schools is badly needed
I am writing to address the question of whether 3A/3B are necessary to combat the budget crisis facing Jeffco Public Schools (e.g., $45 million budget cut in 2013-14). Mr. Tonsing, in a recent letter to the editor, provided the following alternatives to raising property taxes:
1. Have students clean classrooms — Kids ARE responsible for tidying up their classrooms. Regardless, janitors will always be needed in our schools to accomplish deep cleaning to combat illness-spreading germs.
2. Charge students who drive to school — They ARE charged via a permit.
3. Charge parents $2 a day if their child doesn’t ride the bus and chooses to drive — that is probably unreasonable considering parents of bused students are already charged $150 per year.
4. Increase ticket fees for school events and extracurricular activities — a possibility, but it would hardly make a dent in cutting $45 million.
I would like to give Mr. Tonsing kudos — he’s proposing solutions, which is more than I’ve heard from the vocal few who like to criticize the district and complain at board meetings. There are other solutions we can and should explore to combat the crisis, but in the short-term, our schools need relief now. Yes, 3A and 3B are necessary!
$37 a year is not a lot to ask to ensure our school district can continue to provide the quality education our children have come to expect and deserve.
Please visit www.supportjeffcoschools.com to learn how you can help with the mill/bond campaign.
Tina Gurdikian
Jefferson County