Worried the $1.4 million for roads won’t be enough

My name is Wiley Dowler and I’m a resident of Whitman County. I’m writing in regard to the July 30 article concerning the raising of the regular roads tax levy for 2020.

I’m concerned that the new tax-levy increase will not be enough to combat the deterioration of our rural roads. I live on a dirt road south of Albion, and over the last three years I’ve noticed that the road has gotten worse and worse.

According to the article and the information provided by the Whitman County Department of Public Works, the levy will only provide an annual increase of $1.4 million annually. The current spending on Whitman County roads is $19,116,800 according to the Whitman County 2019 Adopted Budget.

I’m skeptical that $1.4 million will make much of a difference considering how bad the roads are right now, and if the increase will be worth it at all. I understand that $300,000 will go to buying more gravel for roads, but that seems to be a temporary fix to a longstanding issue. I believe that more money should be routed into our roadway infrastructure so that way they can be overhauled more effectively.

Wiley Dowler



Wrong time to be spraying weeds on the highway, IDOT

On July 30, my wife and I were driving east from Moscow towards Troy on Highway 8. At about Lenville Road, we were hit by a strong smell of 2,4-D-type herbicide. I said, “Most farmers are too smart and too frugal to be spraying weeds this time of year. Must be IDOT.”

The smell continued to get stronger the farther east we traveled. Sure enough, about a half mile east of Troy we fell in behind the “bumper truck” and ahead of it was the spray truck dousing the roadside with a high mounted shower spray head. (I feel really sorry for the person in the bumper truck who has to breathe that stuff all day.)

Most of the “weeds” along the roadsides have already set seed and are dying, as they are annuals. The only “green” weeds were prickly lettuce, not a particularly troublesome annual weed. Proper spray time was at least a month ago when plants were actively growing. The herbicide will have zero effect on the already produced seeds.

In addition, high air temperatures volitize the product quickly, causing it to become even less effective. Anyone growing grapes or hops nearby would probably see some damage from drift. When traveling that same route today, we could still smell the herbicide.

I suspect this is one of those situations where “If we don’t use it, we don’t get as much next year.” A total waste of money and not very good for the environment, much less the lungs for those forced to follow the spray truck.

Sometimes I think the IDOT is missing an ‘i’ in the middle.

Gerry Queener



Scouts valuable for boys and girls -- together

My name is Henry Roberts and I’m a Cub Scout in Moscow. Recently, my Scout troop has added girls to our program. I read an opinion article in the Daily News saying boys and girls should not be together in Boy Scouts of America. And I disagree. The writer stated several reasons, but I have a few arguments.

1. The writer is right about one thing. Boy and Girl Scouts were designed to help scouts grow into better people. But the BSA also has really included girls in activities and programs, helping them grow into better people.

2. Clearly, the writer has never attended a BSA meeting. Girls can be in charge! Moms and other women can be den leaders, too!

3. Also, adding girls builds us up. It helps strengthen our community by adding more people and gives everybody new ideas and new experiences.

Henry Roberts



Most want to work hard, make life better for families

Sandra Weeks’ letter of July 24 was wrong on so many levels that I feel compelled to respond.

It is the job of representatives to represent the people who elected them, not to rubber stamp the opinions of the president. To suggest that they should be deported for doing their jobs shows a dislike of the American system and a desire to live in a dictatorship. Perhaps Trump and his followers should find such a country to move to themselves.

The right wing certainly did not make President Clinton or Obama’s jobs easy.

Trump’s supporters seem to get all bent out of shape that anyone should dare criticize him when every time Trump opens his mouth, he insults someone or gives them a childish nickname.

Like the junior high school bully he imitates, he can’t take it himself. Because he lacks the intellect to defend his policies, he dismisses the press as a pack of liars and is afraid to face reporters unless there is a helicopter behind him ready to rush him away in case he is asked a tough question.

It is easy to claim that you support legal immigration when the system is rigged to keep out everyone you don’t want here. There were no immigration laws when my ancestors came here and the first laws were racist laws to keep out Asians and then to limit non-Protestants such as Irish and Italian Catholics.

The current wave of immigrants are people desperate to escape harsh conditions, many attempting to enter legally by coming to the border and asking for asylum.

In any group there will be good and bad people, but I have had a lot of experience with immigrants in my life and my experience is that most want to work hard and make a better life for their families.

Stuart Tolman




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