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Letter to the editor: Help for being a responsible pet owner

Posted by on Oct 18, 2019

There is help for being a responsible pet owner If you have a cat that not been spayed or neutered, now is the time do something about getting it fixed. When I visited the shelter Sept. 18, there were 52 cats that needed homes. That number did not include the two pregnant cats in residence who will soon be adding even more to that overwhelming number of cats currently in the shelter. Every year millions of pets are killed because nobody wants them. Whether you think the problem is too many cats or not enough cat owners, the best, most humane solution is to get your cat fixed. The good news is if you are a responsible pet owner, you can make a difference. In the month of October, Friends of Quincy Animal Shelter is again offering a $50 voucher to help cover the cost of having your cat fixed. The $50 voucher can be used for cats only. Call Penny at 237-1941, give your name and address and you will receive the voucher, no strings attached. Penny Wininger,...

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Letter to the editor: Vote ‘Yes’ on Prop. 1 to keep your family safe

Posted by on Oct 12, 2019

Vote ‘Yes’ on Prop. 1 to keep your family safe Our Grant County Sheriff has proposed a 0.3% sales tax to fund additional law enforcement on the ground in every Grant County community as well as to expand the jail. While it is always hard to vote for an additional tax, I believe our rapidly growing Grant County has reached a critical tipping point in which we must act to keep our families safe. Currently, misdemeanor offenders for most property theft, drug, and gang offences are not booked because our jail is over capacity a majority of the time. This means that criminals know that they will not be held accountable and are turned right back into our communities to commit more crime without consequence. More criminals on our streets instead of in our jail makes for higher danger to us as citizens as well as to those who protect us. The Proposition 1 sales tax proposal is a good one that strikes a balance between visitors to our county and citizens sharing the cost to improve safety. We as Grant County voters finally have an opportunity to stand up to crime and vote to keep our businesses, friends and families safer. Vote ‘Yes’ on Grant County Proposition 1 this November. Respectfully, Darby Jones,...

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Local people deserve to be heard on grizzly bears: Column

Posted by on Oct 11, 2019

By Rep. Dan Newhouse In light of the proposal that just never seems to go away – introducing grizzly bears in the North Cascades – I invite all constituents of the 4th Congressional District to join me in expressing your opinion about how this will affect you and your family. Grizzly bears in the wild are not the cuddly creatures we see portrayed in movies or television. They are apex predators, weighing up to 850 pounds and standing up to 8 feet tall. To get an idea of the impact these powerful bears have on populated communities, all you have to do is ask the people who live in areas where grizzly bears have been introduced. Recently, four hunters in Montana were attacked by grizzlies in three separate attacks over a matter of days. This is not something our community wants to see in our region. I have heard opposition from my constituents across Central Washington, not just those living in the northern region of our district. The North Cascades National Park is a beautiful place, where hundreds of people hike, boat, and camp. The threat of running into a grizzly bear on an afternoon hike or an overnight family camping trip would deter visitors. An attack by a grizzly bear on one of these visitors could not only pose life-threatening consequences, but it could also harm North Central Washington’s thriving recreational economy. The debate over grizzly bear introduction in Washington state isn’t new. In 1995, Washington lawmakers mandated by law that grizzly bears “shall not be transplanted or introduced into the state.” Since then, the federal government has made multiple attempts to ignore the wishes of our state and illegally introduce the apex predator into the North Cascades Ecosystem. The initial proposal under the Obama administration included a public comment period for input. Hundreds of thousands of comments were submitted from all over the country, but the voices that matter most – the voices of the communities directly affected – were ignored. The treatment of local families and concerned citizens at the “public forum” conducted in Okanogan County was unacceptable, leaving many feeling that the federal government did not care about their concerns for their families, neighbors, and businesses. As the Department of the Interior continued to pursue this proposal, I demanded of both former Interior Secretary Zinke and Interior Secretary Bernhardt that this time must be different – the voices of these communities must be heard. A public meeting is the best way for officials at the National Park Service (NPS) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to hear directly from the local communities who would have to live with the consequences of grizzly bears transplanted into the North Cascades. I am grateful Secretary Bernhardt heard my concerns and agreed to host a meeting on October 7 in Okanogan. Those who do not wish to speak at the event can provide their public comment in writing to NPS and USFWS officials. I will be attending to express my grave concerns and wholehearted opposition. I hope this public meeting will empower Central Washington communities to not let federal bureaucrats dictate their futures. It is imperative that local voices be heard. Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Wash., represents Washington’s 4th District in the U.S. House of Representatives. To send...

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Letter to the editor: Criminal justice system needs Proposition 1

Posted by on Oct 10, 2019

Criminal justice system needs Proposition 1 I’m voting “Yes” on Proposition 1 on Nov. 5. Proposition 1 imposes a “sales and use tax of three-tenths of one percent” to raise money to “enhance and improve criminal justice and law enforcement functions in the county and cities of the county” (quote from Grant County Commissioners’ resolution to put Proposition 1 on the ballot). I’ve been a Grant County Jail chaplain for several years and have seen and felt the physical, mental and spiritual working and living conditions in the jail. The guards, staff, supervisors and inmates find themselves in a jail designed 40 years ago to meet the needs of that day and age. We need to build a jail that meets the needs of our day and age. Inhumanely overcrowded, understaffed, outdated physical facilities and technologies, minimal health care, lack of rehabilitation services, poor morale, all of these things and more give the residents of Grant County good reason to support Proposition 1 as it provides the opportunity not only to build a new County Jail that adequately serves the needs of all who work and are jailed there, but also the opportunity to provide increased funds to the cities and towns of Grant County as they develop their law enforcement services. I’m voting “Yes” on Proposition 1 as a way of bringing reform into our local criminal justice system. Ron Moen,...

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Dance team shines under lights

Posted by on Oct 8, 2019

The 2019-2020 Quincy High School Jills Dance Team made its first public performance of the new school year during halftime of Quincy football’s 23-6 Homecoming loss Friday evening at the new QHS stadium. The performance lasted just a few minutes and incorporated a flyer stunt held by a few bases. Dance team members strike a pose to finish their routine during halftime of the football game Sept. 27.Photo by Miles King/Post-Register The team performed the same routine at the Homecoming assembly just hours before in the school gymnasium, said first-year Head Coach Alondra Ramirez. “This one went a whole lot better,” she said. The team has been practicing since July, she added. The team was announced in mid-June on the team’s Facebook page. Ramirez, formerly the assistant coach to Alyssa Santos for the previous two years, took the position after Santos decided to step away. According to Ramirez, Santos told her to apply because she thought Ramirez would be best for the job. Ramirez was excited to get the job, adding, “Knowing what a huge positive impact dance had on my life, I wanted to give that back to other students.” Ramirez was on the team during her four years at QHS and was a team leader in her last two years on the squad, she said. The squad will next perform at the Jacks’ last home game for senior night against East Valley Yakima on Oct. 18. By Miles King,...

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No one escapes from the Butterfly Effect: Column

Posted by on Oct 8, 2019

By Rich Elfers “Predictability: Does the flap of a butterfly’s wings in Brazil set a tornado in Texas?” (Scholarpedia.org: “The Butterfly Effect”) In 1972, American meteorologist Edward N. Lorenz (1917-2008) invented a theory to predict complex weather patterns more accurately. His concept was based on the proposition that small actions can have enormous effects – thus the statement above. This idea has been used not only to examine weather and its complexity, but also other areas and fields of study. Ben Franklin wrote a poem in the 18th century to highlight this perspective long before Lorenz: “For want of a nail the shoe was lost, For want of a shoe the horse was lost, For want of a horse the rider was lost, For want of a rider the battle was lost, For want of a battle the kingdom was lost, And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.” World War I started as a result of actions by a 19-year-old Serbian named Gavrilo Princip. Princip was a participant in a plot to assassinate Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the sole heir to the throne of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. A previous attempt that day had failed. Afterwards, Princip had stopped to buy a sandwich when he saw the archduke and his wife in their touring car, turning around just outside the sandwich shop. They had taken a wrong route. Princip rushed out and shot both fatally. World War I resulted, which brought about World War II, and then the Cold War. This series of events still affects us today. It all came about as a result of one man’s hunger for a sandwich. This Butterfly Effect has been used in hindsight to explain the 1986 Challenger explosion: It was the Challenger’s 10th trip into outer space. Temperatures on the morning of the launch dropped below freezing. Some engineers were concerned that the low temperatures would affect the rubber seals called O-rings on the rocket boosters. The concern was disregarded, and the Challenger rocket was launched. Seventy-three seconds later, the Challenger rocket exploded, killing all seven crew members, including civilian public school teacher Christa McAuliffe. This disaster forever changed NASA and the space program. Unfortunately for all of us, we don’t often know which decisions we make in our lives will have long-term consequences until much, much later. Every one of us who is over 40 can think of an event that has deeply affected our lives. Only upon reflection and analysis can we discover the magnitude of a decision we made without much thought or consideration at the time. So, what’s the solution? How do we avoid the negative consequences of the Butterfly Effect? How do we use this understanding about the role of chance in our lives to our benefit? Here are some words of wisdom that might guide us: “Never miss a good chance to shut up.” – Will Rogers “If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to live with doubts, he shall end in certainties.” – Francis Bacon “Here’s some advice. Stay alive.” – Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games “We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.” – Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture The Butterfly Effect touches all of us....

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Do politicians have plans to pay for promises? Column

Posted by on Oct 4, 2019

By Don C. Brunell Our nation is on an unsustainable borrowing trajectory, and it could get much worse unless voters start asking politicians, “How are taxpayers going to pay for what they promise?” We now owe over $22.5 trillion to lenders, of which nearly half are offshore (China $1.11 trillion). At the rate that we are selling treasury notes, the deficit will balloon to $24 trillion by 2020. That means when the presidential election rolls around next year, each taxpayer’s share of the debt will be $183,000 if nothing is done and if politicians keep their campaign promises. During the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump promised he would eliminate the nation’s debt in eight years. “Instead, his budgets would add $9.1 trillion during that time,” veteran analyst Kimberly Amadeo, reported in The Balance last month. Meanwhile, Democratic presidential hopefuls – Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, Kamala Harris, Julián Castro, Pete Buttigieg and Joe Biden – seem to be in a bidding war promising as much as $10 trillion in new federal spending just to get rid of fossil fuels. The Peter G. Peterson Foundation, which focused on putting our nation on a more sustainable footing during the 2016 presidential election, says time is running out. The longer elected officials push it under the carpet, the larger the problem becomes. Unfortunately, Peterson’s warnings today are just faint murmurs in the wilderness. According to Peterson: “The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects the national debt could rise to as much as 175 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) by 2040. That level of debt would far exceed the historical average of approximately 40 percent debt to GDP.” Translated, that means a rapidly escalating portion of our tax dollars will go to interest payments unless the next president and Congress act to bring borrowing and spending under control. “By 2023, CBO projects that interest costs alone could exceed what the federal government has historically spent on R&D, nondefense infrastructure, and education combined. By 2050, they could be more than three times historical spending on those investments, as a share of GDP.” The problem grows over time because six out of every 10 tax dollars goes to paying for entitlements, most notably Social Security and Medicare. Entitlement spending increases as more people retire and life expectancies are greater. Compounding the problem is fewer workers are paying Social Security taxes. For example, in 1950 there were 16 workers for every Social Security recipient. By 2011, it dropped to three and is expected to go to two by 2030. CBO projects that health care spending by all sectors of the economy – government, business, and consumers – will climb to 25 percent of GDP by 2040. Maintaining economic prosperity and fostering a climate of job growth is important. Taxes must be affordable. Individual income taxes are nearly half of the federal government revenue stream. Social Security and Medicare taxes add another 33 percent. Government revenues rise as employment grows and our economy prospers. The last real bipartisan attempt to put our government on a sustainable path came in 2010 when former Sen. Alan Simpson, R-Wyo., and Erskine Bowles, former White House Chief of Staff under Bill Clinton, were assigned to develop solutions. Everything was on the table, including a combination of taxes, economic growth and spending...

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Letter to the editor: Reunion

Posted by on Oct 3, 2019

Thanks for making reunion a success The class of ‘64 reunion committee would like to thank all of those who attended and made this 55th year get-together such a great success at the Heritage Barn. A special thank you to Harriet Weber and Ed Field for their help in the set up and take down of the chairs and tables. What a wonderful venue to meet in, we are so lucky to have it. The event was capped off with a great dinner catered by Darrell and Chrissy Massey. That put everyone in a great story-telling mood to finish the evening. RaNita Gebers Sally Patton Sharon Damm Barbara Riddle Kathie...

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Climate mandates would empower politicians, lobbyists: Column

Posted by on Sep 28, 2019

By Todd Myers If the activists who took part in the “Climate Strike” get their way, politicians and lobbyists will gather behind closed doors, in a metaphorical smoke-filled room, to write the nation’s climate policy. The result will be bad for personal freedom, our economy, and, ironically, for the environment. Promoting the notion that we face a “climate crisis,” marchers demand massive government mandates to reduce CO2 emissions. They claim only politicians can deliver this, and that small, daily changes by ordinary people are a “distraction.” This is the perfect message for politicians, but not for the environment. Politicians who argue “Only I can do what is necessary,” are not only self-serving, but they belittle and disempower citizens. Some followers appear to want that. Saying the only acceptable solution is political absolves climate activists of making any personal sacrifice for the cause they claim to support. After all, if their small efforts mean nothing, activists can feel righteous simply by demanding that others make the sacrifices they will not. Handing control of climate policy over to politicians also means the rules will be written behind closed doors with many of the industries demonized by marchers. In Washington state, where I live, the oil company BP testified in favor of a CO2 cap-and-trade system. In Oregon, the loudest supporters of the 100 percent renewable electricity mandate were private utilities. Why would industries embrace these rules? Regulation favors the rich, and contrary to what teenage activists believe, corporate lobbyists are happy to work with politicians to set the rules of the game. Politicians get public credit for “bold” action, while regulated companies create rules that hamper competitors while receiving guarantees that protect their business. Some politicians are not subtle about this insider bargain. When congressional Democrats proposed a cap-and-trade system in 2009, New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand wrote in The Wall Street Journal boasting of the opportunity the complicated system offered to her state’s financial traders. A year after financial crisis, politicians were already inviting lobbyists to profit from the system of rules they would help write. The cost for these deals is paid by the rest of us who are not in the room. And they will do little for the environment. Political approaches are often extremely wasteful. In Washington state, the Low Carbon Prosperity Institute estimated the state’s new 100 percent renewable electricity mandate would cost about nine times as much as the cost of CO2-reduction projects available on the market. Researchers (including Obama economic adviser Michael Greenstone) found government policies to promote energy efficiency cost 28 times more than what is available in the marketplace. If we are serious about reducing our impact on the environment, we need to move decisions out of the smoke-filled rooms and empower individuals so they can be part of decisions that affect their family. This approach is not only more ethical; it is more effective. Empowering people to conserve energy gives them the will and ability to save money and reduce environmental impact. Unlike politicians, when individuals choose strategies that don’t work, they admit the mistake (albeit quietly to themselves), stop, and find something that does work. Of course, politicians will claim individual action is not enough. Rather than trusting politicians and hoping for a 100 percent solution that will never come,...

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Letter to the editor: Proposition 1 is needed

Posted by on Sep 27, 2019

Proposition 1 is needed Why would I support a vote for more taxes like the upcoming Grant County Law & Justice Proposition 1 for a 0.3 percent tax increase on Nov. 5? Aren’t we taxed enough? That’s why I love living in Grant County. Because our officials aren’t tax hungry and seriously wouldn’t propose it if it isn’t absolutely necessary. With the realization that our Law & Justice is monetarily frugal with the taxpayers expenditures and have never asked for any increased taxes despite legislation that says they can, I took the time to visit www.forasafergrantcounty.org website just to find out more. After full research, it is of my strong opinion that we need to ensure passage of Proposition 1. To put it in perspective: A 0.3 percent tax increase is 30 cents for every $100 spent; $3.00 for every $1,000. That is cheaper than a coffee. Just a few executive facts are that: • The money collected according to RCW 82.14.450(6)(1) provides that 60 percent will go to the county and 40 percent will go to the cities in the county. • The primary use of the funds will go to build a new correctional facility and increase staff. • A new correctional facility estimated costs run between $40-60 million, (based on other jails built). Our current jail was built in the 1980s for 85 beds and has been operating at a 200 percent capacity since 1997. Other counties of similar population size have a jail bed capacity of 300 percent more than ours. One correctional officer per 33 inmates per shift is not acceptable. Having to not arrest suspects or release inmates due to lack of space is ludicrous. Thirty cents for every $100 to make that change is reasonable and affordable. • Grant County population is almost 100,000 residents – that is an increase of 11 percent in just the last 10 years. We need the balance of safety to meet the needs of our growth. Our police are understaffed, there is an increase of response calls, etc. In review of what 0.3 percent increase of tax will generate just for Moses Lake alone it will provide: four full-time patrol officers, two full-time investigators, two clerical staff and that includes wages, benefits and equipment for them all. I ask you to stand in leadership with me and vote yes. Your spare change will make a huge difference. Thank you, Elisia Dalluge, Moses...

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