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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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From our readers

Issue Date: October 11, 2018

Letter to Editor:

They say that if you put a frog in a pan of water and slowly turn up the heat it won't know that it's in danger until it's too late. I fear that Marinette may become one of greatest environmental disasters in the nation with barely a peep from our State agencies and elected officials. We are in dangerous waters now.

Alarm bells unlike any we've heard before should be ringing with the newspaper reports of the County Board's approval of the Tyco/Johnson Controls request to build a water filtration system to treat contaminated water from a drainage ditch by the University in Runnoe Park. The alphabet soup contaminates of PFOA and PFOS were found in the waters of the ditch to be over thirty times higher than the EPA health advisory standard of 70 parts per trillion, a standard that a government study found to be possibly too high by a factor of ten.

This ditch drains stormwater and groundwater from roughly Cleveland Ave. by Country Inn & Suites through the High School, Zion Lutheran Church, and the Luther Home properties, and on out through the University campus and into the bay. Tyco wants to pass every drop of that water through a carbon filtration system to take out those contaminates before they reach the bay. According to a federal draft report, epidemiology studies suggest that PFOA and PROS are associated with increased risk of pregnancy-induced hypertension, liver damage, thyroid disease, asthma, deceased fertility, and a decline in response to vaccines. The research also suggests these chemicals can increase the risk of some cancers.

This is the bay our kids and grandkids swim in, our anglers fish in, our boaters sail in, our wildlife drink out of, and is the single greatest natural resource Marinette has to enjoy and sustain our community. If this contamination is rushing down the ditch to reach the bay, surely a more slowly moving body of contaminated groundwater is making its way to the bay right under the ground our houses are built upon. And how will se stop that from reaching the bay? How can we filter water seeping into the bay across miles of beachfront?

Let us start having regular public informational meetings and clear-eyed understandings of what we are up against. Let us hope that our City's name doesn't become Wisconsin's equivalent of Flint, Michigan.

Sincerely,

Doug Oitzinger,

Marinette




Dear Editor:

Things voters should remember when going to vote this year:

Trump: separated families from their children and the Republican controlled Congress said nothing. All churches preach "to love your neighbor as yourself".

Trump: I am rolling back many environmental protection laws and denying climate change. Congress said nothing. Long term our children will suffer with bad water, air that will be difficult to breathe and many move great stories.

Trump: I am a special friend with Kim from North Korea and I love him. Also a great friend to Russia's Putin. At the same time I am breaking ties with all our World War II allies. Still members of Congress said nothing.

Trump: I am eliminating health care for millions of citizens and again members of Congress said nothing.

Trump: I will reduce the cost of prescription drugs, and he did nothing.

Trump: I am having a huge military parade in Washington and we will pay for it.

He and Congress care less about the deficit now that they are in control.

Roads and bridges have been forgotten.

Trump: I gave everyone a small tax cut. Since then gas and food, many other needs went up for families.

He did take care of himself and his many rich friends with a large corporation tax cut.

Trump: I imposed tariffs and started an international trade war. Congress said nothing. Families will pay again with higher prices.

Trump has insulted our allies and many members of his own party and all the candidates he ran against.

Trump has apologized to no one and will never ask for forgiveness.

The world is watching and we have to make a change in Congress.

We must vote!

At age 83 I can't stand by and let the country be destroyed without making a statement! My wish is that all the young kids get to enjoy a life of joy that I had in the USA.

Allan Krizenesky,

Former Mayor,

President of Chamber of Commerce,

U.S. Marine,

Businessman




Editor:

"It's Time for Change"

Feeling sorry for someone is not a reason to keep that person holding a seat in our government. It's time for Wisconsin citizens to seek a different path of new ideas and leadership in the 89th Assembly District. Ken Holdorf has bold new ideas including citizens being part of the solutions to the problems Wisconsin faces. Ken clearly communicates his objectives and invites constructive criticism from the people he would represent. Ken willingly listens to concerns people have and takes them on as his own, a practice lost in recent years. Throughout history, the greatest leaders were those who were confident, strong and passionate for values that benefited everyone. I believe the mark of a good person is one who recognizes talents of others and encourages them to contribute no matter how large or small toward achieving shared goals.

Ken's selfless devotion to his country by serving in the Navy, where he acquired his leadership skills, was honorable and also provided him the qualifications to be an Assembly Representative.

My primary concern is polluting of our water sources. Local officials are saddled with pollution of firefighting foam, with a risk for private wells for citizens in Peshtigo. Additionally we face the threat of sulfide mining from the Back Forty Mine and Wisconsin's legislature repealing the Prove It First Law that protected citizens from sulfide mining. Ken and his willingness to appear at public hearings to give statements on the hazards of sulfide mining, gives a great deal of confidence that Ken will push for initiatives to protect our water.

Wisconsin is a farm state that relies on farming for a prosperous economy. It's unforgivable that western Wisconsin led the nation in farm related bankruptcies. Ken and myself believe when farmers are successful, the rest of us eat. His family history rooted in farming, Ken displays a compassion for the family farmer and I'm confident Ken will find solutions to the struggles of farmers by collaborating with organizations in the agriculture industry.

Ken is focused on the local issues and stays informed by attending Peshtigo and other Town Board meetings. I believe that attending local government meetings makes Ken a much better representative than we in the 89th district have had for multiple years.

Wisconsin's air and water quality has degraded with increased pollution and the threat for more to come.

Ken believes that we need sensible environmental laws that will improve our air and water quality and also hold polluters accountable for laws currently on the books. I believe that Ken Holdorf is the right person to represent me in Madison and I fully intend to vote for him on Nov. 6th.

Mary Hansen,

Peshtigo




Letter to Editor:

Saturday was the Wausaukee Fall Festival. I am the Steward for the Wausaukee Little Free Library located in Payant Park next to Sal's Grocery Store. During the day, I walked up and down Main Street with an old three seater baby stroller filled with used books, offering free books to both children and adults, telling them about the Library and the importance of reading.

I was parked in front of the Packerland Broadband booth handing out books, when Randy Grailer (turns out he is the Packerland Customer Service Representative) asked me where I got my books. I told him I relied on donations, my own library that needs to be liquidated, and that I was a Thrift Store shopper, mentioning our local WE Store.

I thought maybe he wanted some books! He handed me $50 and gave me his best wishes. I was shocked and amazed. Slightly overwhelmed, I got a little teary and tried to express my thanks and gratitude. He told me to "have a good day".

Yes, I was! I moved on and when I was across the street from the Packerland table, a woman ran over and told me she worked with Randy and that she would also like to give me $50! Her name was Amanda Williams. I asked if I could give this $50 to the Food Bank for Christmas books for Children as monies previously available were not offered this year. She said that would be fine, and then gave me ANOTHER $50 for the Little Free Library. Again, I was shocked and amazed " and thankful!

For the last two years I have been a steward for two Little Free Libraries, and no one has ever given me any money for books. I am a reader and believe in the importance of books. They have changed my life in so many ways and have allowed me to go so many places. How wonderful that Amanda and Randy have offered their support. Thank you just does not seem adequate. I am grateful for these two people and their generosity.

Susan Bork,

Wausaukee




Dear Editor:

I cannot help but laugh when I read the stories analyzing what is wrong or undesirable with living in Marinette County or the area.  Marinette County and the surrounding areas are a great place to live and vacation.  A person can live in a quiet rural area and still be close to town.  No traffic jams.  Lake property is available but not in abundance.  Nice 40's are few and far between but smaller parcels are for sale everywhere.  Residential rentals and drugs are a problem all over the state and not just in this area.

 The biggest problem seems to be the lack of high paying or even just well-paying long term steady jobs. Sadly many of the best jobs are working for Marinette County which has well over 400 people working for it.  County employees have excellent benefits, retirement and vacation compared to most jobs available locally right now and in the past.  

 Unfortunately the latest technology is not readily available or cheap in the rural areas "up north".  Young people like technology and high speed internet around here can be a challenge.  It is available but in some places a person has to use satellite or cell phone technology to get internet.  So one area limitation is the ability to stream video due to the bandwidth required and limited access to high speed internet.  I have had satellite TV since 1996 and it works quite well.  We have DSL from the local phone company and MiFi from the local cell phone company along with using the hotspots on our cell phones.  Which is why I say technology isn't easy or inexpensive like it can be in the bigger cities or most of southern Wisconsin.

 There is not an abundance of the finer things to do locally but a person cannot go boating, ride ATV's, UTV, snowmobiles, hunt, fish, hike, snowshoe, cross country ski, etc. in the cities as easy as one can "up north".  We have a new hospital so a nicer medical facility is fairly close.  There is an abundance of nice affordable places to eat.  Green Bay is not that far away either.  Milwaukee is only a 3 hour drive.  If you don't have a driver's license and reliable vehicle "up north" that can be a huge issue though.  Some of the rural roads could use some work too. Speedy response from law enforcement, ambulances and fire departments is not common in the rural areas and never will be.

 The area is a great place to live and visit if only we had an abundance of high paying or even just well-paying long term steady jobs.

Pete Pfankuch

Resident for 26 years

P.S. I don't work locally.




Dear Editor:

When I saw the "presumption of innocence" replaced with "guilty until you prove your innocence" in the Kavanaugh hearings, it reminded me of all lies you see in campaign ads these days.

Today outside money, money "the accuser", is disguised as the truth, and is trying to tell you that your current government is "guilty" of destroying Wisconsin.

The truth below is what we use to "reprove" the "innocence" of those accused.

Before Walker, the jobless rate was 9.3% today 2.9%,

Before Walker, 3.6 billion budget deficit, today a surplus each year with 8 billion returned to the taxpayer in tax cuts.

Before Walker, college tuition rose every year, Republicans found a 1.6 billion surplus "slush fund" in the system, and froze tuition since 2013.

Under Walker, our pensions funds are first in funding, 99.7% versus California or Illinois whose pension debt is measured in "hundreds of billions of dollars".

Under Walker our healthcare is rated first in the country on many levels, and Walker saved the federal  government a billion dollars by NOT taking the Medicaid expansion.

WHY not take the federal Medicaid money you ask? Because the state was already taking care of those with pre-existing conditions under high risk pools, and already had a low rate of uninsured. Wisconsin is a state whose uninsured rate is at 2% for those insured for part of the year or more, and is lower than California's 7.2%. California who took the billions because many of their uninsured was caused by having a third of all the homeless in the country? Why didn't California leaders address the root cause of having so many homeless first? Poor leadership taking the easy way out, by simply accepting American's federal tax dollars, versus Wisconsin's proactive leadership.

And if you have pre-existing conditions and a federal law changes, making you think you can't get insurance, Wisconsin leaders will come up with a plan to get you covered too,  just as they have in the past. A guarantee by all Wisconsin elected officials. One that will not destroy the quality of Wisconsin's healthcare system as the Affordable Care Act did to many states who followed the Medicaid expansion dollars and rules. Our continued high quality healthcare is due to Wisconsin's leadership decisions and actions.  

FoxConn also has been unfairly targeted in false ads. No existing tax dollars are going to FoxConn. In fact other states like Michigan and others offered more incentives. Wisconsin's incentives are based on performance, jobs created, not money up front. And the FoxConn decision to come to Wisconsin was based on a stable economic environment, one the Walker administration worked hard to improve for all Wisconsinites.

The false ads are trying to convince you, the voter, that you are experiencing hard times, and imply that you just don't know the truth.  

In reality, listening to them, the money, the accusers, will bring you the real hard times once again, to the bad policies of old, to once again follow the path of a failing California or Illinois.

Let's keep the leaders we have now and continue the Wisconsin success story, a story other states wished they had.

Now that is the truth by a witness who watched all this Wisconsin success happen the past eight years. A person who has a lot of skin in the game as a cancer survivor with pre-existing conditions.  It is backed by results and the truth, not a lot of "money" for ads.

Gerry Wrench,

Marinette WI




Letter to the Editor:

At the Oct. 8th meeting of the Coleman School Board, the renovations of the school were discussed.  It appears that the General Contractor has determined, with less than half the plans from the Architect, that we need to come up with an additional $466,000 at this point.

I specifically asked the Representative from Miron Construction at the time of the proposed referendum how they came up with the $13,800,000 figure.  He stated that it was based on other jobs they have done and it may be on the high side to cover incidentals.  That was months ago, at present a nail hasn't been pounded nor a piece of concrete broken and they are already talking about almost an additional half a million dollars will be needed.

At the meeting a presentation of concept drawings were displayed.  They explained the changes from what was discussed during the referendum sales pitch, to what is proposed today.  The board seemed unconcerned about the notice of a need for more money as they have a "Fund 46" which has over a half a million dollars in it and will be used to cover the additional costs.  When more of the plans become available, after some tests are completed for a water mitigation problem in the Elementary School, and when the bidding process with subcontractors are finalized, we were told the price may go up or down.  At the meeting, it appeared that Miron was setting the stage for more increases to come in the future.  If the price goes up, the options will be to either come up with more money or cut things from the project.

Public comments were not allowed at this meeting and I had a few concerns.  One example would be the existence of "Fund 46".  Previously I had asked if there was a roof replacement fund established and was told there wasn't, now we discover there is this "Fund 46" with a half a million dollars in it that was for capital repairs (such as roofs).  This is taxpayers money and question if this money should now be used on this renovation without taxpayer approval.  Taxpayers approved $13,800,000 not $14,300,000 on the referendum.  I am all for our children's education, but we need to be vigilant and frugal.

Dennis Fiedorowicz,

Pound


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