Letters to the Editor

Important name left out of obit
Last week, you printed the obituary of my sister Sally Rader. After the memorial was over and all of the out-of-town family and friends had left, I sat down in a quiet moment to re-read the obituary and discovered to my dismay that, in our grief, we had neglected to include Sally’s husband, Robin Rader, as preceding her in death.
Robin’s memory is very much alive with our family and he was an important part of that last week of Sally’s life as we reminisced and she prepared to join him in the afterlife.
The family thanks everyone who has called, sent or offered their condolences in person. The memorial was the perfect send-off for Sally and a great comfort to us.
Nancy Lander

Food should not be taxed
I do not believe that food should be taxed all year. This is because sales tax is a regressive tax and places a larger burden on the disadvantaged, elderly and handicapped citizens. A regressive tax means the less income you have, the greater the percent of your income goes to that tax and so the bigger the impact on the budgets of the disadvantaged.
Progressive taxes, such as income tax and property tax, mean the greater your income the larger the percent of your income you pay for taxes, except some differences for other tax rules, exemptions, etc., but basically that’s the dynamic. If your income is more, you pay a smaller percent of it for the tax and so it has less of an impact on your living standard. In our society we have some of both types of taxation. But all people should understand the implications of each kind.
I believe it is OK to have a regressive sales tax on other items, say clothing, hardware, etc, which people can do without or find an alternative source (second hand or cheaper). But everyone needs food; there are no alternatives for your family each day.
I do not believe that prepared foods should be taxed either, because there are segments of our population for whom this would have a huge impact. The elderly who are trying to remain independent for as long as possible often use prepared foods regularly, likewise handicapped folks who are living as independently as they can. Those folks can often least afford the extra tax.
Where could the City of Homer get more revenue? I believe that the city should have a priority for their budget items: No. 1 would be the health and safety of our citizens, No. 2 would be basic services, No. 3 would give high priority to education/youth. Other items would be funded only after No. 1-3 were taken care of.
I believe that if people who live out of the city need to be charged for some city services, that is far more fair than the sales tax on food all year.
I believe that when folks say they don’t want to burden just the property-owners with more taxes—implying that folks who rent do not incur those costs also—that is incorrect. When taxes on rental property are raised—perhaps not immediately, but as soon as a new lease is negotiated—the rental amount will be increased.
The City Council needs to listen to citizens who speak out, now and especially the two times this tax was voted down. They need to scrutinize the whole budget, to prioritize needs and wants, and then be fair to all citizens when they decide how it will be paid for.
Lani Raymond

Coastal Studies celebrates milestone
The Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies completed its 28th year of the Kachemak Bay CoastWalk citizen monitoring program and we want to thank the 552 volunteers who removed 4,373 pounds of debris from 70 miles of Kachemak Bay coastline this fall. Many individuals contributed to this effort as well as local Girl Scouts, HoWL, West Homer, McNeil Canyon and Fireweed Elementary schools, Homer and Mears Middle Schools, and students from the Kenai Peninsula College. For the third year in a row, the top three items found were Styrofoam pieces, plastic pieces and cigarette filters.
The majority of debris in Kachemak Bay is generated locally, with the occasional item wandering in from Cook Inlet. Although we found few pieces of debris generated by the Japan Tsunami of 2011 this year, it is likely more are on the way, and we will continue to work with volunteers to monitor the beaches.
Thanks also to all of the volunteers and businesses who have contributed to our Washed Ashore: Homer Project, helping us to work toward achieving our goal of keeping 100 percent of the non-toxic marine debris collected this year out of the landfill. More than 1,000 volunteer hours were spent cleaning, processing and creating art from the marine debris collected.
Thanks so much to our local supporters: Petro Marine Services, Icicle Seafoods, Kachemak Bay Gear Shed, The Dickerson Family, Wynn Levitt, Mako’s Water Taxi, Moose Run Metalsmiths, and Red Mountain Marine and to those contributing from afar: Humpy’s Alehouse, Alaskan Women’s Environmental Network, Gulf of Alaska Keeper and the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council.
The workshop will be open throughout the winter and for much of next year, please call the CACS office to find out when you can drop by and be a part of this great project.
Patrick Chandler,
Special programs coordinator,
Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies

Thanking all vendors
The Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center’s annual Car Raffle was held on Thursday Dec. 6. As always it was a fun evening of laughter and prizes.
We would like to thank all the volunteers and donors that made the raffle a success. Also to everyone that bought a ticket this year, we were able to sell all 500 tickets.
Thank you to all our prize donors: Stanley Ford of Kenai, All Season’s Honda, Barb’s Video, Center For Alaskan Coastal Studies, The Homer Bookstore, Fat Olives, Homer Ocean Charters, First National Bank Alaska, The Driftwood Inn, Jin Shin Jyutsu, Kachemak Gear Shed/Redden Marine, Timber Bay B&B, Spenard Builders Supply, NMS Lodging, Era Alaska, Captain B’s Alaskan C’s, Save-U-More, Major Marine Tours, Timeless Toys, The Spyglass Inn, NAPA, True North Kayak Adventures, AJ’s Oldtown Steakhouse and Tavern, VBS Heating Supply, Bear Creek Winery and Lodging, Homer Brewing Company, Two Sister Bakery and Fresh Sourdough Express.
These businesses donated over $1,500 worth of prizes to make this event a success. A special thanks to Monte Davis, for being a great emcee and providing us with many laughs.
Lastly, a thank you to our wonderful volunteers, without whom we could not put on events such as this; Lynn Beatty and JoJo Molloy for drawing tickets, Madilyn Robinson, Maura Gibson and Lorenda Seifert for tracking each number on our board, Pat Melone for handling all the last minute ticket sales and Don Cotogno for manning the official computer.
The Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center would like to extend a Thank You to everyone who bought a ticket and supported this raffle. These are the funds that allow the Chamber to put on community events like, Winter Carnival, Clean Up Day and the 4th of July Parade. By purchasing a ticket you have done your community a service.
Nyla Lightcap and Homer Chamber staff

Youth musical coming up
Homer Council on the Arts has recently received a sponsorship contribution from Wells Fargo Bank in support of our after-school Musical Theatre Program for young people. This program will meet January through March, culminating with the an April production of “Honk!” which is based on the children’s story “The Ugly Duckling.” The program and production will be directed by Mary Langham.
The program will meet twice a week on Mondays and Thursdays, 5-7 p.m. The first two weeks will focus on musical theatre skills, preparing the students for the audition for Honk!. The workshop is required for the audition, but students can take the workshop without continuing into the performance part of the program. The performance dates will be April 5, 6, and 7, and will mark the beginning of our annual Jubilee Youth Art Month.
Sponsorships such as that of Wells Fargo Bank, along with contributions from individuals and businesses in our community, allow HCOA to offer this opportunity to any interested youth.
Thank you, Wells Fargo Bank for supporting HCOA in our mission of making it possible for everyone in our community to experience and participate in the arts. For more information about the HCOA Musical Theatre Program, please visit HomerArt.org or call 235-4288.
Gail Edgerly,
executive director,
Homer Council on the Arts

Thank you for ‘cord of wood’
The men of the Homer Hockey Association would like to thank all the people who bought tickets in the recent “cord of wood” raffle. The raffle was to raise funds for all the coaches that give their time and money to the rink with little recognition. This was our way of saying thank you to them. All coaches are now able to play in the men’s hockey league for free until the end of the season.
Two cords of wood were raffled off, one of the winners donated their cord to the American Legion to give to a “Share the Spirit” family. It is great to see that this fundraiser was able to help two different organizations. There were several people who sold the majority of the tickets, and we wanted to give a special thanks to those men. The Homer Hockey Association will greatly benefit from this fundraiser so we can continue to enjoy this great sport.
If you would like more information about playing men’s hockey, call me at 399-4828. All skill levels are welcome.
Matt Stineff,
Men’s hockey manager

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Posted by on Dec 19th, 2012 and filed under Letters to the Editor. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

2 Responses for “Letters to the Editor”

  1. great letter Lani! says:

    Thank you for explaining that so well. I agree with everything you said.

  2. No tax year round says:

    I concur one hundred percent! give up the stupid ‘holiday’ and make it permanent! The spit and fishing uses a lot of low paid workers, older folks on fixed incomes should not be paying a higher percentage of their income for food.

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