Letters to the Editor – September 4

Why change permitting process?
Within HB 77, Governor Parnell and Lt. Governor Treadwell hope to restructure the state-level permitting process on or near wetlands and coastal zones.
HB 77 essentially dismantles the state’s permitting process, or rather, streamlines it in favor of companies like Pebble Limited Partnership. Yet, the administration has for years been defending the State of Alaska’s own permitting process, saying it is rigorous enough for thorough review.
So therein lies my question: why dismantle a permitting process that has been rigorous enough for years? And secondly, has the permitting process ever been rigorous enough? The State of Alaska has never denied a mining permit and Alaska is labeled as one of the most friendly permitting environments in both North and South America.
The EPA has a mine plan issued within the Wardrop Report by PLP to assess a dredge and fill 404 permit. The size, scope and location of the Pebble Mine will not change by waiting for PLP to file permits. The Wardrop Report was filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission and its 500 pages clearly outline the size, scope and location of a mine 2,000 feet deep and two miles wide.
Many Alaskans appreciate mining activity in locations that will not cause adverse impacts on our environment, myself included. And Alaskans will also appreciate to know in advance if the EPA will restrict dredge and fill permits, given the known information.
It is best for everyone, including the mining companies, to know as early as possible if a 404 permit will be denied before companies like PLP continue to invest their hundreds of millions of dollars.
Brett Veerhusen
Born in Homer, Alaska
Bristol Bay fisherman

To the community of Homer
I am deeply sorry about the incident that I inadvertently caused on May 16, 2013 at Homer High School (See front page story).
I never meant to cause alarm or to frighten anyone. I had absolutely no idea that my actions of playing a “role player” type game with a friend prior to school starting could turn out as it did. I never thought for a second that our game “prop” could cause such a commotion and result in a fire drill to evacuate the school. If I knew then what I know now, I would not have played the game at school as I had been doing the past couple years.
I now realize that people may misperceive innocent conduct and that those misconceptions could have such serious consequences, especially at a school. I now understand how our nation has become frightened from recent terroristic acts in the Lower 48. I should have taken those events into account and thought about how if I made that choice what the consequences would be if someone were to look at it the wrong way. I’m sorry. I didn’t think about the reaction that I could cause. I apologize for any harm that I may have caused to anyone. I am also sorry for causing all the commotion between Homer High Officials, Students and the community.
With my utmost sincerity.
Zachary Fraley

Thanks for scholarships
As a member of the graduating class of 2013, I would like to thank all the donors and organizations who contributed to the many scholarships which were made available to me and my classmates. It is amazing to see the amount of community support Homer High School graduates receive each year.
I would particularly like to thank the American Legion Auxiliary, The Aleutian Harvester Memorial Scholarship Fund, The Local Lions Club, The Homer Foundation and the Drew Scalzi Memorial Scholarship Fund. These awards will greatly assist me financially when I attend the University of Denver this year.

Hanna Mikols

Clearing brush improves safety
Several years back, in the early morning, my mother was walking the dog in the empty field across from our house. She came inside rattled because she had just walked up on a man sleeping, that when roused by the dog, appeared to be intoxicated.
This is how the front part of the vacant field ended up getting regular grooming. All of the brush has been cleared from the ground up to seven feet. We have not had that problem occur again so close to the house. I have no problem letting people know they are lost and should not come through the field again.
This summer, my husband and I took the time to clear the brush on the corner of Kachemak Way and Pioneer. It was our choice, no one asked it of us. We had simply noticed it was hard to see oncoming traffic.
Navigating this intersection was especially hazardous during the busy lunch hour. It took us about two hours to do the job., and we hauled away at least a dozen bags of yard waste. It was no big deal to us because we feel responsibility to our neighborhood.
To our surprise, many people honked and cheered as we cleaned this small section. Taking time to roll down their windows and yell “Thank You” as they drove by.
This is what we need to do with the vacant land from Safeway to Main, from the Bypass to Pioneer, including Poop Deck Trail.
This will afford the police a clear line of site from end to end; certainly a more efficient way to patrol. It will also make responding to emergency medical calls in this area safer for our responders.
We just need permission from the landowners and crews of volunteers, with power tools. It’s just that simple. That’s my two cents,
Genny (Lyda) Miller

Thanks Rotary
What a great town I live in.  I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Homer Kachemak Bay Rotary for the generous scholarship that they awarded me this year.  I truly appreciate the opportunity to continue my college education and will strive to make sure that your faith in me is not misplaced.
I would also like to thank Icicle Seafoods for the scholarship that they gave me.
Thank you very much.
Conner W. Barger

Wooden Boat Festival time
You are cordially invited to the 21st Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Festival, the Year of the Kayak, Sept. 5-8.  Homer began its two-weekend celebration of the kayak Aug. 31-Sept. 1, at the Pratt Museum’s Gathering of Native Tradition.
Wooden Boat Festival’s Year of the Kayak kicks off on Thursday, September 5, with Sea Chanteys at the Salty Dawg.
Festival set-up Friday afternoon, Sept. 6, Pier One Lot, the Wooden Boat Society invites the strong youth of Homer to help herniated elders erect festival structures and move the big wood stove.  Gather around noon.
Friday evening, Sept. 7, the Wooden Boat Society gathers at Islands and Oceans to remember Norm Griffin and honor George Hamm.  Guest speaker Corey Freedman tells Skin Boat School stories.  We view movies:  Kayaks and Canoes, and Around the Cape.
Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 7 and 8, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.:  Wooden Boat Festival and Boat Show at Pier One. Bring your boats!  Talk boat-building! Kevin Dee is bringing several kayaks and the umiak Corey Freedman built this summer with native youth.  Vendors offer reindeer sausage and salmon patties all weekend. In addition to boat activities, Wooden Boat Festival hosts a driftwood song circle with acoustic music, all ages welcome.
Take part in a historic toy boat building as Wooden Boat Society thanks and honors maritime educator John Miles.   2013 is the last year John Miles will cut hundreds of toy wooden boat hulls.  Long has Homer benefited from John’s annual week of service to children.  Now Homer gathers to learn the ropes from John, take notes, and assume community responsibility for this beloved Homer tradition.  If you built a really great toy boat at a previous toy boat building, bring it to the boat show!
Home from tendering on the Rolfy, Tricia Caron rounded up auction donations this week and returned with wondrous gifts.  Thank you, artists and merchants of Homer!  Support the auction, come and bid for magnificent Homer art and useful maritime items!
The Wooden Boat Society seeks to purchase or receive as a donation an historic kayak to auction.  It needn’t be a skin boat, could be a modern kayak that has seen epic action and is ready for its next owner.  Kindly contact Lindianne 235-2952 or Tricia 235-5553 if your kayak is the one, the historic kayak.
Lindianne Sarno

Heart felt thank you to Rotary
I would like to publicly express my heartfelt appreciation to the members of the Homer Kachemak Bay Rotary Club for their support and services to our community.
One of the many ways this is done is to provide scholarships to support those seeking a college education at our local UAA Kachemak Bay Campus.
I am honored to be a recipient of this scholarship. Their generous contribution will help immensely with my goals to pursue a bachelors of science in nursing. Many thanks to the Rotary Club for the variety of ways they make a difference in our community.
Sarah Andrews

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Posted by on Sep 3rd, 2013 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.

4 Responses for “Letters to the Editor – September 4”

  1. No worries says:

    Thanks for the apology, but really it was a gross over reaction by authorities. You did a dumb thing, but all of us have done things we are embarrassed about. The whole situation should have been handled between you, your folks and the school.

    • ten bears says:

      So, if the cops don’t respond they’re the bad guys and if they do respond they’re the bad guys. Seems like the blame should be with the students. How stupid would it be if everyone would have blown it off as a childish prank and then something would have happened either then or in the future. Who’s at fault then??

  2. linda says:

    That whole incident is absurd, the authorities knew it wasn’t a threat, they just wanted to make a big deal out of nothing. No one was afraid. We are not a bunch of scared cowards because of 9/11, how stupid that anyone would even say that to you.

    Meanwhile, the perps of a rape at a party about a year ago have not been held accountable.

  3. foreign_observer says:

    There really should be a ‘new category’ of offenses. called pranks and the punishment is public acknowledgement of the stupidity of the ‘offense’ and then the offender has to buy pizza for those offended. Now, the “offender” has a criminal record and even though it is supposedly expunged or otherwise unavailable, the truth is that IT is on record and available to agencies. What a sick system!

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