March 10 Letters to the Editor

Posted March 09, 2010, at 6:19 p.m.

Back local post offices

Sen. Susan Collins is critical of the USPS proposal to help save its budget by curtailing Saturday mail delivery. That’s great that she is worried about our mail service. But her alternative suggestions to the USPS — serving its customers better, attracting new customers and increasing volume — leans toward the hypocritical.

Does she not send messages to her constituency by e-mail? Are her requests for feedback not sent online, with the suggestion for responses to be similarly electronically sent?

No question — the Internet is here to stay. But the more that responsible people such as Sen. Collins ignore their own obvious contributions to the decline of the use of the USPS, the more it will have to struggle, raise rates, and yes, possibly cut service.

I have excellent service from my USPS office in South Thomaston. I try to support it by buying stamps, mailing letters and packages, and declining offers of responding “online” whenever I can get something sent by mail. It would certainly help if more public figures such as Sen. Collins did the obvious and just kept to their own level of postal use of a few years ago.

Blaming the victim doesn’t work.

Roberta M. Goodell

South Thomaston

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A more gracious border

It was with great interest that I read the BDN’s recent story concerning loss of visitors to Campobello.

As the owner of a small B & B in Machias, Campobello is one of the first places that I recommend to tourists new to this area. First, it is free and second it is a historical home where one actually can imagine a family living there.

Three summers ago, I had a delightful family as guests. The parents were born, raised and educated in a foreign country. They now are citizens of the United States and have two wonderful early teenagers. When they returned after visiting Campobello they were literally shaken with the treatment they received upon returning to Lubec. The crossing guard was rude, hostile, belligerent and truly threatening. This was the treatment they came to this country to avoid.

Perhaps better training and supervision of the crossing guards could help solve the problem. I readily admit we need to be alert, but this can be accomplished without being downright nasty.

Liz Fauver

Machias

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Toyota and mercury

Why don’t we all give the Toyota company a break? It appears the company is valiantly struggling to correct the defects in their cars as fast as possible, while the news media, lawmakers, etc., vilify the company’s attempts to fix problems and again have a quality product, as in the past, and regaining customer trust. Investigations will bring out the facts. The problems that come to light then can be dealt with, one by one.

How about spending some time investigating why mercury is safe in your teeth but not safe in a junked vehicle? Why you can’t use a mercury thermometer anymore, but can install wonderfully energy-efficient light bulbs containing mercury in your home that later have to be disposed of as hazardous waste:? Maybe the gent in Germany with an attic full of incandescent bulbs isn’t “Madder than a hatter” after all.

Mona Kennedy

Brooksville

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Working with wind

In an editorial on Feb. 2, the Bangor Daily News called on the Legislature to further pursue requiring developers of the wind project to provide tangible benefits to host communities.

In Oakfield, we negotiated an agreement with a wind power company that will generate revenue for the town and potentially reduce taxes for our residents.

As an Oakfield resident, I feel a responsibility to the young people to make the most of this opportunity. We’ve taken strong steps toward ensuring an excellent community benefits package, while thoroughly reviewing the proposed project and its benefits and challenges. It was important to educate ourselves before we entered into tax and community benefits discussions.

As First Wind sought to build a project in our community, we worked closely with it to create a process whereby municipal officials and residents could ask questions. We did a lot of fact finding, had a balanced negotiation and reached a good outcome. We created the Oakfield Wind Review Committee to review all aspects of the project and to involve the people of Oakfield in the process. The committee created a 45-page report with the recommendations for improvements to the project that selectmen later approved.

We hired a law firm and with its help worked out what we feel is a fair deal. This project will bring our town significant revenues, create jobs and allow us to consider a tax cut while making improvements to our infrastructure with the increased tax revenue.

We’d be happy to share our experience with other towns.

David Gordon

Oakfield

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Snowe, Collins – listen

We are long overdue in the need for health care reform. Mainers are suffering given lack of access to affordable quality health care coverage. We need to not give up this effort and allow the Scott Browns of the world to take over the U.S. Senate.

Sens. Snowe and Collins need to keep their ears to the floor on this one. Mainers are demanding and begging for change to this broken health care system. We see it every day, as more people are dropped off Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield coverage because of the insanely high premiums and high-deductible catastrophic plans that aren’t worth the paper they are written on.

Our senators and congressman are losing their resolve. How much longer can people in the working and lower middle class continue to suffer because health policies are high-risk, low-income and don’t represent a profit opportunity for the big health insurance conglomerates?

We are reaching a boiling point. The public overwhelmingly wants a public option in health care and major reforms in the operation of the private health insurers including a ban on dropping coverage based on pre-existing conditions and caps on people’s lifetime coverage. The time for reform is now. Sens. Snowe and Collins – listen to your constituency and do what is right for the people.

Daniel Mulligan

Bangor

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