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Monday, Feb. 18, 2013: Backyards, students and the law

East/West NIMBY

Congratulations, Dexter. The town’s residents may be awarded the booby prize of the east-west corridor passing through their backyard.

Town officials believe that it may bring economic development, while towns to the north don’t want to gamble their quality of life for a few possible short-term jobs.

Will this be only a transportation highway? Will there be transmission lines and pipelines

along with the projected 4,000 double- and triple-tandem trucks per day going 75 mph? Who will benefit? Do you want to listen to those engines and breathe the toxic fumes, while Canadian oil corporations amass more billions?

Is there a chance that Dexter’s unique topography will allow the polluted air to rise over the ridge, settle in the town and over the lake? Studies have shown an increase in asthma and heart problems in people living near superhighways.

How many people will move away? How would this highway affect our eagles and our deer herds?

The Sierra Club called it one of the worst transportation projects in the U.S., with negative impacts on air and water quality and critical wildlife habitat. Do you want to trade your way of life for a bill of goods?

Oh, heads up, Newport. This corridor may affect Sebasticook Lake as it passes close to the Sebasticook River/Main Stream in north Dexter.

Judith Bennett


Revenue sharing, our students

Some politicians will say anything to convince the people that their best interests are being served by state government. Sometimes, however, their rhetoric exposes the truth as to who they really represent.

This is reflected in recently passed legislation in Augusta.

LD 849 is an unfunded mandate that, over time, reduces the top income tax for Maine’s wealthiest to 4 percent, reduces funding for our schools, slows road and bridge repairs and leaves the responsibility for paying these costs to future Legislatures. It is not a tax break but a tax shift.

LD 849 passed in amended form, was signed by Gov. Paul LePage and is the driving force behind the current revenue sharing controversy.

We’ve heard plenty of criticism of politicians who were against a given position before they were for it, and this case is no different.

A 2009 video of Mayor LePage at a Waterville city council meeting shows him railing against then-Gov. John Baldacci for eliminating revenue sharing and “sticking it to the property taxpayer.” So why is LePage doing exactly the same thing now?

The worst effects of LD 849 will most likely be eliminated by the incoming Democratic majorities of the 126th Legislature.

Bruce Hixon


BDN information gathering

I emailed the BDN about its request for the names and addresses of concealed carry permit holders. I received a canned response quickly, stating the BDN has no intention of publishing this information.

The response also stated, “The BDN has no intention to release this information publicly.” It intends to use this information, along with other information gathered, to analyze possible correlations and trends relevant to reporting projects.

Why does the paper need our names and addresses then? If it is looking for demographics, why not ask for that information only?

Let’s do quid pro quo. I’ll let you publish my name and address if you publish a random BDN employee’s name, address, sexual orientation, religion, political affiliation or some other information that’s none of my business.

Scott Englund


Phone bill

This is in response to the BDN piece, “Bill to yank cellphones from Maine drivers’ hands encounters scant opposition” that ran Feb. 14 regarding the bill about cell phones.

How are the lawmakers to make an exception for state and city workers? Are they really above the law? How did they communicate before phones and pagers?

They found a payphone and pulled over to check in. If this bill becomes law it proves that we live not in a democracy, but in a country where the people are below the law and the government is truly above the law.

Sarah Brown


Digital citizenship issues

This letter is in response to the Feb. 6 story, “Parents, educators, police address bullying at Dover-Foxcroft school.

The essence of the article must not be dismissed. Any academic environment with students will have a presence of bullying. The perception of the situation is present.

How educators, parents, stakeholders and administration address the issue is how the problem

will be solved.

The flaming digital war and comments are better reserved for the school board meetings and community nights. The philosophy of the community raising a child is needed more than ever in this 21st century digital environment.

In spite of these “bullying issues,” the people who tend to have the largest problems with the school environment are absent from the board meetings where the first 15 minutes are reserved for public comment.

Hiding behind a computer, targeting past administration no longer present, and performing and acting with poor digital citizenship only contribute to the problem rather than the solution.

Amele Nason


Fellowship for overeaters

Recently, I read about the grand opening of “The Barn,” located at 142 Center St., Brewer, and something caught my eye for those suffering from struggling with the commitments we make to stay on a diet, exercise and be healthier.

There was a notice that stated on Saturday, Feb. 23, from noon to 3 p.m., there would be an Overeaters Anonymous gathering referred to as “Unity Day.” The day will include a guest speaker, fellow members of the local and statewide Overeaters Anonymous.

Anyone looking for more information was directed to call Tom at 735-3908.

The announcement prompted me to ask what is OA? Go to www.oa.org. Overeaters Anonymous is a fellowship of compulsive overeaters who practice a 12-step program based on the Alcoholics Anonymous program of recovery.

Just as alcoholics join AA to stop drinking alcohol, people join OA to stop eating compulsively.

Also people statewide can call 211 for a support group for many health-related issues.

Linda H. Grant


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