Tuesday, October 22, 2013: Education, wind energy, and thanks for Bangor PD

Posted Oct. 21, 2013, at 4:33 p.m.

Support RSU 24

Local costs for education in Hancock have been affected by both a drastic increase in state valuation and an expected increased mill rate. The state funding for education in Hancock has decreased from $774,019 to $186,933 over the past five years, a loss of $587,086. Since RSU 24 has been in operation, the cumulative budget savings to the communities participating is $9,533,373.

From 2008-2009 to present, about three positions have been reduced. In fact, the only positions that were eliminated were a few ed techs (they were positions for specific children who no longer needed them), and one was added, a position in the library.

If the intent of the Hancock citizens group is to “restore” art or music to a full-time position instead of what is now several days a week, it would cost Hancock taxpayers another $25,000 or more per teaching position.

Enrollment at Hancock Grammar School has gone down about 10 percent. However a drop in enrollment does not translate to fewer classroom teachers because we would still need to hire teachers for first and second grades, etc. The operating costs remain (heating, utilities). Again, we need to contribute a percentage of teacher and administrative salaries to retirement costs. The RSU consolidation provides for fewer administrators, therefore less cost.

Please look at the facts, not just the allegations made by a few in the community.

Mary Cahoon

Hancock

Challenging opinion

Addressing the teaching of liberalism that Jacob Gran seems to admonish in his Oct. 16 letter, he has already made up his political mind to follow whomever was his teacher. Having not yet reached young adulthood, he is still learning. He has obviously been taught the tenets of conservatism most likely by his parents, his religious leader or those people associated with those teachers.

There is no requirement that high school students adopt any person’s political leanings. They must, however, be exposed to many options so that they are able to decide for themselves. Too often youth are subjected to myopic beliefs and superstitions with such consistency that they are forced to accept those opinions as sacrosanct.

In Gran’s own admonition style to parents: It is imperative to raise your children to think for themselves. They must be exposed to many ideas if they are to determine their own success. Teachers who challenge staid opinions are expanding horizons and must be congratulated. That is the job of a teacher. To elicit the reaction of a letter to the editor by a student means that the teacher is acting professionally (note the root “profess”). The student is in fact being taught of ideas other than those of which he was inundated to that point.

It is the student’s job, not the parents’, nor the instructor’s, to develop the belief systems by which he/she will live and treat others.

Ed Barrood

Orrington

Offshore doubt

We, the people of Maine, are being played as dolts and hicks at the hands of our own U.S. government, the environmental movement, and foreign entities such as Statoil and Iberdrola.

The people of Maine are not going to profit from building onshore or offshore wind generators. The parts for these behemoths are mostly built in Europe or China (no Maine jobs) and are maintained by a small number of people.

Statoil did not bolt because of Gov. Paul LePage’s actions. The company left because of the prospect of government subsidies drying up. That’s the way it should be: Operate your business with your own investments, so it stands on its own, or get out.

LePage argues that we pay too much for energy in Maine, and adding wind will increase our rates even higher, chasing more businesses and jobs away. European nations staked their whole economy on green energy and have now realized they just defaced their landscape and raised their rates to levels that make them uncompetitive.

Iberdrola is a Spanish company that broke the back of the economy in Spain with wind; Spain’s unemployment rate is near 30 percent.

Iberdrola made the decision to come to a friendlier place: Maine. They are going to do the same thing to us here. We are being treated as the dolts they think we are.

James J. Lutz

Bangor

Vote for Bev

I grew up in Brewer and have chosen to remain here as a resident. I’m supporting Bev Uhlenhake for Brewer City Council, and I urge my fellow Brewer residents to do the same.

Uhlenhake is exactly the council member I have been waiting for to run in my city. She is smart, driven and sincerely wants to help the citizens of Brewer. She has the experience needed as well as fresh ideas. She is currently vice chair of the Brewer Planning Board and a member of the Comprehensive Planning Committee. Along with being a broker at Epstein Commercial Real Estate, Uhlenhake has been active in numerous other roles for Brewer.

In addition to her professional life, I’ve known Uhlenhake personally for 16 years. She is one of the most compassionate, understanding people I have ever met.

As a business owner in Brewer myself, I have confidence Uhlenhake is going to help develop Brewer into a powerhouse city. I wholeheartedly support Uhlenhake for city council and encourage you all to vote and support this amazing lady.

Christine Longtin

Brewer

Kudos, Bangor police

I was in Bangor this past week with a friend shopping at Kohl’s department store, and my friend was paged to the parking area where a lady had hit my friend’s car and smashed the back end quite bad. We called the Bangor Police Department, and a young man named Jason Linkletter came and wrote out a report.

His mannerism and professionalism proved to us that he was a very valuable member of the Bangor Police Department. He was very kind to all parties involved. A big thank you to Jason for his kindness to us.

Joyce Valleau

Halifax, Nova Scotia

http://bangordailynews.com/2013/10/21/opinion/tuesday-october-22-2013-education-wind-energy-and-thanks-for-bangor-pd/ printed on August 1, 2014