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Bungled vaccine process

Have senior citizens tried to make an appointment for your COVID vaccination? I first tried online and after filling in six or seven pages received the note that no more appointments were available. Try again next week. Then it was suggested that I try calling Monday afternoon at 2 p.m.

Well I did so for 40 minutes, only to hear at each try: “We’re sorry but all circuits are busy now, please try your call later.” And they wonder why we are not getting vaccinated? The geniuses who set this registration method up really deserve credit. Never has anything been so bungled.

What do they propose now?

James Moore

Milford

Collins’ PPP leadership

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), co-authored by Sen. Susan Collins, has been a lifesaver to small businesses and nonprofits across our state.

Maine has received over $2.3 billion in PPP loans — with one of the highest approval rates (per capita) in the country — since Congress first passed the Paycheck Protection Program back in March 2020. These loans have been made to local businesses, restaurants, nonprofits, churches and medical and dental clinics, just to name a few — helping many keep employees working, pay their bills, and stay open for business.

Large or small, the loans have clearly made a difference for Maine people.

As a former banker and state legislator, I am grateful for Collins’ authorship of the Paycheck Protection Program. In the face of a national crisis, her swift action has helped save more than 28,000 small businesses and helped sustain over 250,000 jobs in Maine. As we continue to move through the devastating COVID-19 pandemic, a second round of PPP funds is on its way to help struggling businesses and workers, as well as boost our local economy.

I commend Collins for her leadership during this difficult time and I am grateful she is

our senator in Washington.

Jayne Crosby Giles

Belfast

My kind of Republican Party

I agree with Matt Gagnon in the Jan. 21 column, “ How Biden can unify U.S.,” regarding the need for bipartisan solutions to the multiple problems the Biden administration and Congress face. However, climate change is one bipartisan problem Gagnon omits, even though Biden has emphasized it.

Climate change already costs this country hundreds of billions of dollars every year in recovery from wildfires, floods, and wild wind storms. If it continues its trajectory, costs will rise every decade, as rising seas flood every coastal community.

George Shultz, of Ronald Reagan’s cabinet, has already proposed the first and essential solution to the climate conundrum. It is carbon pollution pricing, which returns all revenues via equal monthly Carbon Dividend checks to all taxpayers. The plan is supported by 3,589 U.S. economists, including Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. They believe this will incentivize U.S. innovators to compete in a global market for clean energy.

The Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act is a bill that lays out the plan’s details. It was drafted and introduced to the House in 2019 by the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus. It will be reintroduced in the House and Senate this year.

President Joe Biden has his work cut out. And concurrently so does the Republican Party, transforming itself from a party recently focused on appointing judges, to a party that sees the U.S. as world leader again, tackling every issue: climate change, COVID, reviving the economy, addressing racial and economic inequities, and international cooperation with bipartisan fervor. That’s my kind of Republican Party.

Peter Garrett

Maine State Coordinator

Citizens Climate Lobby

Winslow