Letters, Dec. 8

Dec. 07, 2012 @ 08:23 PM

Don’t cut assistance to poor people

Members of Congress are currently negotiating to find a way to reduce our nation’s deficit and adopt a budget.

It is essential that programs for the poor are protected in any final agreement. These include WIC, SNAP (formerly food stamps), the Earned Income Tax Credit, and the Child Tax Credit. Cutting programs that help poor people will not reduce our deficits, but it would have a devastating impact on the most vulnerable members of our society.

Such cuts would actually cost our economy more in lost productivity for adults, reduced educational outcomes for children, and increased health care costs for all ages lacking sufficient nutrition.

Information from Bread for the World, a collective Christian voice urging our nation’s decision makers to end hunger at home and abroad, indicates that nearly half of SNAP participants nationwide in 2010 were children, and another 8 percent were adults 60 or older. In 2011, 17.9 percent of North Carolina’s adults and 30.3 percent of children under 5 lived in households with incomes below the poverty level.

Congress must find a solution to our budget problem that includes tax increases for those who can afford to pay more, and spending cuts in programs serving people who are not poor. And it must maintain a circle of protection for programs that help poor people provide food for their families.

Gail McKinnis
Bread for the World member
Chapel Hill


Good business practices

On the first weekend in November my spouse and I visited Durham. On the Sunday morning before going to brunch, I went to a car wash to clean my truck. The vending machine malfunctioned and I lost $1.50 in the machine. I was a little annoyed and left my business card with a note, “you owe me $1.50.” To my surprise, several weeks later I received a letter with two $1 bills enclosed.

The proprietor of Four Seasons Wash Solutions, 4602 Bennett Memorial Road, displayed impeccable integrity. When I left my card I never really expected to receive anything. This owner has validated my belief in honest business practices.

Peter Drucker wrote that the purpose of a business is to get and keep customers. My best wishes go out to Four Seasons Wash Solutions. That is a wonderful example for all during these austere times in our country and the world.

A.O. Gaston
Upper Marlboro, Md.


Throw standards ‘under the bus’?

Will Durham citizens be burdened with widening N.C. 751 South by local government reluctant to “just say no” to developers bent on high-density projects in south Durham County? Are our elected officials ignoring previous site development standards on which many already built homes in this area depend to retain their value?

Thought and time went into the 2005 city and county planning consensus that agreed on no more than four residential units per acre in this area between I-40 and Chatham County.

The proposed Southpointe Trails high density housing (164 townhouses on 29 acres -- nearly six dwellings per acre) on N.C. 751 South next to Massey Chapel would contradict space standards and overload a “hotspot” on 751. This 29-acre plot would add at minimum 656 more vehicle trips per day on a busy narrow two-lane pavement (2012 census shows average two cars per household; 164 times two, times two trips per day). Add in vehicle trips to service air conditioners, plumbing, lawns, etc. – all part of housing.

Commuters like myself already wait and worry getting on and off 751 from our existing subdivisions, surrounded by impatient drivers in both lanes especially as they approach and leave 751’s Renaissance Parkway traffic light, complicated now by traffic into “Westpointe on 751” -- Aldi, Bonefish Grill, future hotels, etc.

One exception spawns another; eventually you’ve thrown zoning and planning under the bus.

Donna Rudolph


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