Letters to the Editor

5/03 Letters: Bill pushed by Duke Energy will cost customers

Say ‘no’ to Duke

Regarding “Good for planning ahead or padding profits? Critics fight a plan for Duke Energy rates” (April 29):

Sen. Dan Blue is right when he says NC WARN is desperate to stop Senate Bill 559.

Duke Energy plans 8 percent renewable energy by 2033, while other utilities are already at 30 percent or more, and Duke is building a fleet of new fracked gas-burning power plants even as scientists say we have 12 years to cut our carbon emissions in half or risk climate catastrophe.

If you’re not desperate, you’re not paying attention.

The bill, sponsored by Blue and other recipients of Duke Energy campaign donations, would make it easier for the monopoly utility to raise customer rates and could force customers to pay billions for coal ash and other corporate mistakes.

In seeking a multi-year rate plan, Duke has cherry-picked a single part of a larger set of rate-making tools. The other piece is performance incentives that reward utilities for achieving goals important to customers, such as reducing peak demand.

But Duke uses high demand as an excuse for building more gas plants. No wonder the bill leaves that part out.

If Duke had a good plan, it would not have been rolled out in such a rush. Let’s have a full discussion, with consumer advocates at the table.

Sally Robertson, Durham

Solar Projects Coordinator, NC WARN

Zane is deflecting

Regarding “Sheriffs opposed to ICE detention put politics ahead of safety” (April 30 Opinion)

J. Peder Zane implies that sheriffs are turning loose illegal immigrants who commit rape, deal drugs, etc. all because the sheriffs do not want to cooperate with ICE.

I propose that is not why they are turned loose. I propose that the persons would be turned loose no matter their legal status.

So, Zane really has a beef with the judicial system not the sheriffs themselves. His hyperbole argument deflects the real issue.

Daryl T. Bowman, Raleigh

Sports or academics?

Regarding “At a crossroads, ECU must choose its next path,” (April 28 Opinion): The entire UNC System needs to choose its next path – sports titles or academics.

It cannot serve both.

Marcus Henry, Reidsville

Eliminate DMV fee

I recently made a payment to the DMV for registration and property tax on my boat trailer. Whether payment was made by credit or check, I was charged a $3 fee.

From now on, I will send a check through the U.S. Postal Service.

Why does the DMV have to pay an outside vendor, Payit, to process payments for property taxes and registrations?

This does nothing to save people time waiting in line at the DMV and passes the costs on to tax-paying citizens.

Perhaps the lines and wait-times at DMV offices would be better if DMV simply hired more qualified help at a decent wage instead of charging citizens unnecessary fees on top of ridiculous taxes.

I hope more N.C. citizens feel the same as I do and will use the U.S. Postal Service.

Robert Wovoris Sr., Youngsville

Ban drug ads on TV

There is a great amount of talk about the cost of drugs today.

We don’t have tobacco ads or alcohol ads on television, but the drug companies flood us with ads daily.

Why are they allowed to spend billions on ads that tell us to talk to our doctors to see if this drug will help us?

If cigarette ads are banned on TV, why not drug ads? Seems to me the cost savings could go toward lowering the cost of drugs.

My doctor does – and should – know what I need, or are doctors part of the problem?

Don Shupe, Franklinton

Guantanamo costly

Regarding “US preparing for detainees to die of old age at Guantanamo Bay” (April 28):

The American taxpayer deserves to know the true cost of operating the Guantanamo prison.

During the Obama administration, the annual cost when there were 166 inmates was $1 million-plus per prisoner.

Today, with only 40 prisoners remaining, the annual cost is over $10 million per prisoner.

According to recent article in the N&O, the Trump administration has plans to keep the prison open for 25 more years and spend an additional $88.5 million on upgrading it in order to provide better care for the prisoners as they age and require additional health care and hospice services.

Why should the American taxpayer continue to support Guantanamo? At what inmate level does the annual cost become ridiculous?

There is a good argument that it already has.

John Bridgers, Fuquay-Varina