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<b>No more years</b>

EDITOR: There's a rumor circulating that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is telling his colleagues that the top priority for Republicans over the next four years is to deny Barack Obama a third term. And, by golly, this time I think we're gonna do it!

BILL TURNER

Forestville

<b>A west side candidate</b>

EDITOR: I agree with your Saturday editorial ("Find west SR Resident for council seat"). After Susan Gorin steps down to take her seat on the Board of Supervisors, the new Santa Rosa City Council must agree on an appointment to fill her vacated position. They do not have to look too far to find someone who lives west of Highway 101 and came in fifth in the election. Don Taylor should be appointed to the council to fill that seat.

Not only did he get more than 19,000 votes in the election, but his service to the community as a former planning commissioner, Community Advisory Board member, Railroad Square merchant and too many other community service/volunteer activities to mention makes him the ideal person for the job.

DAVID G. JOHNSON

Santa Rosa

<b>Safety at risk</b>

EDITOR: Residents in the Rancho Adobe Fire Protection District (Cotati, Penngrove and Liberty Valley) are less safe because the voters didn't feel that fire protection was a priority and didn't support Measure Z.

Now, one of the three stations will be browned out on a rotating basis. This will cause longer response times and a reduction in service. This also may affect our insurance rating, resulting in an increase in insurance premiums for our homes and businesses.

Is the $60 a year, $5 a month, 16 cents a day the voters have saved in increased taxes worth your home or your loved ones' safety?

We will see.

LISA and RAYCHEL ADAMS

Cotati

<b>Focused on patients</b>

EDITOR: In response to the letter defending the nurses at Memorial Hospital being provided with adequate staffing, benefits and compensation ("Nurses' value," Letters, Saturday), I feel prompted to defend all employees of all hospitals in Sonoma County.

It is not only the nurses who are care providers. Each employee plays a vital part — be it one in housekeeping, one in the kitchen or a technologist who performs an important diagnostic exam that will ultimately aid a patient's diagnosis.

I, myself, am a strong and capable professional who loves my job. I strive each day to treat each patient as I would want a family member of my own treated. It can mean so much to a patient to find comfort from an employee who will go the extra mile just for you. I am also required to be responsible for education and certification just like the nurses.

Above all else, be it staffing or compensation, remember one thing: It is all of us who take care of the patients, not just the nurses. And we, too, promise to be there regardless of weather, the hour or the feelings. After all, the focus should be the patients.

ELLEN PALMER

Registered diagnostic medical sonographer

Santa Rosa

<b>Filling council vacancy</b>

EDITOR: With regard to replacing Supervisor-elect Susan Gorin on the Santa Rosa City Council, I wish to advocate for the appointment of Caroline Ba?elos, who essentially finished in a tie for fifth place in the election.

As former County Supervisor Bill Kortum has noted, "Caroline's years on the Planning Commission, making decisions on Santa Rosa's future, have prepared her to be a strong leader on the City Council the day she takes office." In addition, she has abundant community involvement experience and would provide increased representation for a sizable Latino population that has historically been grossly underrepresented on the City Council. In this latter regard, increased minority representation would lessen the likelihood that Santa Rosa could face a costly civil rights lawsuit following the defeat of Measure Q, which would have instituted district elections within the city.

Aside from such potential legal ramifications, the recently concluded presidential election has once again affirmed that inclusion is a better way forward politically.

DAVID PETRITZ

Santa Rosa