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Medicare for all

EDITOR: Medical decisions should be made by the patient and physician, not insurers. Payment should be made by the government and the patient. Obamacare gives all the power to the insurance industry. It doesn’t control drug prices, and it inflates the cost of medical equipment.

America needs a government-run single-payer system with price control on drugs and medical equipment. Then we will have affordable care. Eliminate insurance, fix drug and equipment prices, have a tax that is only for medical care, and give us Medicare for all.

DR. ROGER DELGADO

Sebastopol

Food drive

EDITOR: Today is the 25th National Association of Letter Carriers’ Food Drive. Over the past 25 years, we have collected more than 1 billion pounds of food nationwide. Last year alone, letter carriers picked up 80 million pounds of food that stayed in local neighborhoods. Despite this grand effort, in the North Bay Region alone, 82,000 people still struggle with hunger every year, including children, seniors and families.

Here in Sonoma County, letter carriers collect food during the summer, when many kids aren’t getting healthy meals at school. Today, your mail carrier would be happy to pick up donations of nonperishable foods: peanut butter, tuna, beans and other nutritious food. All you have to do is leave a bag or a few cans next to your mailbox, and your mail carrier will pick it up to take to your local food bank or pantry.

We hope that you will join us in this worthy cause. Every little bit helps.

LINDA JAMES

Food drive coordinator, National Association of Letter Carriers Branch 18

Equivocating on C

EDITOR: I read with interest Sunday’s Close to Home column by Santa Rosa Vice-Mayor Jack Tibbetts and Jenni Klose supporting Measure C while also addressing the unintended consequences of its passage (“Yes on Measure C, but there’s a middle ground”). While I appreciate their effort to reach out for a middle ground, I don’t believe their proposed solution works.

They accurately point out that the proposed ordinance coming before the voters in Measure C would likely have negative unintended consequences. They have some suggested solutions to those consequences. First, one has to ask, if you are aware of the negative consequences and acknowledge them, how can you call them “unintended”? If aware of them, why weren’t they addressed in the drafting of the ordinance?

As concerning as that fact is, even more concerning is the recommended solution to these problems. They say the City Council should just revisit rent control in two years and change it or discontinue it.

What are the chances that in two years’ time a future council will want to deal with the issue? Particularly when the easy response to critics is: “The public voted on it, who am I to go against their wishes?”

There is a difference between reaching for a middle ground and equivocating.

SCOTT BARTLEY

Santa Rosa

Recycling fees

EDITOR: I live in Guerneville and used to return my yearly CRV material —bottles and cans sold with a recycling deposit — behind the Safeway store, but I was told it has closed. I tried looking online for another convenient location. After a long search, I found there weren’t any. I tried West Coast Metals, a listed CRV site, and was told they only accept 50 bottles on any single visit. That’s hardly worth the long drive. I feel as if California is charging for an unfair program if getting a refund is this difficult. Am I alone in this belief?

CHARLES MYERS

Guerneville

Vulnerable renters

EDITOR: I have lived in the same Santa Rosa apartment complex for 15 years. Inspectors recently went through all 130 apartments in the complex. These individuals walked through my home, making notes and speaking to one another about possible upgrades as though I wasn’t in the room, and they were at a loss for words when I asked if their plans would allow my husband and me to continue living here.

In the years prior to Measure C, rents in this complex increased considerably. Neighbors who had lived here for several years were evicted, after which upgrades were made to thee apartments they had lived in. Some hefty increases to the rents were also made during that time.

The inspectors who came through our home clearly had an agenda that had nothing to do with us, the people who live here.

Measure C may not be perfect, but it would give renters some measure of protection if the owners of apartment complexes decided to evict people in order to rent the units — our homes — for significantly more money.

If it doesn’t pass, we, the tenants in this complex and others like it, are vulnerable to evictions without just cause.

Please consider this information as you vote on Measure C.

WENDY WOODS

Santa Rosa

SMART crossings

EDITOR: I am all for the SMART train to help reduce traffic on our roads and provide greener transportation. However, closing the roads at rail crossings needs to be better synchronized with the trains.

I was in Petaluma at the East Washington Street crossing, and the train was stationary beyond the street and the cross arms were still down. Traffic backed up in all directions for several minutes. Other cities have dialed in on the timing and promptly raise and lower the cross arms to minimize disruption to traffic.

SMART will have to reduce the amount of time that cars have to sit idle when the train is not at the crossing or drivers are going build resentment sitting in snarled traffic.

NORMAN VACHON

Windsor