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Thursday’s Letters to the Editor

A failure to plan

EDITOR: There seemed to be a time in the distant past when planners looked to the future. In 1958, seeing and preparing for the growth and expansion of Sonoma and Mendocino counties, that foresight gave the community Lake Mendocino. Families, industries and business have grown into larger and larger communities. Every year more and more come here.

Despite current needs and the needs of the next 20, 50, 75 years, it is said that upgrading, expanding, dredging a larger capacity of water for Lake Mendocino wouldn’t deliver the bang for the buck.

How did this lifestyle become our way? When and what will make the water needs of the expansion of our communities worth it? When the water supply was originally planned, was it worth the bang for the buck? Are they waiting for higher interest rates and labor and equipment costs to get more corporate value while climate change reduces water availability?

State and federal funds aid these necessary improvements. Does wealth and Wall Street’s mentality control every aspect of government? With this attitude, Lake Mendocino may not have been here.

DAVID POLLIN

Willits

Tie votes, funding

EDITOR: What do you think of this? If your legislator votes for a funding bill, such as the infrastructure or Build Back Better legislation, you benefit from the program’s funding. If they vote against it, no money would go to their state or district.

It has happened before and will happen this time: senators and representatives vote against popular bills that institute or enhance programs to improve quality of life, because they are in lockstep with their party, then they go back to their constituents and brag about the good things they have brought to their voters. No amount of finger-pointing and outing shames these politicians whose primary concern is always getting reelected and keeping their party in power.

I realize this approach cannot be done, but it would be a just thing to do, wouldn’t it? The voters have the power to elect legislators who will have their best interests in mind and who will vote for them. It is incumbent on every voter to become informed and select their representatives to Congress wisely.

PAMELA TENNANT

Sebastopol

Understanding vaccines

EDITOR: Many of the letters from anti-vaxers make this fallacious point: since some vaccinated people are still getting COVID, the vaccines do not work. OK, let’s look at the math. If the vaccines are 95% effective and 100 people are vaccinated, five will probably get COVID. That is simple math and is right in line with what is to be expected. In no way does this indicate the vaccines don’t work. Also, there have been virtually no deaths among vaccinated people who got COVID. ln my opinion, the anti-vaxers are selfish and ignorant. They put the rest of us in danger.

E.J. McVEY

Santa Rosa

The cost factor

EDITOR: Jonathan McClelland is correct in that electric cars are the answer to outrageous gas prices, but he forgets that the average family, with husband and wife each working, just trying to make their mortgage every month, let alone put food on their table and support kids, is not going to just go down to their local car dealership and purchase a new vehicle (“Time to go electric,” Letters, Nov. 15).

Additionally, now that you own an electric car, where are you going to charge it every day? I guess McClelland hasn’t looked at his PG&E bill since he bought his electric car.

Electric cars are great, but they also have great price tags attached to them, let alone insurance, maintenance and license tags. Auto manufacturers are trying to compensate for the high cost of gasoline by manufacturing more hybrids. At least with a hybrid, if you have to donate an arm and/or a leg to fill your tank, your gas mileage is making the purchase worthwhile.

When the demand for electric cars outweighs that of hybrids or gas-fueled cars, and the price drops significantly, maybe I will consider one.

CAROLE I. HUYGEN

Rohnert Park

No labor shortage

EDITOR: In respectful disagreement with the Nov. 14 article on housing, there is no shortage of construction workers to build housing (“Greater challenges for region’s housing crisis”). Like many other industries, residential developers have prioritized higher profit margins over paying wages that make it possible for construction workers building those homes to have a dignified life in the local area.

The North Bay Building Trades Council — and others around the state — have pushed back on this intolerable business model for years. We have pointed out that paying workers per day or piece rates is socially and economically unsustainable. COVID and other economic stressors have brought those warnings to fruition.

The North Bay Building Trades Council and our 18 affiliated trades have ample manpower to provide residential housing developers with a skilled and trained workforce that will move their projects forward in a timely manner. Developers need only avail themselves of this locally based workforce.

When they do, they will find they have more than enough construction craftworkers to build their projects. If we want the North Bay to be a stronger, more equitable community, we need to ensure developers aren’t making their profits on the backs of an exploited, unskilled workforce.

CHERIE CABRAL

North Bay Building and Construction Trades Council

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