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Opinion >  Letters

Letters for Oct. 28, 2022

Oct. 28, 2022 Updated Fri., Oct. 28, 2022 at 8:22 a.m.

We need that 13th judge

Spokane County desperately needs additional Superior Court judges to hear languishing cases. In 1997, the state Legislature approved a 13th position, including paying one half of the judge’s salary and benefits. Only the commitment to fund the balance of that position by the County Commission is required. It is that simple and bipartisan.

Despite a large population growth and repeated court requests, the commissioners have turned a deaf ear. Two sitting commissioners refused to commit to fund the 13th judge.

Commissioner Mary Kuney made a disingenuous statement requiring knowing the costs before making a commitment. Commissioner Kuney is a CPA. She was chief deputy auditor for three years and she has been a commissioner since 2017. The costs have been repeatedly presented to the commissioners. Respectfully, she need only look at the budget for each of the other 12 judges.

Commissioner Al French stated it will cost $900,000 and there is no room in the courthouse. Commissioner French overstates cost by at least three times. He argues he is just a landlord and does not know where to put the courtroom. Extensive studies have been done answering his question. He just does not like the answers. The courthouse for years has been overcrowded and numerous departments are going to have to be relocated. That is the job of a commissioner.

As voters, we can reject such baloney arguments from sitting commissioners by not voting for either without their commitment to fund the 13th judge.

Matthew Andersen

Spokane

The IRS and GOP scare tactics

In 2021, the IRS answered 11% of your phone calls. IRS funding has been gutted since 2010 due to relentless budget cuts.

The county with the highest audit rate is Humphreys, Mississippi, which is predominantly Black, rural and poor … relying on catfish farming.

The top five audited counties are all predominantly Black, rural and poor according to Pro Publica, whereas audit rates for wealthy Americans are the lowest in decades, costing billions in lost revenue rightfully due to the U.S. Treasury.

Auditing the wealthy with their tax loopholes and ability to hide assets is both time consuming and sophisticated. Career politicians like Idaho’s Mike Crapo and Washington’s Cathy McMorris Rodgers run fear-mongering campaign ads in order to create alarm that the IRS is coming after YOU with its new funding.

Remember who funds Crapo and McMorris Rodgers’ campaigns and who they really do not want the IRS to audit. Please vote for candidates who support tax accountability including fairness in tax collections and in equitable audits of the wealthy.

Carol Johns

Spokane

Vote for your values

I’m writing to fellow Idahoans in an attempt to make sense of the barrage of lies, disinformation and outright hate-mongering coming from the Trump wing of the Republican party. In their ongoing attempt to sabotage our country and its institutions for naked political gain, the GOP is now fear-mongering about crime and is scapegoating and demonizing teachers, librarians, health care professionals, scientists, women, LGBTQ people, immigrants and our nonwhite friends, neighbors and work mates. Any reasonable person would conclude that they have nothing positive to offer, just division, distrust and resentment. All while claiming to be exemplary Christians, go figure.

Please take the time to learn the issues and ask which candidates better represent your values, rather than simply pushing your buttons and appealing to our collective fears and prejudices. I’ve voted in every Idaho election for the past 30 years and am solidly convinced that most Idahoans are good and decent people, unlike many of the extreme candidates that win low-turnout Republican primaries and then coast to victory and positions of power and influence in our state. Visit the websites of Democratic candidates and ask yourself whether they better represent your actual values, notably including freedom and liberty.

Chris Norden

Moscow, Idaho

Political ads spread poison

I am absolutely appalled by the personal attack ads utilized by the current political candidates! No one person is responsible for a legislative policy and a candidate is totally delusional if they think they alone are going to correct it. This poisonous disinformation is why our country is so divided. I suggest anyone with political aspirations must first take a class on what our forefathers envisioned for the leadership of this country and that their purpose is to work together toward what is best for its citizens as a whole.

Jackie Moore

Spokane

Write in Steve Johnson

When I visited with Steve Johnson, he told me what he stood for with none of the political blah blah, or the fear and smear tactics of his opponent, Scott Herndon.

Steve Johnson is passionate about education, how it boosts confidence, introduces new interests, opens doors and provides greater earnings opportunities that last a lifetime. This benefits the individual and their families, their community and North Idaho. It makes for a happier life. Herndon wants to eliminate public education and have us pay for church-based or private schools.

Steve Johnson understands we don’t have extra money to pay to educate our families, or for the tax hikes Herndon wants. “You work hard for your money,” Johnson told me, “I want you to keep every dollar possible in your wallet.”

A wise leader, Steve Johnson believes that each individual deserves the power to make decisions that affect their human rights.

Join me in writing in the voice of reason, Steve Johnson. Here’s what to do: On the ballot, under Scott Herndon’s name, there is a line for “Write In.” Write STEVE JOHNSON and fill in the bubble to the left.

Let’s vote for Steve Johnson, dedicated to our human rights and our financial/educational well being.

Dawnya Clarine

Sandpoint

Vote yes for TBD in Airway Heights

Airway Heights is a rapidly growing community with needs that can seem to outweigh any existing capacity to meet them. Securing a clean water supply, providing additional schools for the largest student population center in Cheney School District and dealing with increasing traffic congestion on an aging streets all add up to a tall order. As a former council member and mayor, I can assure you that your government is hard at work to address these matters and you can make a profound difference by supporting the Transportation Benefit District on your ballot. Allowing the more than 30,000 car trips a day through Airway Heights to help maintain our streets is a sensible and necessary means to provide for the integrated multi modal transportation network with ample access to transit that we all need. Vote yes for the TBD in Airway Heights.

Sonny Weathers

Medical Lake



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