Letters to the Editor for Jan. 12, 2012


Published: Thursday, January 12, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 10, 2012 at 10:23 p.m.

If you care about your city, then vote

Almost daily on these pages we see strong opinions chastising or defending the policies of our local elected commissions. On Jan. 31, voters in the city of Gainesville have a chance to render their true opinion by voting.

Last election cycle there were similar passions expressed but, in spite of this, the single member district had just over 20 percent turn out while the at-large seat had less than 12 percent; hardly a mandate for either side. The last mayoral race was decided on just a handful of votes.

Real change will only happen if those who, for what ever reason, have been on the sidelines decide to exercise their right and, I would argue, their duty to vote. The future of our communities and nation as a whole has always rested in the hands of those making decisions in the present. What will yours be?

John Martin,

Hawthorne

Biomass keeps our money here at home

It was nice to see the GRU response over the weekend regarding biomass financials. What GRU customers and anti-biomassers should contemplate, is that for every dollar it costs GRU to provide electricity, 70 cents goes to fuel.

That 70 cents not only goes out of state, it ends up in the coffers of giant conglomerates that, in turn, have hedge funds and global investors as their shareholders. With the biomass plant, that changes fundamentally.

And yes, using biomass will increase the electric rate. But the difference between all the fuel money going far away or staying around is huge. This is what makes biomass a financial winner for the community; over the next 30 years it will redirect close to $1 billion to people who live among us.

A nice amount to keep around.

Mark van Soestbergen,

Gainesvillle

ER visits don't run up health care costs

In response to “Rethinking emergency care at the core of health law” (Jan. 8):

The nation needs a strong primary health care system, and emergency physicians are committed to reducing health care costs. However, emergency care represents less than 2 percent of the nation's health care dollar, and the vast majority (92 percent) of emergency patients need care within 24 hours or after hours when doctors' offices are closed.

In addition, a 2011 poll of emergency physicians found that 97 percent of those emergency physicians reported treating patients on a daily basis who were referred by primary care doctors. This goes directly against the assumption that people are choosing to go the ER instead of seeking primary care.

It is time to stop focusing on preventing emergency visits and to start supporting this valuable emergency care system that is everyone's safety net in their hour of need.

David Seaberg, MD,

President,

American College of

Emergency Physicians

Chattanooga, TN

An endless cycle

In response to The Sun's Jan 5 article, “Catching, selling Silver River monkeys is lucrative”: I'd like to suggest that the Florida Park Service and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission do their homework.

Vivisection is a lucrative industry, and this adds up to an endless cycle that keeps the researchers employed at the expense of taxpayers.

It's typical of agencies that are supposed to be protecting animals to be the very agencies that punish animals; all for lack of good human judgment. Just look at the livestock at Paynes Prairie.

Sharon Nataline,

Alachua

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