Viewpoints

Wed
15
Nov

Letter to the Editor: My friend, Jeannie Hegeman

To the Editor:

I met Jeannie Hegeman when I was a young campaign staffer wandering the roads of Waukon. Far from my home in southern California, I was assigned to work in Allamakee County for then-Senator Barack Obama’s underdog campaign in the Iowa Caucus.

With Hillary Clinton expected to dominate the upcoming election, my boss said we had no chance of winning Allamakee and that I should focus instead on simply holding the line. Our campaign diverted many of its valuable resources to other counties where our prospects were stronger. As a result, I spent much of my time commuting alone from our nearest office in Clayton County, spending long hours driving and calling voters from the car.

Wed
15
Nov

Letter to the Editor: Endowment funds build greater good for nonprofits

To the Editor:

Allamakee Scholarship Fund, Inc., one of the first nonprofit organizations to establish an endowment within the Allamakee County Community Foundation, received its first endowment gift of $3,300 in 2008.

Since then, donors have helped grow the fund to promote area education. The nonprofit receives an annual payout of five percent of the average fund balance to help sustain its important mission. These annual payouts will continue and be a source of support it can rely on forever.

Allamakee Scholarship Fund, Inc. is not alone. In Allamakee County, dedicated forward-focused board members have established permanent funds which preserve area history, education and health. This year, these funds paid out more than $17,000 to provide long-term support for local organizations.

Wed
15
Nov

Letter to the Editor: An open letter to the residents of the Driftless Area

To the Editor:

Our home is under yet another major environmental threat. A huge cattle feedlot operation is being enlarged just east of Monona adjacent to U.S. Highway 18.

This factory farm will be constructed on 48 acres, will house 10,000 head of cattle at one time - 20,000 per year, will house a lagoon of 39 million gallons of manure, will have two 620-foot deep wells pumping 22 million gallons of water out of our precious aquifer, annually.

This massive feedlot will be built in the watershed of our beautiful cold water trout stream of Bloody Run. The air pollution could be unfathomable. From the history of these size manure lagoons, it’s not if it will spill, but when it will spill. There are many sinkholes in this watershed, which are direct conduits to our aquifer.

Waltz Energy Limited Liability Company of West Des Moines is a big ag-industry corporate player who has our politicians and government bureaucrats in their back pocket.

Wed
15
Nov

Letter to the Editor: Concerns with Republican tax plan

To the Editor:

I am concerned about Representative Rod Blum and the Republican/Trump tax plan. Rep. Blum supports the tax plan, stating it will “lower taxes for hardworking American families.” Whom is he talking about?

While the tax plan claims to benefit the middle class, the truth is it will provide massive cuts to wealthy individuals and corporations. The top 20% of the U.S. taxpayers will receive 86% of all tax cuts.

How many in Allamakee County are earning more than $149,400 in 2017? In addition, 12.5% of Iowans will get a tax increase.

And what about “everyman” Rod Blum? He is one of the 50 wealthiest congressmen, worth 15.4 million. He will benefit the most!

Sincerely,
Ann Hart
Waukon

 

Wed
15
Nov

Letter to the Editor: Prediction

To the Editor:

Tuesday, November 7 we had our elections. The Democrats won the governorship of New Jersey and Virginia. I will predict that at the end of their four-year term both states will be a mess, like all the states that have Democrats as governors. Crime will go up and they will plunge into big debt.

Now that being said, the Republican party is in deep doodoo - and until they drain the swamps completely, why would you ever support the National Republican party?

Trump is the best thing that happened to the USA in years - if he was to run today for the presidency, he would win by an even bigger margin. The abuse that he is taking from the fake media is terrible. He needs our prayers and support now.

Wed
08
Nov

And then I wrote...

by Dick Schilling, "Editor Emeritus"

... that it is said that a person’s attitude toward something is often based on past experiences with that something. Which may explain why I do not understand nor appreciate the increasing attention being given Halloween. It seems to me that it has gone from a religious observance (All Hallows Eve) to a national holiday with all the accompanying celebrations, merchandising, and, worst of all “beggar’s night.”

I can only recall two experiences with trick or treating. The first was when we lived in west Waukon and my playmate Larry Joe and I went, about six or seven, accompanied by our mothers. It was cold with alternating rain and snow, and was cut short because we were all miserable. The second was after we moved to south Waukon, and “treats” included popcorn balls and wrinkled apples.

When did the bigger deal begin and why has it grown?

Wed
08
Nov

Letter to the Editor: CHIP program and healthcare for children

To the Editor:

Together, Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program provide critical health coverage to Iowa children. Working hand-in-hand, they have helped our state achieve an historic share of covered kids: more than 97 percent. Medicaid and CHIP - called hawk-i in Iowa - cover 28% of children in Allamakee County.

These two programs are a lifeline for working families. They cover developmental, vision and hearing screenings and treatment for illness or injury. They cover newborns, foster youth and children with disabilities. Kids who have health coverage do better in school, are more likely to graduate, go onto college and earn higher wages.

Wed
08
Nov

Letter to the Editor: Truly a grand night

To the Editor:

Iowa was on display tonight at Waukon High. The best fair in the nation was the backdrop for family drama, high competition, forbidden love, and adventure in Des Moines. “State Fair,” the musical came to life after an 18-year hiatus educating a new generation to the delights of mincemeat and midway mischief.

Nathan Smith and Katelyn Leiran were perfectly parently as Abel and Melissa Frakes. Carley Sweeney had a sweet sway as Margy and Micah Treptau strutted confidence as young Wayne.  Oonagh Ahouse had great presence as the sassy torch singer Emily and Denzel Decker was fun to watch as the conflicted correspondent.  Special mention must be made of Ryan VanderVelden mugging and careening through his various characters.

Wed
01
Nov

And then I wrote...

by Dick Schilling, "Editor Emeritus"

... that a national columnist this morning noted that if President Trump does nothing else (and he hasn’t been able to do much!) he may have had some success in reestablishing the separate roles of the three branches of government. He has in some instances undone the executive orders of his predecessor and referred a matter to the legislative branch, where it should reside according to the constitution. And he named an apparent strict constructionist to the Supreme Court.

Wed
01
Nov

Letter to the Editor: We are missing out

To the Editor:

November 7, Waukon residents will have the opportunity to vote on our local Hotel/Motel Tax. You might ask, “what is this?” The Hotel/Motel tax is a tax imposed on the gross receipts from the renting of sleeping rooms, apartments or sleeping quarters in any hotel, motel, inn, public lodging house, rooming house, tourist court, bed and breakfast or any place where sleeping accommodations are furnished to transient guests when staying for 31 consecutive days or less.

A City is the entity that can impose, by ordinance of the city council, a Hotel/Motel tax at a rate not to exceed 7%. This tax, when imposed by a City, shall apply only within the corporate boundaries of the city. Currently, the rate is 4% tax for these sleeping accommodations in our city, which, according to State of Iowa figures, is low. Out of 156 Iowa cities that have a Hotel/Motel tax, 135 have gone to that 7% level.

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