Traverse City Record-Eagle

Opinion

February 23, 2014

Letters to the Editor: 02/23/2014

Address basic needs

I was discouraged reading recent articles on the positions of our commissioners for Safe Harbor and incentives for affordable housing. In the first article the commissioners asked for more detail on the Safe Harbor request and asked would there be a better location. Both are valid questions but need to be answered quickly. The homeless numbered 31 in 2010 and now have more than doubled.

Additionally, a developer requested approval to bring more affordable housing to the city. One of the commissioners regretted their lack of action on this issue. Mayor Estes stated no planning has been done for affordable housing. Why have the commissioners waited so long to develop a strategy for affordable housing?

The lack of affordable housing and utilizing tax resources for commercial development only will have a negative impact on the homeless population. Tax incentives for commercial development brings jobs to the city, but these jobs are in the service industry and at the low end of the wage scale. The current policies need to change to include incentives and facilities to address those in the community who are struggling to earn enough for the most basic of needs - food and shelter.

Patricia Nugent

Traverse City

Thanks for clean walks

I wish to express my thanks to the city official who mandated the plowing of our sidewalks. It was particularly important during this atypical winter season.

Anyone who walks their dog knows that we would be walking in the streets if the city insisted that homeowners clean the public sidewalks. Some things are better done by the larger community. Clean sidewalks promote mobility and mobility is good for people and for businesses.

Now if we could figure out how to keep the street plows from sealing our walkways and driveways (as they plow), we would all be dancing in the streets.

John H. Vanderlind

Traverse City

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