Traverse City Record-Eagle

Opinion

June 19, 2013

Letters to the Editor: 06/19/2013

Better than ‘fair or good’

I read the June 11 front page story on nixing road repairs with complete amazement. Agreed, paying a 15 percent overhead for a bond issue hardly makes sense. Missing the boat on a guaranteed low-interest rate bond given recent interest hikes is extremely unfortunate. It’s a long way to 2015 and markets are increasingly volatile.

Our collective lack of planning has forced us into this unfortunate situation. In Chicago I was told there are only two seasons: winter and construction. The weather pattern up here is similarly predictable as are our great summer events and critical tourism industry.

So help me understand the “great strides” we are making (except perhaps to avoid the potholes) and why we didn’t deal with this issue incrementally much earlier. We are smarter than that.

Seems to be the perfect example of the old adage, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” or “Pay me now or pay me more later.”

I hope our planned 2014 “thin asphalt overlay” isn’t equally short-sighted. Traverse City deserves to be better than just “fair or good.”

Mike Peron

Traverse City

Where did lessons go?

I read with interest the YMCA’s intent to teach swimming lessons to the young people today. I commend that effort wholeheartedly and wish them luck in their fundraising and program establishment.

However, whatever happened to the lessons that were taught at all the Traverse City beaches in the summer? When I was growing up in the 1950s (I know, it was another century) we took Red Cross lessons — from beginner to senior life saving — right at Clinch, Elmwood or Bryant parks. We walked, biked, went on our own, no parents went along.

By the time I was in high school I had passed my senior life saving, by “saving” a 200-pound high school football player (Terry Banks) in the waves at Elmwood Park. I drank a lot of the bay that day. All the instructors were lifeguards at the beaches. Sure, the water was cold, but have you ever noticed how that doesn’t bother kids? No chlorine either!

Pardon my nostalgia, but it seems this program could happen, even while the Y’s program goes forward. Year-around swimming and lessons is an added plus, but the immediate and essential need can be addressed now.

Mary Hunsberger Link

Frankfort

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