July 23, 2014

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Opinion
Letter to the Editor
Written by Information submitted   
Saturday, August 10, 2013 12:34 AM

DEAR EDITOR:

While driving across Indiana-Ohio state line on Sunday, July 21, I noticed that not one of the giant wind turbines in sight was turning. The temperature was almost 90 degrees. Many air conditioners were working hard while no power was being generated by the monstrous wind generators. I drove to Van Wert on Thursday, July 25, and again, every wind turbine in sight was motionless.

It’s a good thing the power companies have other sources of energy - ones that are consistent, reliable, efficient and cost-effective.

I’ve read Iberdrola, the Spanish oil company involved with wind generators in this part of Ohio, has had lots of experience with wind generators in Spain. Spain has so invested heavily in wind generators that some believe the high price of energy is a major factor that caused many companies to leave Spain and locate where energy is less expensive. Some believe that losing all of those employers is the reason Spain is having financial problems. According to an article I read recently, the Spanish government either had to raise energy prices by 42 percent to consumers or change how they compensate Iberdrola and other energy companies. Fortunately for customers, the government chose not to raise their energy prices.

Do we want 42-percent energy price increases like that for ourselves?

My primary disagreement with wind generators is economics. If they are not costly and inefficient, why do they rely on federal subsidies to survive? Our government is collecting taxes and borrowing billions from China and others and then spending funds on expensive and unreliable “alternative energy” projects. These projects benefit companies like Iberdrola and a few landowners but the high cost is borne by all of us through higher taxes and higher energy prices.

Someday, our kids and grandkids will not only be saddled with very expensive energy prices, they’ll have to repay that borrowed money.

This is nonsense and should be stopped now.

Tom Odenweller

Delphos

 
The Obamacare train wreck is upon us
Written by U.S. Senator Rob Portman   
Saturday, August 10, 2013 12:32 AM
U.S. Senator Rob Portman

 

BY ROB PORTMAN

US SENATOR

 

Earlier this year, a senior Democrat in the U.S. Senate said he was concerned Obamacare was headed for “a huge train wreck.” Every day it seems that we are getting a better idea of just what that train wreck looks like—fewer full-time jobs, more difficulties for small businesses, higher insurance premiums, and fewer healthcare choices. Just yesterday, the Ohio Insurance Department announced that health insurance premiums in the individual market are expected to increase an average of 41 percent in our state next year. That’s money that could be going toward Ohioans’ retirement, groceries, and their children’s higher education; instead it’s going to cover President Obama’s costly mandates. And higher costs are only the beginning of Obamacare’s impact.

Recently, the Obama administration surprised everyone by announcing that it was delaying by a year a core pillar of Obamacare—a provision requiring employers with more than 50 “full-time” employees to offer “affordable health insurance” or face a fine. That requirement has had a number of negative—and entirely predictable—unintended consequences.

First, more and more small businesses are becoming “49ers” and “29ers.” Some employers have felt they have no choice but to freeze growth and hiring at 49 employees rather than coming under the onerous requirements of Obamacare when they cross the 50 employee threshold. Other employers have reduced the hours their employees can work from 40 to the less than 30 hours a week required by Obamacare to keep them from counting as full-time for the purposes of the legislation. It’s no surprise that the “underemployment” figure—those working part-time but wanting to work full time—has been on the rise, spiking by a dramatic 300,000 in June’s jobs report.

President Obama decided to postpone the employer mandate that causes these and other problems until the beginning of 2015. Some have said this was just an effort to avoid the political fall-out until after the 2014 midterm election. The decision may make good political sense for the President and his party, but for the millions of Americans who are either without a job or underemployed, it merely prolongs the economic pain. Employers know the mandate is coming, and it will continue to encourage them to downsize and reduce hours.

More Americans will either lose their jobs or find it harder to get one, and, as happened last month, more of the jobs that will be available are likely to be part-time jobs that make it harder if not impossible to make ends meet.

To make matters worse, the parts of Obamacare that were supposed to alleviate some of these problems are failing. Earlier this summer, Health and Human Services announced that key components of the Small Business Health Options Program—or SHOP Exchange—will also be delayed until 2015. These provisions were supposed to allow employers to provide workers with a set amount of money to purchase insurance in an online marketplace. HHS pointed to “operational challenges” in their decision to delay the program. They have given no indication of how they intend to meet these challenges and get the SHOP exchange up and running.

The individual insurance exchanges represent yet another coming challenge. These exchanges are supposed to come online in October. But not unlike the SHOP Exchange, there is no indication that the technology is in place to make that happen. To make matters worse, state-run exchanges that are in place—currently in sixteen states and the District of Columbia—are not able to verify employer insurance or income eligibility for substantial federal subsidies during the first year of operation. This means that there is no way to verify that someone who claims a government subsidy actually qualifies, opening the program to unintended risks of fraud and waste of taxpayer dollars.

President Obama sold his healthcare reform law by promising it would spur job growth, allow all of us to keep the healthcare we have, and reduce the costs of healthcare insurance. Unfortunately, every one of those promises has proven false. The legislation is instead becoming the train wreck many of us feared.

I believe our healthcare system as a whole needs reform, but it needs reform that works. It needs patient-centered reform that actually reduces the escalating cost of health care coverage and focuses on rewarding quality. The recent actions by the Administration only confirm the problems with Obamacare, and pushing the problems off for another year isn’t going to make it better. Obamacare should be repealed and replaced with bipartisan solutions that address the high cost and uneven quality of healthcare. That’s the way to avoid the train wreck and get our healthcare system on track.

 

 
A star is born in Maryland
Written by Nancy Spencer   
Sunday, July 28, 2013 12:00 AM

Friday was the usual during the week Jay is in Ocean City, Md. Work, work, work. Get everything done. Then watch Lotus dance on the live feed.

 
Letter to the Editor
Written by Information submitted   
Saturday, July 27, 2013 12:00 AM

DEAR EDITOR,

The Summer Reading Program 2013 has come to an end and I want to take this opportunity to share some highlights of our last eight weeks here at the Delphos Public Library. First of all, I invite all Facebook users to “like’” our library page where you can view loads of wonderful pictures of the children enjoying library adventures. We also welcomed Sarah Brotherwood to our children’s staff this spring. Sarah brought a lot of enthusiasm, computer expertise and creativity to the mix.

This year, we had 348 children and teens join: 216 kindergarten through fifth-graders, 101 preschoolers and 31 members of the Teenread book club. Of the 247 school-age members, 170 completed the program by reading at least 90 minutes a week for six weeks. Total attendance for all 34 events was 1,880.

As part of our programs, we reveled in the antics of David Kaplan, magician and comedian; at the Family Night, the children were able to climb on and experience several large vehicles, including tractors, a garbage truck, a fire truck and grain wagons; and they also got to dig in the mud and play with worms, compliments of our friends at Allen County Soil and Water Conservation. These are just a sample of the different activities that went along with the theme “Dig into Reading.”

Of course, none of this would be possible without the back-up of the whole library staff and a team of volunteers. Our 2013 volunteers were Sally Kiggins, Sue Wildermuth, Sharon and Sarah Closson, Teresa and Kayla Pohlman, Jessica Recker, Jennifer and Jason Ditto, Holly Dellinger, Makayla Herron, Adam Schneer, Emily Buettner, Claire Sensibaugh, Erin Pohlman, Madison Spring and Ryan Dickman. These folks gave a valuable service to the library this summer and we appreciate them very much.

As the Children’s Librarian, I want to compliment and thank the families for bringing the children to our summer activities as they are a joy to spend time with and serve. We’ve enjoyed their curiosity, enthusiasm and zest for life.

Sincerely,

Denise Cressman

Children’s Librarian

Delphos Public Library

 
Letter to the Editor
Written by Information submitted   
Saturday, July 27, 2013 12:00 AM

DEAR EDITOR:

I am responding the Michael Wrasman’s Letter to the Editor dated July 6 regarding wind turbines. Obviously, Mr. Wrasman has not done his homework regarding the problems wind turbines create not only for the people that have to live around them but also for the animals.

First, I would like to tell Mr. Wrasman Saint Francis of Assisi is the protector of animals and he would not approve of wind turbines. Most people love to see migrating birds, Canadian geese, Sandhill cranes and the local birds. The wind turbines have and will continue to kill these birds as they fly into the turbines, according to the National Wildlife Foundation.

Wind turbines are incompatible with farming. A farmer testified he will never be able to spray his field by air again because he can’t get insurance. Farming and living in a peaceful rural community are gone once turbines come. Also, there will be a loss of property value, ruined landscapes, noise, blade flicker, interference with the use and enjoyment of property and red flashing lights all night that can affect mental, physical and emotional health. Some people will be forced to move from their homes because of the bad effects turbines create. Some people are able to relocate; many are not because of money issues, it would cost too much. These are the things everyone should know about turbines.

Mr. Wrasman also states that wind turbines are a great resource to generate energy in remote locations, such as the remote countryside. The area where the company wants to put these turbines is not remote. Yes, have the wind turbines in remote areas where people don’t live so people don’t have to endure the bad effects that turbines create on people.

There are many beautiful homes in this area. Most people that live in the country don’t want to look out their window 24/7 and see these wind turbines flying around. They want to see the beautiful countryside, not a bunch of “whirly birds”, as you call them.

Wind turbines are not a win-win proposition for all involved. It is only a win for the large corporations that get individuals to lease their land to them. These people don’t have to live around turbines. Do your own research.

On March 29, the Wisconsin Ag Connection reported that Wisconsin Sen. Frank Lasee plans to introduce legislation that would give families that have been physically, emotionally or financially harmed by industrial wind turbines the legal right to sue for damages.

If I understand correctly, Sen. Lasee’s bill will enable anyone who is harmed by industrial wind turbines the ability to sue both the wind tower owner and the owner of the land on which the tower is located for loss of property value, cost of moving, cost of medical expenses, pain and suffering, attorney fees and any other loss as a result of the industrial wind turbine that is too close to their home or property.

Sen. Lasee states, “It is unconscionable for a family that has invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in their home that they have lived in for years to be forced to move because an industrial wind tower is built nearby or wish that they could move but just can’t afford it.”

It has been reported by Fox News the Cape Cod Community of Falmouth, Mass., is considering taking down their wind turbines at the community’s expense because of the adverse health effects on those people in the area.

In closing, I would like to say wind turbines for the corporations that provide them and the subsidies that they get from the government are all about big bucks for them. Forget about the people who may live in proximity to the wind farms. Forget about the birds and animals. Forget about how everything is linked together. Once this is “done,” it’s almost impossible to get it “undone.”

Mr. Wrasman, please don’t ruin other people’s lives because you and your wife like to see the “whirly birds,” as you call them (wind turbines), doing their thing.

Nancy Luebrecht

Delphos

 
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