Letter – June 2021

Posted

The Editor:

It saddens me to see and hear people cutting down mature trees here. This is especially the case because our community values our natural setting so much.

There are many good reasons to cut down trees, particularly trees close to your house. They might compromise your septic location. They might pose a fire hazard by the proximity to your dwelling. They might be so old, damaged or diseased that they do not have much time left and need to be removed for safety’s sake. But to see a lot completely cleared without replacement of the 30 percent of trees mandated by Whatcom County code makes me and many others unhappy.

Trees don’t need to be replaced in the same spot or be the same species as those removed. Replacement trees can be planted in a place that is better for the homeowner. (Just don’t ever replant near your septic drain field!) An ornamental or fruit tree is a wonderful replacement choice. It will delight not only you but also the birds, pollinators and passersby.

Tania Clerac, dean of environmental sciences at Fleming College, points out that deciduous hardwoods, like maples, are actually better carbon-sequesters than common evergreens. Deciduous softwoods, like birches, are second best. Our native red cedars – while absolutely magnificent – are actually quite poor at removing carbon from the atmosphere.

So, if you want to replace a downed cedar or Douglas fir with a flowering dogwood or an apple tree, you have a thumbs-up from climate scientists and many environmentalists.

I guess my message is: Cut trees only if you must. But if you must, replace at least 30 percent of them with species that help protect our environment and enhance the enjoyment and health of all. Let’s not raze Paradise. Keep Point Roberts green!

Rhiannon Allen

Point Roberts

 

The Editor:

We have a small cottage in Point Roberts and it is with continued frustration and sadness that our two governments cannot come to a simple travel arrangement given the unique geography of the Point and the hardship of people. We have not been able to check on the cottage for over a year – we hope that there is no critters moving into our a jungle of a yard.

We have both had our Covid-19 shots on March 17. Is it not possible to get a 48-hour “pass” from U.S. Customs and Border Protection on the provision for maintenance checkup only? I would urge all interested people (on both sides of the border) do some serious lobbying.

Maureen Neff

Salt Spring Island, B.C.

 

The Editor:

What difference will five weeks make to open our border?

Actually, quite a bit, if the sun shines and the grass dries.

It will take only a match, or a cigarette and it will catch fire, without a witness, considering the ghost town the Point has become.

Is anyone really ready to take that chance, with most careful Canadians already vaccinated and only one case on the Point?

So, just a year of insane decisions to put most businesses out, have an exodus of the sparse population, have 80 percent of homes unattended by their Canadian owners, a whole disaster in itself for a thousand full time residents and the disciplined Canadians from a low count infection area.

Who will pay for the destruction from fires due to dry grass unattended because of nonessential travel our trips to look after the ground, while masses of people hopped on planes to Florida, and others drive their cars all the way to Alaska through B.C.?

Really, risk having court cases in case those homes go up in flames? Hard to justify that the U.S. let Canadians enter to go on holidays flying to a Florida hotel, but not one driving five minutes across the border to their own home, even on holidays, not only to maintain the place! How can such an explanation hold water? Who is in charge? Honestly!

Please push harder to a reopening now, this weekend, before the weather gets dryer. That is an essential trip.

Check the property ownership papers, and the vaccination card, and open up. This would not include shopping or parcel pick up, or gas fill up, or just a drive on a sunny day; that would cause traffic like it used to be pre-pandemic.

Only homeowners, full of common sense.

Is anyone listening?

Michael Cooper

Point Roberts

 

The Editor:

Washington state needs universal medical care. We must build a financial resource system to support care for all. Our insurance and tax structures are archaic and unfair. Right now the people at the middle and bottom of earners pay a much greater portion of their income on taxable necessities and medical insurance. (Medical insurance costs are everywhere, even built into auto insurance.)

Post-pandemic medical costs will soar as long term chronic cardiac, cognitive, renal and pulmonary conditions have affected patients and “long haulers.”

Many families now pay up to 20 percent or more of income for medical insurance and treatment. A state tax to cover universal care would mean savings and larger paychecks.

Industry spends millions each year as new insurance schedules alter offerings. Companies and institutions must re-evaluate their costs and invest in providing employees with alternative choices.

A Washington state universal system would cover everyone and eliminate the millions paid to sustain “choice plans.” (Consumers could purchase extra options.)

We could stop filling investor pockets, building huge office buildings, funding stockholders and huge CEO salaries. We could stop being dependent on total employer and employment funding. This would mean the freedom to choose your job and having protection while changing jobs: Savings and efficiency.

Donna Starr

Blaine

 

The Editor:

The Blaine High School Hall of Fame was formed four years ago under the auspices of the Blaine Booster Club, a 50.1 C3 support group of BHS athletics. Its purpose is to honor former BHS athletes, coaches and community members who have exemplified excellence and sacrifice in support of all areas of athletics.

In 2019, our first class of inductees was onored and introduced to our community at a home football game and the next day at a ceremony in the PAC. They consisted of:

• Football State Champions, 1978;

• Bob Robertson, Contributor,1947;

• Coaches Craig Foster and Rob Ridnour;

• Tim Evans, 1974;

• Richard “Handshake” Hanson, 1964;

• Chris Jorgensen, 1989;

• Ken “Bud” Markusen, 1962;

• Cherish Morrison, 2012;

• Luke Ridnour, 2000;

• Leslie Seelye, 1997;

• Jessica Summers, 2004;

• David Wiens, 1973.

Our new class of inductees were chosen but because of Covid-19, we were unable to have our ceremony last year and postponed it until 2021. Here are the names of the new inductees:

• 1990 State Champion Wrestling Team

• 1990 Baseball State Champions

• Contributor Dale Flint

• Distinguished Honorees: Ernie Jacobs, Bob Robbins

• Athletes Joe Pacioreki, baseball; Dwayne Magnusson, wrestling; Teresa Holleman Goninan, track; Becky Riddle, track and field; Joan Swanson, volleyball, basketball, softball and track; and Rodney Dohner, football, wrestling and baseball.

We are seeking financial assistance from the “community at large.” Whatever you may want or be able to donate for this tax-deductible cause will help defray the expenses involved in an awards ceremony such as this. Donations may be sent to: Blaine Booster Club, P.O. Box 152, Blaine, WA 98231.

The date for this year’s ceremony is scheduled for October 8-9. Mark your calendars now.

Gary Clausen

BHS Hall of Fame Committee chairman

Blaine

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