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Published: Tuesday, 11/18/2003

Businesses aid schools in Sylvania

Candidates for Sylvania Township trustee raised the issue of commercial development along Central Avenue and in the township. I served eight years (1982-1990) as a member of the Sylvania Board of Education. Expanding the commercial tax base in the school district to relieve some of the burden on the residential taxpayer was one of our goals. The taxes paid by commercial real estate provide significant support for Sylvania Schools without increasing enrollment.

A good example are the taxes paid by the Meijer store on Central Avenue in Sylvania Township. Meijer pays a net general tax, which does not include special assessments, of $129,945.97 a half, or $259,891.94 on an annual basis. The lion s share of this real estate tax, $145,331.78, goes to support the Sylvania school district. This is money the homeowner doesn t have to pay! (This information is public record at the Lucas County Auditor s Office.)

Schools in Ohio are facing financial difficulties. If commercial development had not taken place and generated the revenue it has, Sylvania might be hard pressed to pay for the quality education provided by the school system.

GEORGE SENEY

Sylvania

After seeing a picture of the rusted reactor at Davis-Besse, I can only conclude that it s time for a special prosecutor to be called in to investigate willful negligence and reckless endangerment by FirstEnergy and the NRC of the millions of people in this region.

How soon will it be before West Sister island becomes Three Mile island? The taxpayers wouldn t have to foot the bill. I m sure FirstEnergy would be happy to pay for the investigation with the profits from years and years of the highest electric rates in the nation.

Let s put an end to this plant before it puts an end to us.

DENNIS GWYNNE

Waterville

George Mulley, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission inspector general s senior-level assistant for investigative operations, said that the NRC oversight problem at Davis-Besse “was sloppy but not willful.” His comment begs rebuttal.

If at least one of the resident inspectors was reported to have seen heavy streaks of rust along the reactor head and did not know what to make of them, as is reported in the Oct. 22 Blade article, then why did that inspector fail to pursue the matter further up the chain of command?

A reactor is a pressure vessel, for comparison purposes, somewhat like a boiler. It would seem simple common sense would require a person to look further into the appearance of scaling, flaking rust on any pressure vessel. A rupture on a hot water or steam boiler is dangerous enough. The thought of a rupture on a nuclear reactor is something one would rather not consider.

It seems to me an NRC inspector in a nuclear power plant should hold himself apart from the utility employees. It is one thing to be diplomatic and work with them as they deal with day-to-day issues, but the standard should be set that the inspector is still on a different team from those working for the utility.

Once again, it would seem that simple common sense would require such a relationship. That one of those inspectors employed by the NRC at Davis-Besse was hired by the utility suggests a rather cozy relationship.

Taking all of this into consideration, I have to wonder if Mr. Mulley really believes his own statement? Because if he does, it seems the problems with NRC oversight may be much more extensive than a problem with two previous inspectors at Davis-Besse.

JUDITH JACKSON

Petersburg, Mich.

Jack Kelly wrote in his Oct. 25 column that “those who deliberately murder women and children are evil, and it is important to call them by their right name.” Apologists for Tiger Force apparently disagree with this retired military officer and conservative columnist.

How ironic that the same conservatives who tell us “government is the problem, not the solution” think that citizens of other nations should welcome with open arms soldiers carrying deadly weapons who declare “I was sent by the government of the United States - and I am here to help you.”

DONALD J. STIERMAN

Meadowwood Drive

“From the Far East to northwest Ohio” in the Nov. 2 Blade was a great article!

Am I the only one who wonders why only six of the 31 listed businesses are in Lucas County? These businesses employ 7,363 people, of whom only 5.3 percent (388) work in Lucas County. Why didn t more of the 31 locate in Lucas County? What s missing in Lucas County that the counties south of us seem to have? Doesn t the leadership in Lucas County know what s missing and what it will take to create it?

Wouldn t it be great if the area s economic development leadership knew what was needed, won community support for the changes required, began building what s needed, and received Blade editorial and news support for their efforts? It s not an unreasonable request, if we re concerned about the future of our children and grandchildren.

JOE ANDREWS

Front Street

We re happy to hear that Perrysburg High School is considering humane alternatives to dissection following an incident in which a teacher paraded around at a pep rally with a dead cat that was to be used in a dissection project.

As this case vividly illustrates, teaching students that it s acceptable to kill and cut up animals for classroom projects is a profound lesson in disrespect for life

Millions of animals - everything from frogs to dogs - are killed every year to be used in biology and anatomy classes. Some of them could be lost or stolen companion animals. When PETA went undercover at one of the nation s largest suppliers of animals for dissection, our investigator was told by his supervisor that some of the cats killed there were companion animals who had “escaped” from their homes.

Sadly, some teachers cling to the outdated notion that there s just no substitute for dissection. But in every study conducted on the subject, students who used alternatives to dissection learned and retained as much - or more - information about biology and anatomy as their dissecting counterparts.

Biology class doesn t have to be a funeral. Today, there are hundreds of computer programs, laser discs, and models that offer educators and students alike a humane alternative to “the real thing.”

PAULA MOORE

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals

Norfolk, Va.

It seems that the primary subject that the ACLU is addressing lately is the presence of religion in our daily lives, like it s necessary that we don t get too much. Its acronym ought to stand for “Against Christianity Lingering Unchallenged.”

I find it increasingly more difficult to recognize when it truly performs a service for our society. Certainly, it s easy to search our governmental environment and find instances where issues can be raised.

It appears that the ACLU does this just because it can make a point and initiate change even though there really isn t a strong need for one. Maybe it needs to spend a little more time performing pro bono work for the unfortunate victims of true injustices who would actually appreciate it.

I find this organization to be against the civil liberties of the majority.

L.R. GILLEN

Maumee

A clue to TPS woes

A teacher fired for being too demanding of his students; Toledo Public Schools in a state of academic emergency.

Hmm, could there be a parallel here?

PAUL WROE

309th Street



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