On Tuesday, Toledo voters will make a decision about the quality of life in their city.
This decision involves passage of the 0.75 percent income-tax renewal levy that is crucial in maintaining current levels of operation and personnel in the city's police and fire departments.
Unfortunately, negative rhetoric by uninvited outsiders has not only created doubts and dissatisfaction about day-to-day life in Toledo, but has succeeded in distracting us from focusing on the city's many positive attributes.
Those inclined to vote against renewal of the levy, which has been in place since 1982, would be well to consider the disastrous effects that will follow if the levy fails to pass.
Less money for daily operation of the police and fire departments could trigger slower responses to our cries for help. It is likely the present wide range of unlimited garbage collection and other services, such as leaf collection and pothole repair, could also be narrowed and/or curtailed.
Toledoans need to put aside any frustration they have toward city officials and dismiss the dangerous opinions of outsiders. In the end, a vote against the levy is akin to cutting off your nose to spite your face. On the other hand, passage of the levy will ensure the comfort, safety, and security of every Toledo resident.
Let's show our pride in Toledo and continue to make it a good place to live by saying "yes" to the income-tax renewal levy on Tuesday.
Informed voters needed for 2008
There is supposed to be a positive for every negative, and perhaps the present situation in our country has finally aroused a disengaged electorate to get active. It is too bad it did not happen before the current administration took office.
We would not have had our resources siphoned off to finance a war that has killed thousands of innocent people, including our brave men and women, and destroyed families here and abroad.
Now, even maternity leaves for women in the Army are six weeks, and then it's only four months before they can be returned to combat zones.
Redeployments out of necessity have strained men and women physically and emotionally, obvious by the number of suicides and divorces recently reported.
We used to be known as the country that reached out to those in need, but now have a reputation for the destabilization of countries in the Middle East and denying basic services to those in this country.
Perhaps the latest blow was when our President, and even a Supreme Court justice, sanctioned the use of torture to gain information and denied Guantanamo prisoners rights we were supposed to be fighting for in other countries.
Let's hope voters will wake up this time and realize that many of the problems we are facing today here and abroad could have been avoided if they had been informed voters eight years ago and afterward made sure the ones they elected kept this country on track, using our resources to help our citizens as well as making all of the world a better and safer place.
Wood County parks need passage of levy
From the lookout at the Otsego Park shelter, we have watched eagles nesting on the Maumee River. We have visited many of the parks in the Wood County Park District and canoed the Maumee River in park-district canoes. We have enjoyed the educational programs and visited the Carter-Loomis farm to see how farm families lived in the Depression era. Our children have hiked park trails and discovered deer crossing their paths. Our grandchildren have Rollerbladed on the Slippery Elm Trail and taken water samples from the Maumee River to learn about the quality of the water.
How fortunate we are to have such a valuable resource in our county and what joy we experience as we visit these wonderful natural resources.
We urge support on Tuesday of the 1-mill levy that is the primary source of income for our Wood County Park District.
We will vote for the levy so that generations to come will have the opportunity to experience what our children and grandchildren have enjoyed.
Al and Joyce Kepke
Political corruption? We've seen it before
As a young lad growing up in Cincinnati in the 1940s, I looked forward to elections.
My father had been killed in World War II, after which my mother struggled to put food on the table. But during election time, that all changed.
I recall how she would study the newspapers, make a list of the pubs and taverns that were offering a politician-sponsored buffet, and off we would go for free food.
It mattered not that she had already pledged her vote to the politician at the previous buffet.
What mattered most was that her children were being fed. When my mother finally did cast her vote, it was always for the candidate who had the biggest and best buffet. You see, she was a very good Democrat.
It now appears that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are offering buffets of their own. Their respective buffets are in the form of campaign contributions to Democratic super delegates in exchange for their votes at the Democratic convention.
They want the super delegates to ignore the will of the people and vote for "what's good for the Democratic Party."
Some will say that this is all perfectly legal but if you ask me, it sure smells of corruption and kickbacks.
After 50 years, nothing has really changed, has it?
If Mrs. Clinton wins, who'll call the shots?
If Hillary Clinton wins the presidency, who would really be calling the shots? Former President Bill Clinton really liked being president when his term of office ran out.
If Hillary becomes president, would Bill be willing to turn over the reins to her?
Assuming he sleeps in the White House, could things get ugly?
AW school district needs to get it right
On Tuesday, the residents of the Anthony Wayne School District will need to determine whether they wish to increase their school operating taxes.
The administration says it will provide for the emergency requirements of the school district.
Any emergency created is only because the administration refused to put a replacement levy on the ballot.
They had the opportunity to put a replacement levy on the ballot, and an emergency levy if needed to operate the school district as a separate levy. Instead, they decided to put on a levy that would increase our taxes and give them little to operate on if it failed.
We are already aware of the estimating "inabilities" of the administration when they predicted a multimillion dollar shortfall at the end of 2008, only to now say there will be a surplus of more than $1 million at the end of 2008.
If the levy passes as it is currently proposed, we will be putting an extra $3 million into their hands that they don't need to operate the district for at least a couple of years.
How was the district able to work with the current $3 million revenue in 2008 and have a $1 million carryover while predicting the $3 million that would be generated by a replacement levy would not be enough to operate the district for the 2009 school ?.
The administration has options to put a levy, or levies, on one or more ballots between now and November, and still not affect the 2009 school year. Maybe next time they can get it right and come up with a reasonable levy structure that will allow us to support our school district without creating the huge surpluses that will occur if the current levy is passed.
Let's stick to the ABCs: "Anyone But Clinton."
Marion Township, Hancock County