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Published: Monday, 6/29/2009

Efficiency greater in new homes

The Ohio Association of Homebuilders doesn t want consumers to buy an energy-efficient home. The organization has convinced several legislators to further weaken Ohio s energy code by adopting an amendment to the proposed state budget that would effectively put the association in charge of approving the energy code. A weak energy code is no different from a tax, a tax you will pay as long as you live in your home, in the form of higher utility bills.

Our organization, Ohio Partners for Affordable Energy, includes more than 60 nonprofits, most of which weatherize the homes of low-income customers. Weatherizing more than 10,000 homes a year has given our crews more experience in energy-efficient construction than most builders.

A more efficiently built home will cost a little more up front, but an additional $1,500 in a 30-year mortgage won t make a home unaffordable. Paying higher gas and electric bills than necessary will cost the average family a lot more.

Any energy auditor can tell you that the cheapest way to make a home efficient is to do it right the first time. Sure, we can weatherize a home later, but a consumer shouldn t have to weatherize a new home.

Urge your legislator to protect consumers by taking the homebuilders language out of the budget.

Dave Rinebolt

Executive Director Ohio Partners for Affordable Energy Findlay

Health care in this country is in need of a severe overhaul in order to finally save the uninsured. Some are saying that President Obama s plan would cost too much, would encourage companies to drop their paid insurance programs, and that the country will be bankrupt in 10 years.

Maybe I m biased because I am one of the many Americans who would benefit greatly from universal health care, but I fail to see how any of the possible negatives prevail over the positives in this instance.

The way that I see it, changing the health-care system is going to be a very expensive undertaking, but the benefits far outweigh the risks because it already costs too much and not enough people are covered.

Plenty of firms drop their insurance programs because of the high cost. And because the high costs of insurance and health care are responsible for so many Americans going bankrupt, going broke while covered by a government-sponsored health care would be welcome as opposed to being broke and uninsured.

Many Americans are not listening to the criticisms of the President s planned changes because the most vocal critics are those among the fortunate few who do not to have to worry about their own health-care costs.

Karlton Brown

Matson Street

I just read that Congress has passed a bill to allow people with gas guzzlers incentives of up to $4,500 toward a more economical car.

The same article states that these incentives apply to foreign cars. If this legislation is aimed at stimulating our economy, then why are we again subsidizing foreign cars?

People try to tell us that Toyotas and Hondas are built in America. The vehicles are assembled here from parts shipped from Japan and 75 cents of every dollar spent on these cars goes to Japan.

We all need to wake up and support our own. Buy American.

Ron McAtee

Curtice

In regard to the proposed trash-container fee: How absurd. This is the last straw.

This City Council is sitting on its brains. Start a recall on any one of them who votes for such a back-handed deal. I say hire an outside contractor for trash pickup to save the city some money.

Don t dump this one on taxpayers too. Get it?

Diane Welch

Ganymede Drive

A recent Blade column confirms the trend toward an increasing number of empty homes in Toledo. If this keeps up, we ll have a new way to spell the name

of our hometown: D-E-T-R-O-I-T.

DENNIS P. BECK

Eastwick Drive



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