Your Sept. 27 editorial "Let the EPA do its job" portrays the Environmental Protection Agency as a benevolent force whose edicts are always sane, and opponents as Chicken Littles who liken increased costs to a falling sky. Environmental cleanup has come a long way since the 1970s, and current EPA efforts to save the planet are a clear case of the pendulum having swung too far the other way.
An example is a proposal to regulate how much dust is in the air in rural areas. In the cross hairs of the EPA scope are dirt roads and farm machinery. I don't know whether this is silly or scary. Either way, this EPA "remedy" would burden local communities with unnecessary and outrageous costs.
In Defiance, the EPA's unfunded mandate for sewer improvements is resulting in steep water-rate increases. This will have a negative effect on the local economy, making it harder to attract business. Some taxpayers say water-rate increases may influence whether they can afford to support a school levy.
As for the new EPA-mandated reservoir, it has created more water-quality issues than it was supposed to solve. That's how EPA meddling has improved the quality of life in my home town.
It cannot be assumed that the motives of the EPA are immune from the influence of politics. It's the perfect vehicle for government to impose more control over industries and individuals in the guise of protecting us from so-called global warming. I am more interested in knowing who will protect us from the tyranny of the EPA.
No dog park, no commissioners
Lucas County requires dog owners to buy licenses that cost $25, the highest rate in Ohio.
With an $800,000 surplus, Dog Warden Julie Lyle and County Commissioners Pete Gerken and Tina Skeldon Wozniak say the dog warden's office is not in the financial distress we were led to believe for several years ("Dog warden's surplus disputed," Sept. 30).
Why hasn't the prosecutor or the state attorney general's office investigated this? Dog owners were told that because of the hike in the license fee, a dog park at the Lucas County Recreation Center would be opened. It is not open.
It's time for the county to have a special election and remove Mr. Gerken and Ms. Wozniak.
Was the surplus our business?
Why should the Lucas County auditor have notified the media about the dog pound surplus ("Who does county auditor work for?" Readers' Forum, Sept. 25)? Why is it the media's or the public's business?
For the subject even to be brought up makes me wonder what people do all day.
Kathleen M. Stamm
Cull area's deer growth
The excess money in the Lucas County Dog Warden's office should be spent to cull deer herds that are wandering outside the Metroparks for food. Or close the Metroparks of the Toledo Area for a day and let hunters bag deer.
Sooner or later, the city and county will have to deal with the problem of too many deer. There are no natural predators to reduce their numbers.
Some moms keep dads from visiting
Your Sept. 17 editorial "Dads are important" presents only one side of the story. Not all absent fathers want to be absent. There are vindictive, angry, and bitter mothers who prevent fathers from seeing their children.
Examine why some fathers are not in their children's lives. It is not always because they do not want to be.
Fine in horse case is too little
The equine community is relieved that justice for the starving horses in the Robin Vess cruelty case has finally been served ("Horse owner to serve 42 days for cruelty," Sept. 25). But we're dismayed about the $8,711 fine, because it doesn't begin to cover the cost of care or rehabilitation of the horses.
It's not just a matter of providing feed for the animals. Farriers to care for their hooves, equine veterinarians and dentists, blankets, bedding, and transportation are costly. It would have been appropriate for Vess to be held financially accountable for those needs.
At least it's fitting that the judge decreed that Vess cannot own horses again. The equine community will ensure that order is enforced.
Will Tea Partiers improve things?
What are the Tea Partiers angry about? Bailouts? The bank bailout was started by the Republicans and President Obama continued it.
The auto industry bailout saved the U.S. car companies. Would massive bank failures and the collapse of the auto industry have saved jobs and helped the economy?
Did banks lend money as they should have? To force them to do the right thing would have required exactly the government control of business that the shouters oppose.
Is their anger about the requirement to buy health insurance? Motorists are required to buy accident insurance. Going to the emergency room with no insurance is the equivalent of having a car accident with no insurance. Those who have insurance ultimately pay the cost.
Or are Tea Partiers angry about the economy? The economy was in the tank long before Mr. Obama took office.
What Tea Party proposal will speed recovery?
Stop infections at hospitals
My wife just had her hip replaced at a hospital in Toledo.
Though she received excellent care from the surgeon and the hospital staff, she developed an infection a few days later.
Statistics from a Web site for medical professionals say infections affect 2 million patients and kill 90,000 patients a year, and that they cost $4 billion to $5 billion a year.
Those costs could be eliminated if some precautions were taken.
A hospital in New Jersey has eliminated infections by following these guidelines. Why haven't all hospitals gotten this message?
My wife spent four more days in the hospital because of her infection. Who will pay the bill? All of us.
Keep Marsh on elections board
Ben Marsh should serve out his full term on the Lucas County Board of Elections ("Elections board member asked to quit," Sept. 4). He has done an excellent job and Lucas County voters are fortunate to have a person of his stature overseeing the county's electoral process.
Mr. Marsh has decades of experience studying election law. He has spent 13 years on the Ohio Elections Commission and the Lucas County Board of Elections. For 29 years, he was the City of Maumee's chief legal counsel.
In 1997, the U.S. State Department sent Mr. Marsh to Bosnia-Herzegovina as an elections supervisor and adjudicator. In 1976, he was appointed by President Gerald Ford as special ambassador to Botswana.
His loyalty to the Republican Party is unquestioned. He is the former chairmen of the Lucas County Republican Party and the Young Republican Club.
Most important, Mr. Marsh takes a balanced, fair-minded approach to serving on the elections board. He should continue to serve Lucas County.
Village of Waterville