Toledo Mayor D. Michael Collins was correct that there is a confidence void over the handling of the recent water crisis (“Collins: Water crisis leaves confidence void; Testing method for toxin still under debate,” Aug. 24).
Typical of politicians who look for a scapegoat, he and his minions pointed fingers at the state and federal governments, the outdated city water plant, and farmers.
In the midst of the chaos, our liberal, labor-backed state and federal officials had photo opportunities and came out of the woodwork with pronouncements and opinions that didn’t hold water.
The water plant has been neglected for far too many years. Without proper maintenance, any machine or structure deteriorates. But maintenance is not a highly visible budget item — unlike repairing roads, opening pools, and refurbishing parks.
Because of that political neglect, we have a problem. When former Mayor Mike Bell brought up the water plant maintenance issue, Mr. Collins, then a City Council member, voted against action.
We need elected officials who work for the city rather than for the next election, and who have a transparent method of governing.
Lawn chemicals not the problem
After weeks of reports about the algae in Lake Erie, how could the writer of the Aug. 26 Readers’ Forum letter “Farmers innocent; don’t treat lawns” have missed all the studies that cite agricultural runoff as the major contributor to the nutrient loading into the lake?
Nutrient input from lawn fertilizer has not been a major contributor. And now that most lawn fertilizers do not have any phosphorus in them, the nutrient input is even less.
It is well past time for denials and the blame game. It is time for all of us to look at what we can do to reduce nutrient input. We are all part of the problem and we must all do our part to reduce these inputs.
The facts are there, the sources are known. This is a fixable problem.
Editor’s note: The writer is president of the board of trustees of Lake Erie Waterkeeper Inc.
Water system should go private
If the people of northwest Ohio want reliably safe drinking water, they will insist that the City of Toledo and other regional governments sell their water and sewer infrastructure to a for-profit water company, operated by people with professional water chemistry expertise.