There has been a lot of media coverage and community reaction to the closing of The Andersons retail stores. Unfortunately, the fact of the matter is that the retail stores were no longer a profitable division for the company.
The Andersons had to make the prudent financial decision to close its retail stores. While many of us were saddened and disappointed by this decision, we need to remember that this was a business decision, not a personal decision.
The Andersons has been part of the northwest Ohio business community since the 1940s.
It has supported (and, I believe, will continue to support) our schools, our churches, our charities, our lives for many years, because that’s what local companies do.
Local companies donate money and merchandise to local schools, churches, and nonprofit organizations. Local companies invest in the local economy.
Local companies employ local people — our friends, neighbors, and family members. This is why it feels personal to us when a local company decides to close its doors. But we are all responsible for those doors closing.
We go to the big-box stores for tools and plants and light bulbs, when we could go to the local hardware store, nursery, or lighting store. We eat at national chain restaurants, when we could dine at a locally owned establishment. We buy our produce, bread, and meats at the supermarket, instead of the local farmers market, bakery, or meat market. Most of us don’t think about it, but our everyday decisions affect the local economy! If we want our community to grow and thrive, then we need to make a more conscious effort to support our local businesses.
In summary, if we’re wondering why we should support local businesses, the answer is pretty simple: We should support local businesses because local businesses support us!
Director of Marketing
N. Reynolds Road
Investigation must be thorough
There are misconceptions about the legalities of what President Trump did or did not do with respect to Russia’s influence in the 2016 election.
It is useful to recall that former President Richard Nixon was not impeached for “Watergate” (what he did or did not do during the election of 1972).
The House Judiciary Committee approved three articles of impeachment for Mr. Nixon (he resigned without a full vote in the House). Those articles of impeachment were: obstruction of justice, abuse of power (involving or trying to involve the FBI, Department of Justice, CIA, and Internal Revenue Service in illegal activities), and defiance of subpoenas.
Two other proposed articles of impeachment failed, one about the war in southeast Asia, and the other about income tax fraud. We simply do not know at this time whether or not Mr. Trump was responsible for Russian interference in our election, but his recent actions raise many concerns about the appearance of obstruction of justice and abuse of power.
If even the realistic possibility of impeachment exists, there must be a thorough investigation by special prosecutor Robert Mueller. The American people deserve the truth.
Solutions to Toledo’s sidewalk troubles
In regard to The Blade’s May 25 editorial “Sidewalks need long-term fix,” may I offer a way to help pay for it? Since 1912, Toledo has required that owners/occupants of property that abut public sidewalks clear them of snow and ice. (521.01 T.M.C.)
Another ordinance prohibits snow and ice that has been removed from driveways and parking spaces from being deposited upon any paved part of the public right-of-way, which includes public sidewalks. (743.17 T.M.C. )
I am not suggesting that the city go after Ma and Pa Kettle, but there are several hundred locations within Toledo where businesses spend several hundred to thousands of dollars, each time it snows, to have their driveways and parking lots plowed, which is not required by law to be done, but have for decades failed to comply with the two above-cited ordinances.
Under Toledo Municipal Code, as well as Ohio Revised Code, if the offender is an organization, under 501.11 T.M.C., the penalties are fines of up to $1,000 and $2,000. As to snowplow contractors, they too may be cited for dumping snow onto public walks, or streets, and leaving it there, as provided for, by law.
If the city were to use such fines for violations of the above code violations, the city could raise thousands of dollars to be used for fixing public sidewalks throughout the city, and in the winter, compliance with the snow laws could be achieved.
Problems with Trump’s budget plan
The Blade’s May 24 article “Trump unveils $4.1 trillion budget plan” outlined the devastating cuts to essential social and environmental programs. It briefly noted that the plan “boosts spending for the military by tens of billions ... .”
According to the National Priorities Project, the Pentagon already consumes nearly $600 billion in taxpayer dollars each year — a sum equal to the military outlays of Japan, France, India, the United Kingdom, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and China combined. Yet Mr. Trump is asking for $54 million more for 2018, an amount that would send 1.6 million students to college for four years, provide health insurance to 12 million people, or fund the Environmental Protection Agency for six years. The cost of the programs slated for elimination amount to just one-half of 1 percent of the current Pentagon budget.
The irony is that Mr. Trump’s budget also slashes funding for the State Department and USAID, whose foreign assistance and diplomatic programs help prevent violent conflict and genocide abroad. More than 120 retired generals wrote to Congress in February asking that these programs not be defunded. The military sees them as crucial to advancing overseas and homeland security.
We have a militarized foreign policy that cripples our economy at home while swelling the numbers of civilian casualities, refugees, and jihadists abroad. We must demand a budget that promotes peace and addresses basic human needs.
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