Letters to the editor - 7-26-2013

July 26, 2013 

PARKING METERS

On July 23, the Boise City Council discussed with city residents the idea of increasing parking fees, bringing in new meters, increasing the hours the meters are on and adding Saturday to the days when parking is metered.

The council wisely pulled back its initial plan to study it in fuller detail. I applaud this action.

But I also have a few ideas for what should be examined and how.

First, a cost-benefit analysis would be useful for explaining to the public why the change was made. Second, the priority of the health of Downtown Boise should be of paramount importance.

Boise has recovered faster than many cities from the recession, but small businesses need as much help from friendly city policy as they can get.

Increasing parking fees could help or hurt them. Lastly, I have heard a lot about the idea of turnover. That is why new parking meters are being brought in to the city to seemingly punish people for reparking their vehicles.

I think this should be examined to see whether it encourages or hinders people from visiting Downtown. Hopefully some of these suggestions are heeded in the future.

GABE IACOBONI, Boise

ABSURD PLAN

Boise City Council, what are you thinking?

If you want to raise revenue by increasing parking fees, you’re free to do that.

Your latest idea, however, is absurd at best. By not only increasing the fees, but by increasing the hours and adding Saturdays, in addition to hitting the daytime shopping public, you are hitting the nightlife, dining and social public.

Your claimed driving force is not to increase revenue, but to push parking to the garages, to free up on-street parking.

These garages, which are designed to maximize the utilization of space, are fender-bender and door-ding-heaven, and very expensive at best. They are harder on the elderly, due to the excessive additional walking distances, to the point that many just won’t do it.

The proposed fees and hours will add 10 to 20 percent to the cost of going out to dinner Downtown. The proposed fees and hours are going to be very hard on many members of fraternal organizations that meet Downtown in the evenings.

Thank goodness for the restaurants that have invested away from Downtown, and the many shopping opportunities also away from the Downtown core.

Boise City Council, what are you really trying to do?

JIM V. VOYLES, Boise

CITY’S MESSAGE

Boi-se or Boi-cot?

The Boise mayor and council have made it abundantly clear: Stay out of our city, and if you insist on coming, don’t stay long.

OK, mayor and council, you put up the “Not Welcome” sign in the way of new parking meters and higher fees to park, so more of us will oblige you and not come to Boi-se. We will Boi-cot.

ROBERT FORREY, Nampa

LUCKOVICH CARTOON

Another vile display by Luckovich (who else?) in the July 22 cartoon depicting Liz Cheney as Linda Blair in “The Exorcist.”

Does this really qualify as political satire, or is it just plain filth? With such unremitting displays of hatred, maybe Luckovich should seek to dispel the demons that inhabit him instead. Or, he could show that he is bipartisan and draw our president’s head spinning around with the caption: “Which scandal should I address first?”

CHARLIE NATIONS, Eagle

OPPOSING OPINIONS

Thank you for publishing opinions that reflect more than one political party’s view.

Dana Milbank’s opinion on Obamacare was to me right on target. It seems that no matter what President Obama does re: healthcare, the Republican Party will disagree and call the president names.

President Obama can’t win with that group, which, to me, is just their way of avoiding the real issues of this country. My assessment of the Affordable Care Act is that when more can afford health insurance, there will be fewer trips to hospital ERs, which in the end cost you and me more out of our pockets.

Shouldn’t all Americans have health care available? Yes, there will always be some who abuse privileges, but does that mean we should penalize everyone?

Charles Krauthammer suggests that tax reform will help solve a multitude of problems. What a novel idea! Many Americans agree, but the politicians won’t listen because their only concern is re-election.

And while I’m ranting, let’s get rid of the paid lobbyists. Maybe then politicians will listen to their constituents and not their pocketbooks. They might also find time to focus on domestic and foreign policy issues.

MARILYN STAVE, Meridian

CHICKS N CHAPS

I want to express my deepest appreciation to the Idaho Statesman for the recent article on Chicks n Chaps, an organization co-founded by my niece, Shannone Hart, whose mother and my sister, Mary Kramer, died from breast cancer.

Our fervent hope is that no other sister, mother, wife, sibling or their families will ever experience this horrifying disease that kills more than 40,000 women each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Breast cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer death among women in the U.S., and until a cure is found, people like Shannone and organizations like Chicks n Chaps should be applauded and supported.

I cannot imagine how much worse it would have been for Mary had it not been for the kindness of family, friends and strangers in Missoula, Mont., where she lived.

Mary became the motivation for Chicks n Chaps, and we were happy she could attend an event before her death.

I hope many of my former colleagues, friends and neighbors in Idaho will attend one of the three Idaho Chicks n Chaps events. I can guarantee you that it will be time and money worth spending.

KATHRYN SOSBE, Camp Springs, Md.

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