Letters to the editor Sept. 26

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Valley growth

Bravo to the Daily Inter Lake article (Sept. 12) regarding the status of a Columbia Falls subdivision proposed for the area near Flathead River and River Road. The journalist covered the comments of Luci Yeats (and others) at the public meeting whose family has owned farmland adjacent to the proposed subdivision for more than 100 years. For all the folks in shock and horror at the unprecedented growth in the valley and more particularly Whitefish, her comments echo and ring true for all of us.

“If you like the changes happening currently in downtown Columbia Falls (how about Whitefish - my comment), then I’m sure you’ll have no problem voting for this PUD and major subdivision,” Yeats said. “But I don’t necessarily want my community to look like every other urban community in the United States. I don’t want people to move here for the natural beauty the area possesses, and make it look like the place they were trying to get away from. I don’t want a place that supports a second or third home for someone. I don’t believe we owe anyone a place to live by destroying our rural areas, our wetlands and our wildlife habitat.”

The crowd gave her a big round of applause, as do I. Please think Whitefish planning and zoning, council members, mayor, of what you take away from the public good — views, trees, clean water, animal habitat, affordable housing — every time you approve another paved, treeless, dense housing subdivision that most likely becomes absentee housing except for VRBOs.

— Marguerite Kaminski, Whitefish

Mail in your ballots

Many constituents didn’t know what to think about the all-mail ballot for the SD6 bond issue in Columbia Falls. It is the first mail-in ballot in our school district though several districts across the state have done it for years.

I think the trustees made a great decision! Now every voter will have the ballot in hand and not use the excuse that they “didn’t know” especially when it’s being sent at an odd time of year away from other election cycles.

Montana law 20-9-428 states that a bond election will pass with a simple majority if at least 40% have cast a ballot. If more than 30% but less than 40% cast a ballot the approval rate must be 60% of the ballots. If less than 30% cast a ballot the bond is rejected.

The Flathead County Election Office will verify our signatures from the voter cards on file and return them to the district with a count. Election judges will then start the cumbersome task of counting our votes.

State law doesn’t allow ballot harvesting so be very aware of having proper paperwork if you are delivering someone else’s ballot.

You need to vote your ballot and be sure it’s to the district office by Oct. 5. The ballots were mailed last week and some of us are still waiting for their arrival.

We all know that snail mail is just that — slow! Be sure your ballot is returned early enough to count.

See you at the mailbox.

—Sen. Dee Brown, R-Coram

Bears in town

I have been of the opinion for several years that grizzly bears are getting way too populated in Montana and also our area around Kalispell. We had one on Two Mile Drive seven or eight years ago. Recently a griz on Conrad Drive, and the Many Lakes area.

It is only a matter of time when we have a fatality — then many authorities will do something about them.

I called Fish, Wildlife and Parks about the bear on Two Mile and was told there has been a grizzly for eight years at McWenneger Slough and hadn’t caused any problems. Wow!

— Jeanne Linrude, Kalispell

Time for change in Helena

If you’ve been paying attention to the news, it’s clear that the 2020 election cycle is upon us. This includes our own governor’s race. For the last 16 years, we have sent a Democrat to Helena to be our state’s chief executive, and the results have been clear. A less than stellar economy which causes many to leave the state, an alarming increase in violent crime, and drug use that is destroying our communities. Montana cannot afford another term of Democratic leadership in Helena.

With that in mind, it makes the decision for who our Republican nominee should be that much easier. There is too much at stake in this election for us not to put our strongest candidate forward, and that is Congressman Greg Gianforte. He has proven that not only is he a principled conservative, but his business experience will make him a phenomenal governor, and that is something we have been lacking in Helena for far too long.

He has worked with President Trump to cut taxes for all Americans, and it has had a tremendous impact on our national economy. Gianforte plans to apply these same principles at home in Montana. Understanding that it is impossible to tax your way to prosperity, he believes that Montanans have worked hard to earn their money, and that they should keep more of it.

As Montanans, we understand the importance of protecting our Second Amendment rights, and ensuring that we continue to have access to public lands. It is well known that Greg is an avid outdoorsman, and that these are important issues to him. And that is why I am proud to support the Congressman in becoming our next Governor. Because he will bring conservative business experience to Helena and protect Montana values.

—Rep. Wylie Galt, R-Martinsdale

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