Letters to the Editor, February 3-5, 2010
February 3, 2010
All of Park City still has memories of those amazing days at the 2002 Olympics when the USA dominated snowboarding in front of over thousands of fans at Park City Mountain Resort. Some of those same athletes are now Vancouver bound after wrapping up an amazing finale to the Sprint U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix.
Park City Mountain Resort continues to be an integral part of the snowboarding culture. That was evident in the two outstanding competitions where the best riders in America provided a showcase of progression of the sport today.
Thanks, Park City, for being such a great supporter of U.S. Snowboarding. We look forward to returning in the future.
President and CEO
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U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association
Towing charges were appropriate
Occasionally I run across people who think they are special and above all the rules. However, it is rare to see someone actually declare that in the local newspaper as Troy and Barb Coyle did in their letter, "Towing charges are outrageous." Their daughter’s car got towed from the Albertsons parking lot when she went off to ski. They blame it on Sundance. They blame it on Albertsons (now A Fresh Market). They blame it on the towing company.
What do they expect? That lot is littered with signs explaining that parking is for Albertsons customers only, and that violators will be towed. Somehow they seem to think that their rights to the parking lot are more important than the business that owns the lot or the customers that shop there. The excuse is, "Any other time it would be fine to park there and ski." No it isn’t! Park at the resort. Park in the remote lots. Ride a bus. Catch a ride with a friend. Pay for parking at the resort. Those are what the rest of us do.
When you park illegally within a few yards of a sign that says if you park there your car will be towed, I think a large bill or fine is appropriate. The lesson you are supposed to take from this is "don’t do it again," rather than complain in the newspaper about the expense.
Wolves will cause huge wildlife losses
The Canadian Gray Wolf has never been a "native" animal of the Rocky Mountain states in the lower 48 as stated by Mr. Leahy (Letters to the Editor, January 23-25). As a resident of both Idaho and Utah, I have personally seen the decimation of the elk and deer herds of central Idaho take place over the past years since the wolves were brought in from the Canadian populations. To see the facts and reports visit http://www.saveelk.com . (Be aware there are many graphic photos on the pages.) If you click on the "It Gets Worse" link you will then be led to several categories. (Under) "Domestic Animals Attacked," be sure to read (about) the 120 sheep killed. This was last summer one night in a private pasture just last August 2009 at Dillon Mont. This is a report from the Spokesman Review dated August 28, 2009. Then link over to "Human Attacks" and read about the confirmed wolf kill of a young Ontario, Canada, man, plus the other human attacks.
Senator Christensen is right. Do not let these non-native wolves become established in Utah. They will cause massive wildlife losses as well as heavy losses to the Utah ranchers. Plus they carry some very bad diseases they can spread to animals as well as humans. From 2003 to 2008 Idaho had the following confirmed wolf kills: 245 cows, 1,133 sheep, 47 dogs for the total of 1,425 animals killed. Our taxpayer dollars go to reimburse the ranchers for the confirmed livestock kills.
Another good source of information is the Pinedale, Wyo., paper http://www.pinedaleonline.com . Scroll down to the Wolf Watch by Cat Urbigkit link and click on the annual archives, Kat does a great job of posting all the Rocky Mountain area wolf news.
Park City/Coeur d’Alene, Idaho
Getting taken by two local businesses
I feel Mr. Coyle’s pain from his letter to the editor when it comes to Park City Towing. My daughter actually works at a restaurant very near the Cinemark Theater. If you have ever parked in that lot, there is no clear demarcation of where one lot ends that the other starts and finding a spot during Sundance is at best difficult. When she got off work she could not find her car and the Park City Towing folks just happened to be in the lot. They told her they had towed it and would be happy to take her to pick it up. They forced my 16 year old to go to the ATM and get cash. When I spoke to the driver and the person at Park City Towing, I got nothing more than "she parked in the wrong lot." All it would have taken was a phone call to the owner of the restaurant to validate that but they wanted their cash. Fun part was, they also charged her a fee to take her to pick it up, something they NEVER told her about before she got in the truck.
We also need to realize that lot is private property. When I inquired, Park City Towing has a contract with the Associated Foods Fresh Market there, so they shoulder equal responsibility in my eyes. I can say that this story will be told to all the folks I know and I will encourage them to NOT do business with both Park City Towing and Fresh Market.
War on wolves is based on ignorance
I am distressed to learn of Senator Allen Christensen’s war on wolves, and as someone who is concerned about the environment, and the welfare of wildlife, I will oppose any efforts to slaughter wolves. When it comes to the environment, what one state does affects the entire country.
Wolves, like other wildlife, were here before us, and are an integral part of the ecosystem. Human selfishness and ignorance nearly wiped out the wolves once before. Why would anyone want to be part of that shameful history?
Humans, including politicians, need to learn how to coexist with the wolves, instead of perpetuating cruel and untrue information about them. I urge Senator Christensen to educate himself, and others, about these beautiful creatures, and the importance in saving them.
In the long run, teaching people to accept and understand wolves will be much easier than trying to get back something once we have destroyed it.
Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.
Utah needs fair way to draw boundaries
Citizens arise! After the 2000 census, the boundaries of Congressional districts, State Senate districts, and House of Representative districts were "gerrymandered" unfairly in favor of the majority party in the Legislature. The result split some close-knit neighborhoods and ethnic groups, while combining others with very little shared interests.
To achieve a more equitable redistricting following the 2010 census, the Fair Boundaries Coalition wants the voters in the General Election next November to establish an independent commission to advise the Legislature regarding the location of voting district boundaries. For this purpose, Fair Boundaries Petitions are being circulated all around the state. Slightly more than 95,000 signatures of registered voters must be obtained by mid-April to place this issue on the November ballot.
The Utah Citizens’ Counsel, consisting of 15 concerned senior citizens (Robert Archuleta, Genevieve Atwood, Aileen Clyde, Gale Dick, Irene Fisher, David Irvine, Boyer Jarvis, Chase Peterson, Grethe Peterson, Bonner Ritchie, Dee Rowland, Karl Snow, Emma Lou Thayne, Raymond Uno, and Olene Walker), strongly urge all registered voters to sign the Fair Boundaries Petition.
Twenty-one other states already have some form of independent redistricting commission. Utahns will benefit from having such a group guide our legislature when it draws new district boundaries after the 2010 census.
Former State Senator
Wolf-control bill is a sad commentary
Our legislature is considering a bill requiring the destruction of any wolf entering the part of Utah where wolves are unprotected by the Endangered Species Act, and calling on the feds to capture any wolf that enters the other 90% of Utah where wolves are federally protected.
This bill is based on myths that to our north wolves are "wiping out" livestock and elk, even though a tiny percentage of livestock lost annually in the northern Rockies are due to wolves, and even though the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation reports that elk populations in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming have increased by 88% since 1975. This bill will nullify Utah’s Wolf Management Plan, even though the plan took two years to write through a public process involving diverse stakeholders, and was adopted by the legislature. This bill assumes that Utahns don’t want wolves in Utah, even though a USU survey reports that most Utahns, by about a 2:1 ratio, have a positive attitude toward wolves and think they should be allowed to recolonize suitable parts of Utah, perhaps with certain control measures.
This bill, if passed, is going to be a very sad commentary on how Utah treats our state’s natural heritage.