Letters to the Editor

Housing, Climate, Gasoline, Drought, Exit exams, Graffiti

The mayor and City Council are encouraging more central city housing, like this project underway near Broadway in Sacramento.
The mayor and City Council are encouraging more central city housing, like this project underway near Broadway in Sacramento. apayne@sacbee.com

Plan squeezes middle class

Re “Big push starts for 10,000 new units” (Local, Aug. 27): The only people to be welcomed to the central city in the grand housing plan are people who can qualify for affordable housing or those who can afford the market rate rents.

Due to their taxpayer-funded subsidies, affordable projects target renters up to 60 percent of the area’s income ($30,000 for a single person; $43,000 for a four-person household). But the high rents at new market-rate projects range from 100 percent to 200 percent of area income.

The middle-income folks are simply locked out of this plan, unless they want to be excessively burdened with housing costs. A world class city should be able to address housing for people across the income spectrum.

Robert Rystad,

Citrus Heights

Stop ignoring scientific evidence

Re “Scientists see global warming, drought ties” (Page 8A, Aug. 21): Recent scientific research points to more evidence showing the role a warming climate plays in “intensifying and prolonging droughts.”

However, recently, I have heard many people make statements like: “It doesn’t matter if we overwater our lawns because the water goes back into the aquifer,” “Making a big deal over the drought is a ploy by Southern California to get more of our water” and “The coming El Niño will prove the panic over the drought is unfounded, and climate is just doing its normal fluctuations.”

These comments are not backed by science. People need to stop living in a bubble of information from questionable sources and start supporting programs that deal with the realities of climate change.

Linda Klein,

Rancho Murieta

Gasoline cut benefits all

Re “How could carbon cut impact us?” (Insight, Dan Walters, Aug. 25): Cutting gasoline consumption by 50 percent by 2030 is a win-win-win-win for California.

The air is cleaner, saving lives and billions in health care costs.

More fuel efficiency and electric vehicles save the consumer money. Our Chevy Volt with 75,000 miles on it has averaged more than 100 mpg and costs about 3 cents per mile to drive.

Converting to clean energy means more jobs for Californians in retrofitting buildings and in the solar, wind and electric-vehicle industries.

And, most importantly, cutting gas consumption puts us on the road to stopping global warming with its droughts, fires, heat waves, rising oceans and extreme weather.

Jack Lucero Fleck, Oakland

Lots of ignorance about ferrets

Re “Ferret legalization is a bad idea” (Letters, Aug. 21): Ron Loutzenhiser is misinformed about ferrets. So let me set the record straight.

There are no feral ferrets in California. Or in North America. They’re house pets. Kind of like poodles. They aren’t out there terrorizing the ecosystem.

Ferrets ferocious? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only the guinea pig is a safer pet when it comes to bite statistics. I guess they didn’t consider fish.

Ferrets overrunning an area without natural predators? Besides some feral ferret-polecat mixes in New Zealand and the Shetland Islands, there are no feral ferrets in the world.

If you are going to restrict a freedom, you should have a good reason.

Pat Wright, La Mesa

No benefit to high school exit exams

Re “Reprieve signed for exit exam” (Capitol & California, Aug. 24): I wonder if lawmakers discussing the future of the high school exit exam are aware of research on these exams. A review done by researchers at the University of Texas in 2010 concluded that high school exit exams do not lead to more college attendance, do not result in increased student learning and do not result in higher employment.

Stephen Krashen,

Los Angeles

Overly harsh graffiti sentence

Re “Tagger draws jail time for graffiti” (Page 3B, Aug. 23): Having somehow gained the impression that Sacramento was a city that cultivated the visual arts, I was startled to read that a tagger received a sentence of 290 days.

Jail time seems an overreach and harsh sentence for a nonviolent crime against property. The expense of incarceration will be much higher than the $2,200 to $2,700 damages Brian Quillin has caused.

Gary B. Palmer,

Nevada City

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