Letters

‘Let it Be’ on CBD zoning

Like the Beatles song “Let it Be,” “When I find myself in times of trouble … let it be.” CBD, CBD, CBD, CBD. “Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.”

Frank Griswold (with special thanks to John, Paul, George, and Ringo)

Respect designated parking

Designated parking often appears to be a convenient spot to park and at times it appears to not be in use. For an individual with a disability, with the required plates or tag, this is the safest route of access. You may not realize it, but if you illegally park, you will not only receive a $250 fine for parking in this spot, but you are violating the rights of someone else and breaking the law. I am sure that all of us are running behind schedule or just in a hurry. Please remember all of us are trying to get to the same place.

Below is the law.

AS 28.35.235. Unauthorized Use of Parking Reserved For Persons With Disabilities; Penalties.

(a) A person may not park a motor vehicle in a parking place reserved for a person with a disability unless

(1) the person operating the vehicle has a special permit issued by the department under AS 28.10.495 ;

(2) the person operating the vehicle has parked the vehicle for the purpose of transporting a person who has a special permit issued by the department under AS 28.10.495 and the person who has the special permit actually exits or enters the vehicle;

(3) the motor vehicle displays a special license plate issued to a person with a disability under AS 28.10.181 (d) and is operated by or used for the purpose of transporting a person with a disability; or

(4) the motor vehicle displays a special license plate or permit issued to persons with disabilities by another state, province,territory, or country and is being operated by or used for the purpose of transporting a person with a disability.

(b) A municipality may enact ordinances necessary to enforce this section.

(c) A person who violates this section is guilty of an infraction. Upon conviction, the court shall impose a fine of not less than $125, or, if the person has been previously convicted under this section, the court shall impose a fine of not less than$250. However, a person who violates this section and who was, at the time of the violation, operating a vehicle displaying a special license plate issued under AS 28.10.181(d) or a special permit issued under AS 28.10.495 (a) shall, upon conviction, pay a fine of $250 or, if the person has been previously convicted under this section, pay a fine of $500.

David Lewis

Independent Living Advocate

Congress should pass Reach Act

Pregnant women and young children are among the most vulnerable populations in developing nations. Every day, children around the world die from treatable illnesses, and eight hundred women die from pregnancy or childbirth complications. By investing in expectant mothers and young children, we pave the way for healthier, happier, and more independent future generations.

The USAID is currently responsible for allocating and dispersing funds intended for international aid. The Reach Every Mother and Child Act (S.1730) proposes the USAID target existing funding towards maternal and child health. Focus on maternal health makes sense, because, according to the National Institute for Health, “healthier women and their children contribute to more productive and better-educated societies.” In 2016, both Senators Dan Sullivan and Lisa Murkowski put forth their support for the Reach Act. Despite profound bipartisan support in Congress, it did not receive a vote in 2016, and was re-introduced in 2017.

The Reach Act’s goals transcend traditional party lines, and make not only moral, but medical and long term economic sense. I would like to thank Sen. Sullivan for his renewed commitment to maternal and child health in the 115th Congress. Additionally, I implore Sen. Murkowski to step up and renew her support for this bill.

Lauren Jerew

Council voted wrong on Spit cannabis sale ban

Monday, March 12, 2018, the city council of Homer, once again, voted against allowing legal commercial establishments to operate on the Homer spit.

The four who voted against it don’t want commercial cannabis in Homer, period. The only reason we have commercial cannabis coming to Homer is because of adamant opposition from the community when the council and former mayor tried to ban cannabis altogether.

These four think that it is a harmful drug and they are terrified of what it will do to our economy and are terrified of their children consuming it.

The only rational fear in that mix is the children consuming it. Children should not be consuming cannabis and they should have to wait until they are 21 years old to consume. Children should be worried about school and their future, not cannabis use.

To me the fears about a retail store destroying business on the Spit is downright irrational and borderline reefer madness.

The thought process is that if we eliminate cannabis and do not allow it on the spit, people won’t be consuming in public and we won’t have to deal with it.

What they are not considering in their thought process is that by not having a legal space to consume, people will continue to consume in their cars, walking down the beach, or worse, in hotels and public restrooms.

Not allowing a retail establishment with on site consumption gives people no alternatives and they will continue to do what they have always done.

Another thing they aren’t considering in their thought process is that people can purchase cannabis from dozens of stores from Anchorage all the way down through the Sterling and Kenai area.

So basically, when people land in Anchorage and head down to Homer to recreate, go fishing, or whatever, they are purchasing cannabis along the way and Homer doesn’t raise one red cent in tax revenues while the other municipalities are.

Where are they going to smoke it when they get here? Again, repeat, cars, walks on the beach, hotels, and public restrooms.

If the council truly cared about reducing public consumption, they would allow a well regulated and legal retail establishment set up a private consumption area out of the sight of the public.

Oh yeah, one last thing about the fears of federal interference. Feds don’t raid city councils. They raid the establishment and if the feds did decide to crack down on commercial cannabis, the operators will have to deal with the feds. It’s the choice they made when they got into the industry.

The city achieves absolutely nothing by banning commercial cannabis and retail establishments. You don’t have to like cannabis use, just like you may not like alcohol use. Voters want legal access to cannabis. Give it to them. You can vote to allow it begrudgingly and you can say all you want about how much you don’t like it, but don’t impede on others’ legal right to consume and purchase cannabis.

Good luck Homer. Pay attention to upcoming elections. We have a chance to fix the problem.

Jeremiah Emmerson

Hockey Association appreciates community raffle support

The Kevin Bell Arena and the Homer Hockey Association would like to thank those who participated in our annual raffle that was drawn on Feb. 14. The winners have been contacted and the cash prizes awarded. I didn’t win either, but I will try again next year and I hope that you will also!

The Homer Hockey Association operates the Kevin Bell Arena to provide on ice recreational opportunities for all on-ice activities. The proceeds from the raffle go to support the infrastructure used by all groups; from broomballers, curlers,figure skaters, hockey players, recreational skaters, and coming soon; speed skaters. While our teams travel all over, and bring many players to this town, they cover their own travel expenses.

It is a financial and logistical challenge for a non-profit organization to operate an ice rink. For over ten years now the Homer Hockey Association has operated the arena for the public good and with your continuing support, we will do so for the foreseeable future.

Thanks again and if you haven’t looked at the different recreational opportunities at the rink in a while, check out our website at www.kevinbellarena.org or stop by the rink.

Sincerely,

Jan Rumble, HHA President

‘Splash’ thanks Polar Bear Plunge donors, supporters

I would like to take the time to thank Dr. Susan Polis of Preventative Dental Services, and the American Legion Post 16 for their generous donations this year for the Polar Bear Plunge. I would also like to thank each and every single person that has donated to my cause; this was my 19th jump this year.

I raised $6632 for the American Cancer Society. To date, I have raised about a quarter million dollars, which is amazing for such a small community! I appreciate each and every person whether it’s good thoughts or monetary donations or gift cards as well. Each person in this town has been so amazing and helpful to me through the years. I want my 20th year to be exceedingly outstanding! My goal for this next year will be $20,000. Keep on the lookout for a possible raffle and or bakes ales to help reach my goal. I can start fundraising again this summer … again. Thank you to each and every one!!!

Sincerely,

Christie “Splash” Hill

Schroer Fund helps keep Mariner Booster Club going

The Homer High School Mariner Booster Club would like to recognize generous financial support from the The David and Elizabeth Schroer Fund, a donor advised fund at the Homer Foundation. The gift assisted in our purpose to provide support for all organized sports and activities at Homer High School including fall, winter, and spring sports, drama, debate, and forensics. Operating under the Kenai Peninsula Student Activities Association (KPSAA) and the Alaska Schools Activities Association (ASAA), the Booster Club is a nonprofit corporation that helps fund team expenses including uniforms and travel, advocates participation in co-curricular activities, and promotes student development.

Our students are well rounded as they must maintain standards of eligibility in academic progress, personal conduct, and enrollment. Mariner teams and individuals have been recognized at the local, regional, and state level for their achievements thanks to the time and investment from parents, coaches, and the generous support of our community!

Kathy Beachy, President

Homer High School Mariner Booster Club

Flex School appreciates healthy eating programs support

Homer Flex Staff and Students would like to thank the community and organizations who have made healthy eating apriority at our school this year. In the past year, many new programs have improved access for students to eat healthy meals both at home and at school.

First, thank you to the hard work and grant writing visionaries Cinda Martin and Susan Pacillo who have worked with the Food Pantry with funding from Wells Fargo and Homer Rotary to develop a backpack food program at Flex. This extremely successful program allows any student to bring healthy and easy to prepare food home. This program increases food security and decreases stigma for our students.

In addition, Flex has begun a community breakfast program. Through this program community volunteers sign up to serve a hot breakfast to Flex students every Wednesday. Access to warm home-made breakfast has made a huge difference for students and teachers alike. The graciousness of the breakfast club volunteers not only brings healthy food to the start of the school day, but shows students the amount of support that exists in our community.

Thank you to Karen Weston, Saundra Hudson, Connor Schmidt, Kyla Dammann, Shannon McBride, Sherry Stead, Jenna Kropf and the Young Adults Club, Leslie Slater, Shelly Laukitis, Claire Laukitis, and any others I have forgotten for getting up early and cooking pounds and pounds of bacon and pancakes. The Flex students are appreciative and grateful!

Ingrid Harrald, Counselor

Flex High School

Volunteers made Kachemak Nordic Ski Marathon a big success

It’s time for me to give thanks to all of the good folks who helped make the Kachemak Nordic Ski Marathon a huge success. This past Saturday morning more than 80 skiers from around South Central challenged themselves by racing in one of three events held at the McNeil Canyon ski trails and beyond. We had a 13k course, a 25k course, and a 42k course. Thanks to a big blizzard Friday, we had plenty of fresh snow on Saturday.

It takes a lot of effort to put on a big race like this. We had tons of help from McNeil, Eveline and Lookout groomers: thanks Derek, Stan, Nicky, Roy, Wes, Mike, Andrew, Bill, Dave, Kevin, Taro and John. Bill Hague kept our machines in top shape for marking and grooming the courses. Gloria and Russ, Nicky, Pat and Lewey helped with aide stations. Marianne, Jill, and Cheryl worked in a gloppy blizzard to get everyone registered.

Richard and Steve, Christine, Von and Cindy helped with the timing and finish crew. Ruth, Fred, Tara, Marylou, Von, Cindy and Christine covered the awards party. Stan, Nicky, Pat, Lewey and Christine helped with course set up and take down. John, Taro, Derek, Jan and Kevin helped with way finding new routes. Kathy and Annie helped to test out the new routes and assess their skiability. The Snomads and the intrepid Nathan were a great help with grooming, especially given the big dump of snow the night before the races. Alayne took on the job of creating custom awards for the top 3 finishers in each of the races.

The course would never have come together without the cooperation of private landowners, CIRI Corporation, the Kenai Peninsula Borough, and McNeil Canyon Elementary School. We can only ski where we are allowed to ski, and that is up to the landowners.

Thanks also to our commercial sponsors. Fritz Creek General Store helped underwrite our awards party. Ulmer’s offered discounts on race supplies. And K-Bay Café kicked in for door prizes.

It’s a heart-warming thing to see people from 7 years old to 70 come out and enjoy a day of fun on the snow. Thanks so much for sharing your boundless enthusiasm. Give yourselves a big high five!

Deland Anderson, Marathon Coordinator

Kachemak Nordic Ski Club.

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