Letters to the Editor

Letters: Nov. 16, 2018

Paraprofessionals deserve pay raise

I am writing to express my support for the paraprofessional educators who work for the Kennewick School District. During my 25 years teaching in the KSD, I saw the dedication, expertise and compassion these women and men share every day with all students, and staff in the KSD. Paraprofessionals work directly with students reinforcing lessons, tutoring students in areas of concern and helping in myriad ways.

Oftentimes students have more contact with paraprofessionals than classroom teachers due to the nature of the different jobs. When paraprofessionals become aware of students lacking school supplies etc., they often buy these supplies with their own money in order to help students be successful.

I encourage the KSD School Board and all others to treat our paraprofessionals with the dignity and respect they deserve and offer them a pay increase. KSD teachers received a pay increase this year due to the McCleary Decision, and it is only fair and logical that paraprofessionals also receive additional compensation.

Kathy Staly, Kennewick

Snake dams not needed to irrigate

The Tri-City Herald edition from Sunday, Oct. 28, contained two pro-dam editorials from other newspapers that both stated that these dams are necessary for irrigation. This is false. The Lower Snake dams are not a requirement for irrigation or any other water draws.

Large quantities of water are drawn from the undammed area in our own Hanford Reach of the Columbia River. Going upstream from the Snyder street boat launch, there is the Richland city water intake. Go up a couple more miles, and you see a pumping station that delivers water to the Horn Rapids triangle agricultural fields. Still further up, you come to the large water intake for the Columbia Generating Station. On up to the old Hanford town site, there is an old pump house used before the Manhattan Project. The town of White Bluffs had a similar pump house. Wonder how they did this back then without dams? And how about the water used by the Manhattan Project reactors?

If the dams were removed, irrigators might have to extend their pipes a little, but they would still be able to draw water from the river with minimal investment.

Stan Kuick, Richland

Herald leaned GOP on Nov. 7, 8

In the 2018 election, Democrats took seven governorships, three state attorneys general, six state chambers, and broke Republican supermajorities in three state legislatures in addition to flipping the House by gaining 35 more seats - a clear rebuke of Donald’s administration and the sycophantic Republican Congressional leadership.

Unfortunately, the Herald chose to publish a Republican-themed issue on Nov. 7, beginning with a front page headline “Democrats gain ground, but ‘blue wave’ misses Senate” which accompanied an article stating that, by midnight, the Democrats hadn’t flipped the House - despite the flip being reported on live national news before 9 p.m. Nov. 8’s Herald still did not announce the House’s Democratic shift in its headlines. Instead, readers were treated to an article boasting “Four election takeaways for the Republicans,” accompanied by a half-page full-color photo of one of Donald’s rabble-rousing rallies.

The Herald’s headline about Newhouse’s sweeping re-election was well-deserved coverage. But otherwise, for two days, the Herald read like a Republican post-apocalyptic survival pamphlet. Even if the majority of the Herald’s readership is Republican, Americans choosing to reinstate checks and balances in our government should be reported as good news, not the end of the world.

Mike Wilson, Richland