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Letters to the editor: Proposition 15, protecting salt ponds, women in office

Healthy land grows next to salt ponds at Bedwell Bayfront Park in Menlo Park on Dec. 17, 2018. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Please address sea level rise

One of the worst companies in the world for human rights violations and environmental degradation wants to build a small city the size of Belmont in the Bay. The Trump administration brought back an environmentally destructive project by dumping the salt pond Baylands out of the Clean Water Act.

Trump has also made it easier for corporations to kill the shorebirds that nest at the salt ponds by diluting the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. And Trump has further narrowed the Clean Water Act to eliminate additional bodies of water. California responded last week with a state law enshrining protection for migratory birds and a new state regulation setting definitions that expand protection to smaller wetlands and seasonal waterways.

Now we need local jurisdictions like Redwood City and Menlo Park to take similar charge of shoreline protection, including bird nesting habitat. Please save the salt ponds for open space.

Gladwyn d'Souza

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Co-chair of the Conservation Committee, Sierra Club — Loma Prieta chapter

Yes on Prop. 15

We're all getting tested in ways nobody could've expected, and we're lucky to have Gov. Newsom and all those on the frontlines leading us through this crisis. But there's no sugarcoating it: Our schools, essential workers and local governments are facing unprecedented threats of budget cuts.

We have some tough times ahead of us, and we're going to need reasonable solutions to claw our way out of this crisis.

The Schools & Communities First initiative, now Proposition 15 on the November ballot, garnered a record 1.7 million signatures of support. It would close corporate property tax loopholes to bring back $12 billion locally for our schools, essential workers, and critical local services while protecting homeowners and renters, small businesses, and agriculture. What's more, research has shown that only 10% of the biggest, wealthiest commercial and industrial properties would generate 92% of the new revenue — meaning a fraction of top corporations would finally pay their fair share.

Simply put, we can't afford corporate tax loopholes at the expense of our schools and local services anymore.

Eva Orbuch

Senior community organizer, Innovate Public Schools

Women in office

There has been much coverage of the fact that many more women are running for office than in years past both here in Silicon Valley and the country at large. I'd like to comment on why it is important that women have a seat at all levels of government. It is not that women are better than men. It is because women govern differently than men. Studies show that women are more collaborative, less partisan and more goal-oriented than men. In other words, women "get things done." In today's world where the word "government" is often synonymous with "gridlock," this is important.

A local volunteer nonpartisan organization called WIRE for Women helps elect and appoint women to local offices. This pipeline of women will help "get things done" when given a chance to sit at the tables where decisions are made.

Remember, Margaret Thatcher famously said "If you want something said, ask a man; if you want something done, ask a woman."

Carol Mayer Marshall

Founder and president emeritus, WIRE for Women

Claire Place, Menlo Park

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Letters to the editor: Proposition 15, protecting salt ponds, women in office

by / Almanac

Uploaded: Sun, Jul 26, 2020, 9:38 am

Please address sea level rise

One of the worst companies in the world for human rights violations and environmental degradation wants to build a small city the size of Belmont in the Bay. The Trump administration brought back an environmentally destructive project by dumping the salt pond Baylands out of the Clean Water Act.

Trump has also made it easier for corporations to kill the shorebirds that nest at the salt ponds by diluting the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. And Trump has further narrowed the Clean Water Act to eliminate additional bodies of water. California responded last week with a state law enshrining protection for migratory birds and a new state regulation setting definitions that expand protection to smaller wetlands and seasonal waterways.

Now we need local jurisdictions like Redwood City and Menlo Park to take similar charge of shoreline protection, including bird nesting habitat. Please save the salt ponds for open space.

Gladwyn d'Souza

Co-chair of the Conservation Committee, Sierra Club — Loma Prieta chapter

Yes on Prop. 15

We're all getting tested in ways nobody could've expected, and we're lucky to have Gov. Newsom and all those on the frontlines leading us through this crisis. But there's no sugarcoating it: Our schools, essential workers and local governments are facing unprecedented threats of budget cuts.

We have some tough times ahead of us, and we're going to need reasonable solutions to claw our way out of this crisis.

The Schools & Communities First initiative, now Proposition 15 on the November ballot, garnered a record 1.7 million signatures of support. It would close corporate property tax loopholes to bring back $12 billion locally for our schools, essential workers, and critical local services while protecting homeowners and renters, small businesses, and agriculture. What's more, research has shown that only 10% of the biggest, wealthiest commercial and industrial properties would generate 92% of the new revenue — meaning a fraction of top corporations would finally pay their fair share.

Simply put, we can't afford corporate tax loopholes at the expense of our schools and local services anymore.

Eva Orbuch

Senior community organizer, Innovate Public Schools

Women in office

There has been much coverage of the fact that many more women are running for office than in years past both here in Silicon Valley and the country at large. I'd like to comment on why it is important that women have a seat at all levels of government. It is not that women are better than men. It is because women govern differently than men. Studies show that women are more collaborative, less partisan and more goal-oriented than men. In other words, women "get things done." In today's world where the word "government" is often synonymous with "gridlock," this is important.

A local volunteer nonpartisan organization called WIRE for Women helps elect and appoint women to local offices. This pipeline of women will help "get things done" when given a chance to sit at the tables where decisions are made.

Remember, Margaret Thatcher famously said "If you want something said, ask a man; if you want something done, ask a woman."

Carol Mayer Marshall

Founder and president emeritus, WIRE for Women

Claire Place, Menlo Park

The Almanac accepts guest opinions of up to 600 words and letters to the editor of up to 300 words. Send signed op-eds and letters to [email protected] by 5 p.m. Monday and noon on Tuesday, respectively.

Comments

Whatever
Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jul 26, 2020 at 12:46 pm
Whatever, Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jul 26, 2020 at 12:46 pm
2 people like this

Gladwyn
What's the name of the developer company and where exactly do they want to develop in the baylands?


Jes' sayin'
Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Jul 27, 2020 at 7:29 pm
Jes' sayin', Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Jul 27, 2020 at 7:29 pm
4 people like this

I'm all in favor of protecting women who have offices in salt ponds.


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