Press-Republican

December 21, 2012

Letters to the Editor: Dec. 21, 2012


Press-Republican

---- — Orphanage roof

TO THE EDITOR: I would like to publicly acknowledge the contributions a Plattsburgh business has recently made to a new nonprofit organization.

In October, I traveled to Grand Goâve, Haiti, to interview for a position as the director of Be Like Brit Orphanage, a newly constructed orphanage built in memory of Britney Gengel, a 19-year-old from Massachusetts killed in the 2010 earthquake.

Upon my return, I was approached by Brian Monahan, president of Monahan Brothers Inc., a commercial roofing and sheet metal company in Plattsburgh. Brian had seen photos of my trip and noticed that the building’s 11,000-square-foot roof appeared to be unfinished. He inquired as to what would be done with the roof, and when I informed him that it was to be left “as is,” Brian and Monahan Brothers really stepped up to the plate.

After Hurricane Sandy swept across Haiti and its heavy rains damaged the roof, Brian was able to secure a donation from one of his suppliers to properly finish the roof. Some 100 five-gallon pails of materials were shipped to Massachusetts free of charge.

Brian then arranged to send himself and a team of his employees to Haiti to professionally install the roof on the Be Like Brit Orphanage.

As the new director of the orphanage, I’d like to thank Brian and Bridget Monahan and Adam Donohue and Lanai Monahan, all of Plattsburgh, for their materials, their time and their dedication to this project, simply because they were moved by the story.

How great it is to see local businesses helping in our very global world.

JONATHAN H. LaMARE

Be Like Brit Orphanage

Grand Goâve, Haiti

 

Cliff is a bluff

TO THE EDITOR: As one of the organizers of the recent event at Rep. Bill Owens’s office, I’d like to clarify our position a bit more.

Isn’t it great, by the way, that we have a hometown newspaper that takes its citizens concerns seriously?

We were saying it’s not a cliff; it’s a slope. There’s no need to be frightened of it. There’s no need to give away the farm, nor a single acre.

Sure, there are issues that need to be addressed, but not before Dec. 31. No deal is better than a bad deal. It’s better to let the Bush tax cuts expire than to agree to things that will hurt our people more in the long term. Taxes are not due on Jan. 1, but April 15.

I’m hopeful that the problems can be solved in the new Congress, since there will be fewer obstructionists then, thanks to a great deal of grassroots efforts on the elections, all around the country. Holding the whole country hostage to foist the whims of a few on it is unpatriotic at best, perhaps even treasonous. The people have spoken: enough!

Look at your pay stubs. Social Security withholdings are in a box marked FICA. There’s another box for general income-tax withholdings. They are separate funds.

SS is self-sustaining, not part of the general fund, doesn’t come from the budget and won’t balance it. It’s not part of the deficit and won’t reduce it. And my Medicare premiums come out of my Social Security check. It’s not an “entitlement” in the sense in which the word has come to be used.

That “cliff” is just a bluff, which needs to be called, not caved in to.

MARY-ALICE SHEMO

People for Positive Action chair