Letters: Readers weigh in on issues of the day
Irresponsible water users harm others
My father who lives in Flora Vista told me recently that he was going to pay someone to clean the ditch from above his house to an area close to the river. He stated he was tired of getting flooded out because no one cleans the portion of the ditch that is by their property.
He has tried to find someone in the county who is responsible for it, but has been told no one is responsible. There have been county prisoners working on private property nearby in the past, why not get them on this job? After all, my father pays his taxes just like the private citizens who have been lucky enough to get free labor to clean their private land.
North of my father people will let the water run off of their land for days at a time because they are "irrigating" grass for their cattle and horses. In the meantime the water is passing through tons of horse and cattle manure directly into the river. There are many areas of standing water nearby which is a haven for mosquitoes and any infectious diseases they may carry. He has also had a hard time getting anyone out to spray something to kill these mosquitoes.
A novel idea would be for those who use irrigation to do something besides turn a valve on and let the water run for days on end. How about making an attempt to clear the brush and trees that are growing in the ditches causing people down stream to get flooded by the never ending stream of water.
It's a shame that my father has had to retain a lawyer to get people to control their water runoff because he is getting flooded. It is also a shame that a retired man on a fixed income has to pay someone to do something that others should already be doing.
We like to talk about accountability for our actions, but talk is cheap when this kind of thing is happening to my father and his neighbors who have also been flooded out every year.
Back to the days of burning rivers
Trump and Republican leaders are unapologetically focused on removing all regulations and laws that were established to safeguard the American people from industries that pollute our environment. Scott Pruitt's selection to head the Environmental Protection Agency is proof of their intent. They call it business friendly.
Have people forgotten the reasons why these regulations were put in place? Industry leaders are focused on profits. Historically they have shirked responsibility for burning rivers, smog, high cancer rates, lead and mercury poisoning, extreme weather events and extinctions.
The 99 percent of Americans will pay with their health and tax dollars.
Lovejoy disappoints constituent
Commissioner Linda Lovejoy:
You ran for President of the great Navajo Nation on a campaign filled with promises of providing basic necessities such as clean water to the people, but now that you have been elected to a position on the Public Regulations Commission where you have had the full ability to help provide that very necessity to your constituents you have failed to do so.
As we speak the people of the Harvest Gold subdivision within YOUR district continues to struggle to survive without drinkable water and its been well over 200 days!
You have refused to hear our pleas for help, have turned your back on us and repeatedly walked out of meetings. You couldn't even take the time to continue listening at the order to show cause hearing on Animas Valley Water held in Aztec, instead you left hours early while testimony continued on into the late hours of the night without you.
On multiple occasions you have demonstrated a dangerous lack of understanding regarding the severity of the water situation plaguing your own district. On one occasion you even implied that residents have running water and therefore shouldn't be so upset, although the dangerous water running through Harvest Gold resident's taps is good for little more than flushing toilets and is not safe for drinking or bathing in.
For shame that you are the elected PRC commissioner for OUR district. The residents of San Juan County deserve far better than the lack of service you have provided to us. We deserve better than a commissioner that repeatedly defends the corrupt water company and its owner.
We deserve a commissioner that stands up for his or her constituents and not only represents our rights as customers to fair billing and business practices but also our right to clean potable water as a basic human necessity. I hope that the voters of San Juan County know that you do not have our best interests at heart.
I hope they know that you have been presented several opportunities to help our situation and have shamefully squandered them.
Heather Lamprecht, proud San Juan County taxpayer, voter and AV water customer