Mabton team, fans

true sportsmen

First, I would like to congratulate the Mabton Viking boys basketball team on its season, and also wish them luck this coming weekend in their quest for a State 'B' tournament bid.

Last weekend, Riverside Christian played Mabton for the 'B' District tournament

championship in Sunnyside. The tremendous sportsmanship shown by Mabton's players, coaches and fans says a lot about the school and community. Our Riverside players and coaches would like to make sure you all know that we feel you're not only tough to beat on the court, but also off the court!

Again, good luck Vikings!

/s/ Bruce Siebol, head boys basketball coach, Riverside Christian High School, Yakima

Library interesting

I will tell you some reasons I like the public library. It has movies, a variety of books and books on tape.

The reason I like the movies is because there are adult and children selections. We first were introduced to Anne Shirly of Anne of Green Gables when we checked out the movie. Also, you can check movies out for a whole week.

I also like that they have a variety of books. The public library has adult, young adult and children's books. Everyone in my family can find something enjoyable to read. I can always find some of my favorite books—"The Cabin Faced West" and "Laura Ingalls Wilder." We can check these books out for 30 days.

Finally, our public library has books on tape. "Hank the Cow Dog" is our family favorite. Books on tape are good for long trips and being in the car in general. These, unlike the movies, are checked out for 30 days, just like a book.

As you can see, I find things interesting at the public library. Maybe you will, too.

/s/ Jessie Robert, fifth grader, Chief Kamiakin Elementary School

DSN exerting political influence

The Daily Sun News continues to be an opinion-paper of the DSN management and not a news-paper. What was labeled to be the opinion of Mike Kantman (written in the “Kunkler should be manager” propaganda piece that appeared 2-25-04) seems out of character for Mike and more in line with the Old Guard effort of the Daily Sun News management style to exert its dominating political influence upon our community.

Mark Kunkler is a good guy. He is an attorney. These do not qualify him for the position of City Manager. Some old political associations exist from the Leo Fancy Regime that would be unfavorable to Mark’s being City Manager. Although the Daily Sun News favored that brand of politics (reference old newspapers), as a prudent department head, Mark was obliged to support those politics as part of his job description.

To the detriment of Sunnyside, The Daily Sun News was successful in its campaign to oust Pete Squires. Pete is a professional planner and was an excellent asset to our community. He refused to surrender to the control of special interest groups and only wished to serve the best interests of the residents of Sunnyside. The Daily Sun News has a long history of being opposed to those types of community servants. The Daily Sun News “management think tank” again emerged in Mike’s article to campaign for Marshall Doak as City Planner. Marshall is not a professional city planner and already has a job. The connections of his job would have a conflict of interest to the position of city planner. Apparently,

“conflict of interest” is desirable to the campaign efforts of the Daily Sun News.

Then, Kantman’s personal column continues to carry the torch lit by Bob Story as it bashes Councilman Don Vlieger and Don’s efforts to steadfastly represent the community in employee relations. Mike ponders and expands upon petty minutia while ignoring the outstanding policies Don has assisted to develop for the benefit of Sunnyside. To Bob and management; a staff meeting does not constitute research, nor do management memos substitute for investigative reporting.

/s/ James E. Stevens, DMD, Sunnyside

Kantman misses many points

Per Michael Kantman's personal column on Feb. 25: Mike is one journalist that I have respected for a long time. But I feel he missed many points in his column.

Without a doubt, Mark Kunkler is as fine of a gentleman as you will find anywhere. Yes, he would make a good city manager. Does he even want it, is the question. If so, he no doubt has applied for it. And if the City Council thinks he is the right man for the job, they will do the right thing and appoint him manager.

But are there other people out there who may be as qualified? If so, let's find out. Let's go through the process. And if he is the best and wants it, I would say it would be a great choice.

I do feel the city has some real fine city employees. Many, second to none. But the Council is not elected to represent the employees. They are elected to represent the TAXPAYER. And Mike did not once mention the taxpayer in his column. These are the people that should never be forgot. They are the bread and butter of Sunnyside. Most of the city employees are represented by a union. The unions are the ones to look out for these employees. It was a huge blunder on Mike's part to think the Council should worry about the employees. They should not. They need to worry about taxpayers only. The city manager then must worry about the Council and the employees. This is the manager's job, totally.

As far as the employees and councilmen going at it weekly, it does not concern me. If we are open minded, we can learn a lot from the exchanges. These employees think they are not replaceable. The Council thinks they are. So, you have two sides who disagree. What's the big deal? Disagreements have been going on ever since the beginning of this world. If you don't have disagreements, then you don't have a free society.

Mike mentions that the Council should quit micro-managing. Are they really micro-managing or are they trying to get a point across that no one wants to listen to? It is the city manager's responsibility to bring this micro-managing into the flow of city business. A good city manager can and will confront anything he thinks is out of place for the good of the city. If he is afraid to do this then he does not belong in his position. But the city manager must be willing to listen to and accept all direction from the Council.

Mike mentions at the very end of his column that "if an employer treasures an employee, the employee will treasure the job. Is that so hard to understand?" Yes, that is very hard to understand because it is not true. I would say it may be more accurate in a privately owned business. But most definitely not in government or the corporate world with all the unions today. It is not the human nature of 100 percent of humanity to treasure their jobs, even with outlandish pay. It just isn't so and never will be. IMPOSSIBLE!

/s/ Don Padelford, Sunnyside


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