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Why such negativity about housing in S’side?

Prosser, Grandview and Zillah have each added new residential areas with fine homes in the past 10 years.

I am curious to know why there is such intense, negative feelings in Sunnyside against this type of housing.

/s/ Alice Chopper, Sunnyside

Memorial garden workers lauded

City of Sunnyside staff wishes to thank all of you who participated in the creation of a memorial garden for Mark Egemo in front of City Hall. When Mark passed away he left so many friends who wished to do something in his memory, and the garden idea was proposed.

Sorry it took so long, but there have been a lot of changes within the city and at times this project got put on hold, but never forgotten.

Thank you to Martin Campbell, who spent too many hours to count at City Hall sculpting out the design of the garden; to Mike Storms, Andy Stamschror, Tom Byers and Bill Eikenbary for putting in the fountain; to AJ's Crushing and Concrete for donating the concrete for the patio; and the guys from Mountain States Construction for finishing it for us.

There are so many other people who contributed to this garden besides city staff, and we hope we don't overlook anyone, but thank you to Greg Meshke, Spink Engineering, Bestebreur Bros. Construction, Bruce and Eleanor Epps, Martin and Margie Campbell, Kristina Knott, Bob Hall, Mike Bermudez, Merck Construction, Central Washington Home Center, Jackie Mendoza-Maya, PS Northwest Construction, Gene Means, and Mike and Dolores Hutchinson.

The next time you have occasion to visit City Hall, please take time to sit and relax in Mark's garden, listen to the fountain and enjoy a few quiet moments.

/s/ Judie Essary, Sunnyside

Social contract must be honored

Grandview has a social contract with its citizens. Citizens pay taxes for excellent infrastructures and community services, and the city government provides them. This has worked very well in Grandview.

We have a great sense of community pride around those structures and systems our city provides. However, as citizens we have a responsibility to provide the funding to keep and improve the infrastructures and services the community deserves. Our citizens, including our most important asset—our children—deserve the best we can provide.

The existing pool was built in 1955, 50 years ago this summer. It needs to be replaced—PERIOD!

We are the citizens of Grandview and we must live up to our civic responsibility to do our share in the social contract in this community.

The National Guard Armory, Country Park, the upgrading of playground equipment, our excellent city work force, our fire station, our senior center and our excellent schools—they are all products of our citizens living up to their civic responsibilities to make sure Grandview supports and is supported by its citizens.

Vote YES for the aquatic center on May 17. Responsible citizenship requires it.

/s/ Mike Horner, Grandview

Voting by mail formula for fraud

Our county auditor, linked with the Yakima Herald editorial board, is endorsing a move to more efficient elections—vote by mail. They disparage our brand new million dollar system as new voting gizmos and nothing but a band-aid to replace antiquated punch-card ballots. Quite a change from last year. Words like futuristic, state of the art and the complete solution for the Help America Vote Act come to mind.

Quick and easy works for a lot of things. Voting is not one of them.

The truth is, vote by mail is a formula for fraud, and nationwide it's the preferred method. Determined, unscrupulous individuals or groups have little problem when voting by mail (even with first time voter requirements) to vote more than once, for someone else or for someone whom doesn't exist. Officials will answer that it is overstated, and that they have no proof of fraud.

The fact is, they have insufficient methods to detect most of it. Stop and think about vote by mail. From beginning to end no one ever has to see the voter's face. No person determines that you are who you say you are, or that the person you say you are exists. Eighty-two percent of Americans believe people should be required to show a driver's license or some form of photo ID before they are allowed to vote.

The auditor can not force mandatory vote by mail without approval of our local elected officials. Let them know what you think.

/s/ Bill Lover, Yakima

Lifeguard supports new aquatic center

On May 17, Grandview voters will go to the polls to decide the outcome of the proposed aquatic center. As a lifeguard at the current pool, I have witnessed first-hand the need for a new facility.

The facility in its current condition is unsuitable for diving boards and for use by younger pool patrons because of the depth of the shallow end. The shower facilities are antiquated and pose some sanitation challenges.

Being a lifeguard, I have observed how much our community is in need of a new facility. There are many limitations as to what the patrons are able to participate in at the current pool because of its life span and condition.

A new facility would form a sense of community pride and would create recreational options for the entire community. A zero depth pool would improve swim lessons for the younger children. Currently, the lifeguards must insert docks into the shallow end to enable them to provide quality swim lessons to the young children.

I have also been a member of the Grandview Neptune swim team for nine years. An Olympic size pool would allow the Neptunes to become more active with the league by hosting better competitive events, such as regionals and championships. These events draw in teams and supporters from throughout the Valley, who bring business to our community.

I support the proposed aquatic center, as it would improve community unity by providing recreational activities for families and patrons of all ages. A new facility would greatly improve the landscape of our community.

As a resident of Grandview, I am willing to invest in our community's future by supporting the aquatic center. Just reaching the age of majority, I look forward to casting my first vote in favor of the proposed aquatic center.

/s/ Rita Morales, Grandview lifeguard

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