Opinion: writer calls letter-writer way out of line

Letter writer called out of line

Last week’s letter by the Rogers writer who unloaded his venom of unreasonable anger about taxes and government on Don Heinzman was way out of line.

If anyone has written extensively over many years in support of reasonable progress in the Elk River area, has chaired and attended countless local organization meetings to build consensus on local issues, and sacrificed countless personal hours in that support, it is Don Heinzman.

True to Don’s humble nature, he left this community quietly, expecting no accolades for his fine service. I, for one, am ashamed that the one commentary to surface is one that is derogatory and inaccurate.

Thank you, Mr. Heinzman, for your many efforts, your tireless spirit and your gracious service to this community. — Donald Strei, Elk River


Elections too far away to predict

Likely support for DFL again in 2014?

The 2014 midterm elections are only 10 months away, and Don Heinzman is able to predict that the DFL will garner the support of Minnesota voters. Either Mr. Heinzman is the reincarnation of Edgar Cayce or on an early media blitz to help further his personal agenda.

In the world of politics, 10 months is an eternity, and the fortunes of each candidate can change several times over.

I would hope that each Minnesota voter will listen to the facts, learn where each candidate stands on the critical issues, consider their record and vote based on the most current information, and not be swayed by early editorial opinions. — Terry Choate, Elk River 


Recycling deposits add up to bad idea

Do the real math on the proposed container deposit system, and you’ll find that a bottle bill costing more than $219 million a year will only get us an extra 2 percent on top of our total recycling rate of 46 percent.

That’s because beverage containers make up only about 4 percent of all trash generated in the state. When we put this in perspective of the overall recycling rate, a container deposit only gets us from 46 percent to 48 percent.

So after we invest $219 million in a duplicative recycling system that requires residents to sort out bottles and cans, drive them to a redemption center, sort them again, get them counted and get the deposits back, the result is a 2 percent increase in recycling?

Right, it’s ludicrous. It’s really just a tax — a tax that will be used to pay for new redemption and processing centers and a costly “Beverage Container Recycling Organization” that will have taxing authority to raise fees for yet unidentified costs.

And, by the way, there will be limited redemption centers in Greater Minnesota, maybe one per county. So will senior citizens and busy parents spend the time, gas money and effort to cart these materials halfway across the county to redeem their bottles and cans? Probably not. Again, it’s just a tax.

So, listen to the experts: the private recycling industry. We have made recycling convenient and easy through single-sort recycling, and we need to expand these programs throughout Minnesota. So why change a good thing by making it more difficult? The cost surely isn’t worth the benefit. — William Keegan, P.E. VP Dem-Con Companies (Editor’s note: Keegan is the chairman of the Minnesota Chapter of the National Waste & Recycling Association.)