Can do more with less
At the Oct. 24 city commission meeting, Commissioner Mike Gillman discussed the city's unfunded pension liability. The amount owed is estimated at $26 million to $34 million dollars and is climbing at an alarming rate. It is a financial crisis for city residents.
We need a mayor who understands cash flow statements, balance sheets, and income statements. We need a mayor who knows what needs to be done and has the courage to do it. We need a mayor who has a proven track record of doing more with less. We need Michael Estes.
Vote Michael Estes for mayor.
Vatican opposes ordinances
In 1992 the Vatican instructed Catholics to oppose local non-discrimination ordinances, and I quote, "Finally, where a matter of the common good is concerned, it is inappropriate for church authorities to endorse or remain neutral toward adverse legislation even if it grants exceptions to church organizations and institutions. The church has the responsibility to promote the public morality of the entire civil society on the basis of fundamental moral values, not simply to protect herself from the application of harmful laws."
Authored by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI.
Vote "no" on Proposal 1.
Paul James Nepote
Addressing the issues
I've recently read letters to the editor by Traverse City firefighters and police officers in support of Ralph Soffredine. Yet amazingly, few of them live in the city.
They live in surrounding areas where they spend dramatically less on fire and police services. Though those areas have comparable or greater risks, traffic, population, activities, hotel rooms, real property, etc.
Why are they not encouraging the governmental bodies where they live to significantly increase their property taxes to spend more on fire and police?
Michael Estes is the only mayoral candidate addressing these issues. Please vote for him.
Common sense approach
Jeanine Easterday is running for city commission because she loves our town and region, and has proven this through varied community service.
She does not have an agenda, or narrow single interest.
Please join me in supporting Jeanine Easterday. She is a fair-minded person with a common sense approach to local government.
An intelligent voice
As an avid cyclist and the mother of young children, I plan to vote for Tim Werner for city commissioner. Tim is an advocate for walkable and bikeable cities; he understands the importance of making long-term, forward-thinking decisions for the benefit of our city; and he is an attentive listener. Tim offers a thoughtful intelligent voice to help guide Traverse City through its ever-changing challenges.
Well organized, thoughtful
I've known Michael Estes for years where the two of us have worked together on church and Grouse Society issues. I know Michael to be well organized, thoughtful and, most importantly, financially responsible.
With all the road and pension problems that are troubling government, Michael is exactly the type of individual that we need as mayor of Traverse City. Michael Estes is the only choice for mayor of Traverse City.
Lawrence G. Clayton
Estes reduced rates
Michael Estes worked hard to secure a rate reduction on our monthly Light & Power bills. Ralph Soffredine was the only Light & Power board member to vote against this reduction. Traverse City Light & Power is a good and important utility but I feel (like Mr. Estes) that its operations will benefit from public input.
As city police chief, Ralph Soffredine scrutinized the actions of us Traverse City residents. In contrast, Mayor Estes was willing to scrutinize the actions of a corporation. I consider this a fundamental difference. I will vote for Michael Estes.
No reason for proposal
If you look at the Constitution for the State of Michigan, you will see in Article 1, Section 1, that the government of the state is instituted for the equal benefit, security and protection of the people living in Michigan. There is no reason for the Traverse City ordinance on discrimination. The state constitution holds a higher power than a local ordinance and already secures equality for all.
By voting "no," you will already be standing for equality. To do otherwise would be both unconstitutional and unnecessary.
Has earned re-election
I support Barbara Budros for re-election to the city commission.
Barbara has tirelessly questioned projects when it would have been easier to simply approve them as is. She has voted for those projects which she deemed were of economic benefit to the city.
Barbara does not back down from tough issues. She questioned a local biomass plant and was criticized for her attempts to shed light on tax increment financing.
We all value a vibrant, successful downtown. Barbara is working not to penalize this success, but to spread it by embracing neighborhoods and outlying corridors. Barbara has earned re-election.
Listens to concerns
There is only one candidate for mayor who responds to my calls and emails. That candidate is Michael Estes. We do not always agree, but Mike always listens to my concerns and that is why I am supporting Michael Estes for mayor of Traverse City.
'Special rights' claim code
Seventeen years ago, we chose to make Traverse City our home. Today, our town's welcoming nature is threatened by a possible repeal of our non-discrimination policy.
We have raised our three daughters to believe all people should be treated with respect. We taught them that diversity is something to value and that people with different beliefs and experiences enrich our lives.
Hopefully they understand that when a particular group is accused of wanting "special rights," this is code for trying to justify discrimination against that group.
Vote "yes" on Proposal 1. Let's keep Traverse City welcoming to all our citizens.
Roger Gerstle and Marjie Rich
BATA key to employers
Public transportation is a key utility for forward-looking cities of all sizes.
As local employers recruit staffers from across the country, we must be able to offer what other cities do: simple, usable and logical connections for those whose lifestyles are not inextricably linked with cars.
The Bay Area Transportation Authority's forward-looking proposals are helping to connect the region in sustainable and fruitful ways; support for this millage will help ensure residents and visitors alike will have viable transportation options that save gas, reduce traffic and contribute to a thriving local economy. I urge you to pass the BATA millage.
Prop 1 yes; Budros yes
Vote "yes" on Proposal 1. All people should have equal protections under the law. It provides exactly the same rights to every one of us, regardless of sexual orientation. That's pretty much the point. Special rights have nothing to do with it and are only scare tactics.
Vote for Barb Budros for city commission. Together we have worked to keep the unique small-town character we all love in Traverse City. Protecting our unique neighborhoods while managing essential services, keeping government open and honest and supporting all peoples' rights is important.
Vote yes on Proposal 1 and to re-elect Barb Budros.
The writer is an incumbent city commissioner who is seeking re-election.
The right, sensible thing
Do we really want to reverse progress? Traverse City has already joined other prominent, progressive cities when our city commission passed a Nondiscrimination Ordinance. Now we're being asked to repeal this well-functioning ordinance and go back, by implication, to "favoring" discrimination. It's hard to believe this is for real.
I feel sure, and, of course, very hopeful, that Traverse City residents will do the right and sensible thing by voting "yes" on Proposal One and keep Traverse City a community where we all can expect to be treated with respect and justice.
Invites affirmative action
Traverse City has always attracted the best and brightest — in large measure a tribute to TC's religiously motivated charity and hospitality.
Now, one group that has flourished here under that accommodating charity is demanding special privileges enforced with the power of a divisive law that expressly invites affirmative action, affirmative action that will discriminate against heterosexuals.
Where is the fairness and equality touted by the law's supporters?
It's a bit much. Vote "no" on Proposal 1.
A wise choice for mayor
Local issues and electing qualified candidates for Traverse City is Nov. 8. A vote for Michael Estes for mayor is one for a person to keep Traverse in the right direction.
Knowledge of city government, years of financial experience are important assets he brings to the position.
But it's his caring about how the city spends limited funds, protecting people, the right of workers, our environment and keeping the workforce for projects local when possible.
Time to set aside political differences, vote for experienced people.
Michael Estes is a wise choice to represent and guide our city as its mayor.