Mailbag: Poseidon is no good for H.B.

[The Huntington Beach] Poseidon Desalination plan is a boondoggle plan like every one they have proposed since Tampa Bay [in Florida].

They sold the idea of a desalination plant to the Huntington Beach City Council by promising it would never cost the city rate payers because Poseidon was paying for the entire desal plant themselves.

Now, they are planning on floating a bond.

They blamed Tampa Bay [for operational problems] because they claimed Tampa didn't let them finish the project.

Desalination isn't perfected yet and will be another failure that H.B. will be paying for if we go any further with this company from Connecticut.

H.B. doesn't need the water and our streets are going to be dug up to get the water to Costa Mesa where they are planning on selling it. I don't know if it's purchased yet. Many of their deals have fallen through.

Eileen Murphy

Huntington Beach 


Plastic bags are not government issue

This potential ordinance to ban "one time use" plastic bags is akin to gun control, or spay and neuter laws. Criminals will have guns, and irresponsible dog owners will let dogs roam, poop and breed and people who are environmentally insensitive will do as they wish with reckless abandon.

I am environmentally very sensitive but feel this is just a "feel good" proposal and does not, nor will it really remedy the problem, but merely create another level of government and its associated enforcement as well as cost to consumers while making some people feel good.

The idea as one council member described as making extra money for the business owners is a joke and shows a very shallow understanding of business finance (if a business owner relies on fees for plastic bags to make a profit then they should not own a business).

You cannot govern irresponsible people and burden the responsible ones at a cost to them. This is idealistic and, yes, good in its intentions but questionable. As the saying goes, "You cannot change a tiger's stripes." Irresponsible behavior will continue and this law will do nothing to change that.

Most of the waste that piles on our beaches comes down the rivers and flood control channels from miles away. Who educates the folks in those cities and counties whose end product we absorb on our beaches? How about all the RV visitors to our state and city campgrounds in HB from all over?

This is an educational matter not a government matter. Will this law stop the bags washing down the rivers to our beaches from our neighbor's inland? I doubt it, and if you think so you are quite gullible and need to spend time inland educating those folks before they send their trash downstream.

By the way, please provide a definition of "one time use" plastic bags. In our house all bags we use are used several times at a minimum of twice to be environmentally sensitive.

Drew Kovacs

Huntington Beach


Military-style is more than military weapon

Re: "Military weapons are not the problem," Jan. 31 Mailbag:

The letter from Michael Liechty was dangerously misleading.

He substitutes the term "military weapons" for "military-style weapons."  A semi-automatic AR-15 rifle is different than a selective fire or fully automatic M16 rifle. Both can be termed assault rifles that were banned in 1994 for a decade and should be banned today to the general public. 

Both are specifically designed to kill people. They are not primarily hunting or recreational firearms. They both can fire large amounts of bullets quickly with high capacity magazines.

In the wrong hands, they can kill more people at one time than the "vehicles, knives, and clubs" cited by Mr. Liechty. Requiring background checks, closing loopholes and restricting high capacity magazines with armor-piercing ammunition, in addition to banning "military-style" weapons, are prudent precautions in making our society less dangerous. 

Banning motor vehicles, steak knives, and cudgels not so much.

Tim Geddes

Huntington Beach


Affordability is essential to higher education

"It's a simple fact: the more education you have, the more likely you are to have a job and work your way into the middle class," said President Barack Obama in his State of the Union.

However, this "simple fact" contradicts the reality for many college graduates struggling to enter the workforce. An increasing number of graduates are moving back with their families for support after college due to the accumulated debt and lack of job security. The idea of higher education leading to employment is no longer ensured when the costs of education continue to rise.

President Obama addressed the necessity of the government to work on our behalf, and adjust the priorities to guarantee that if we work hard and meet our responsibilities we can get ahead.  

As an advocate for keeping college costs down, President Obama continues to urge the government to create reforms that help make college more affordable through policies such as the Higher Education Act. Affordable education is needed so that graduates can achieve adequate and effective training in order to become independent citizens who responsibly contribute to America's economy.

As master's students preparing to graduate this spring, this reform directly affects the possible outcomes for our employment and financial future.  

Not only will we encounter the stressors that the job search entails such as resume writing and interviews, but also the stressors that come with student loan repayment and responsibilities.

As students, we comprehend and fully support this Higher Education Reform as a means to allow more individuals to pursue affordable, higher education.  Therefore, we encourage Congress and Senate to work proactively, and in a bipartisan effort for the passage of the Higher Education Act.  

Ultimately, our hopes are that higher education will become more accessible and affordable for all, thereby contributing to a flourishing economy.

Christine Le, Julie Le, Ashley Pipes, Joyce Witcher and Lisa Vu

CSULB Master of Social Work Students; Ashley Pipes is a Huntington Beach resident.

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