It’s your money

Here is more unreported news from the municipal front.

The Idaho Constitution provides: “No county, town, city or other municipal corporation ... shall ever ... raise money for, or make donation or lend its credit to, or in aid of, any ... corporation or association. ... ”

Despite this prohibition, the Lewiston City Council has donated $480,000 to Valley Vision and $147,500 to the Hells Canyon Visitors’ Bureau since 2009, the last year the city has records.

If you assume half the average rate for the 16 additional years of funding, the city has donated about $800,000 of your money to subsidize Lewiston Tribune advertisers and the chamber of commerce.

Even worse is the illegal street tax the city levies disguised as water, wastewater and sanitation fees.

In 2010, as your district judge, I held that a city street maintenance tax disguised as a storm drain fee was unconstitutional. Despite this precedent, the city has charged water $935,000 and wastewater $980,000 since 2013, and sanitation $2,651,894 since 2012 — for a total of $4,566,894 for using city streets.

This is the same stunt the city tried with the storm drain fees. Only God knows what the total would be if earlier records were available.

Now you know why the council raises utility rates every chance it gets.

Since it is your money, I thought you would like to know how it is being spent.

John Bradbury


Dump Trump

The American people are reeling from the coronavirus pandemic. ...

They are suffering from a downward-spiraling economy and yet again are struggling to overcome deep-seated racial injustice after the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police. The absence of effective presidential leadership has exacerbated these crises.

In 1974, President Richard Nixon faced the prospect of impeachment because of the Watergate scandal. At first, congressional Republican support held firm. However, the political tide turned after transcripts of White House tapes revealed a presidential cover-up.

The big moment came in early August when Republican leaders in Congress, led by Sen. Barry Goldwater of Arizona, went to the White House to tell Nixon he no longer had their support and would most likely lose a pending impeachment vote. They made it clear to Nixon that his best choice was to resign.

Republicans now face a somewhat different situation with President Donald Trump. Impeachment has come and gone. The main issues are the president’s character, leadership effectiveness and overall fitness for office. Most congressional Republicans continue to turn a blind eye to his misdeeds. ...

Congressional Republican leaders should ... go to the White House to tell Trump he faces a new political reality: He no longer has their support, and they will back another candidate at the party’s national convention. If this is done soon, there would be enough time to select a different nominee. This might not be a smart political move, but it would be the right thing to do.

Wyatt Coil


Remains optimistic

It has been a difficult spring on many fronts. I’ve been reassured, though, by the community spirit displayed on the Palouse. From patrons purchasing gift cards to help struggling businesses to restaurants providing free dinners for those in need to marches to protest racism and state violence, I’m proud of our community.

This pride and reassurance makes me optimistic that we can work together on other problems we face. The consequences of climate change are coming home to the Palouse — we can see it in changing weather patterns, rising river temperatures and declining fish populations.

Nonetheless, I am optimistic that we can put in the work necessary to achieve a cleaner, safer and healthier future. We can be good stewards of this beautiful place that we all enjoy. We can support our local governments and their efforts at sustainability (for example

And, we can act on a nationwide level as well. There is increasing bipartisan support for H.R. 763, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act ( This act uses the free market to encourage reliable clean energy and technology, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 90 percent by 2050, and give us peace of mind about the future. We can tell our members of Congress to support this important bill.

Casey Johnson


Moving forward

After submitting my previous letter, I realized Lewiston already has some mall space available in the Nez Perce Plaza, appropriately named to house the Nez Perce County Courthouse.

Again, think handicapped accessible, lots of parking, great views from the hill the old Safeway is situated on, all landscaped and, I think, still owned by local citizens. Perhaps other businesses could offer space for attorneys, title companies, etc., as available.

I often thought a restaurant in the back area overlooking the valley from the old Safeway would get good use. Target, the winner in the poll, would be nice in the old mall that has lost retail.

I moved here from Pennsylvania in 1961 and have seen our valley grow and change. Hopefully, once past the present challenge our world is going through, both Lewiston and Clarkston will adapt and go forward as ideas and hopes for our future materialize.

Nan Smith


Opposes Shinn, Burns

With an upcoming election in Asotin County, think: Is blood thicker than water?

What are the two most powerful positions in the county? I believe it’s the county commissioner and the Superior Court judge.

As for Commissioner Brian Shinn, what has he done to reduce the taxes and debt of the taxpayers?

We are now paying for a dead horse (the aquatic center), which the commissioners have refinanced about three times from the original $6.7 million.

Seventeen years later, what is the principal?

Why didn’t a private enterprise build it?

It doesn’t pay for itself.

What about the $2 million the commissioners borrowed without the voters’ approval? What’s that principal and how was it paid?

Does anyone check on the $2 million fire equipment building or the purchase of the church for the fire district?

Why is there a lien on the work done at the cemetery? And when will the port go off the tax rolls?

Since Shinn’s daughter is running for Superior Court judge, ask if blood is thicker than water. What will be done if a conflict occurs?

Which one will step aside?

My opinion is we need more enforcement.

Brooke J. Burns is used to representing for money or rights. She is too liberal for me.

No, I will not vote for Burns or Shinn.

Do your research. Don’t use the good old boy system.

And you worry about protesters? Huh? Dang.

Jim Griffin


Well done

Congratulations to Brooke Henze for being named the Frontier Conference athletics director of the year.

Gary Picone is a tough act to follow and she has done an excellent job. All Warrior sports have something to be proud of.

Also kudos to Lewis-Clark State College and the athletic department for not cutting any sports during the coronavirus pandemic.

I am a big time fan of LCSC basketball, both men’s and women’s.

Go Warriors. And, please, let there be fans.

Tony Bell


Leading the orchestra

Black Lives Matter began as a slogan. I’ve known that without a parade to show me.

It seems like BLM was hijacked by radicals funded by George Soros. What started as peaceful protests was flooded by radicals led by community organizers systematically placed at strategic locations to destroy property, loot, assault and murder innocent people.

BLM is now a racist Democrat political entity. Of course, Antifa joins in to lend its expertise. Antifa is an international construct of listless thugs who revel in destruction. People with that mindset feed on mob mentality.

Politicians capitalize on and engage with the flow. They play act with idiotic displays of idolatry.

I have witnessed in my life steady interracial acceptance by natural means. Radicals despise good-naturedness.

I believe the violence was orchestrated. Composers and conductors orchestrate chaos to generate division.

I see Mike Bloomberg, Dr. and Mrs. Anthony Fauci, Hillary Clinton, Soros and Tom Steyer in the Silicon Valley are the string section.

RINOs (Republicans in name only) and Democrats are the wind instruments.

Syrian Kurds, the Revolutionary Abolitionist Movement, Antifa, BLM and Burn Down the American Plantation are in percussion.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Sen. Chuck Schumer, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler and a cast of characters are doing a Kabuki dance.

Camille Hattrup


No private army required

The Second Amendment gun rights activists who show up armed in cities apparently have no awareness of how frightening they are to others, and no respect for others’ right to live in freedom from fear.

We seem to never read about 2A activists arguing for the Second Amendment’s opening line: “A well-regulated militia ... ” This is the 21st century. What was a well-regulated militia back in our nation’s early years today is known as the Department of Defense. It has more than 1 million active duty servicemen. Considering the massive supply of weapons and ordnance under its control, it has a remarkable safety record. It has kept America a free country, and is likely to continue to do so. No self-appointed groups needed.

Ordinary armed citizens who have appointed themselves to positions of authority over others have a long history of malicious behavior. Those involved in killing Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia is a contemporary example. (They are now in jail and facing multiple charges of murder and assault.) The Ku Klux Klan has a long history of murderous behavior.

We can read in “Forlorn Hope — The Battle of White Bird Canyon and the Beginning of the Nez Perce War” about the non-soldier hothead who started a war that nobody wanted.

Any public gathering can become tense and escalate to a tragedy that wasn’t intended.

It’s time for 2A activists to wake up to others’ right to feel safe when doing something as simple as going shopping. ...

Steve Koehler


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