Letters to the Editor

Many contributed to success of holiday light display

When chosen to be on “The Great Christmas Light Fight” we had no idea of the time commitment and work it would take to do this TV show. (It took) over 100 hours of filming, and decorating in 110 degree summer heat.

None of this would have been possible if not for the quick-thinking Chamber of Commerce. Jill Lagan and staff fielded the call from ABC, after we had declined the invitation to compete. Jill convinced us to think of Boulder City and the exposure of a national network TV show. They arranged the tractor, sleigh, Mr. and Mrs. Claus, Jingle Cat, elf, and the viewing event.

Thank you to the people of Boulder City, who set an ABC record. Ms. Taniya Nayak said on national TV “Boulder City this is the biggest, best crowd ever,” showing the country how a small town gets things done.

Thank you police, fire and permit department; Mike Pacini for hosting the reveal and viewing event; Hali Bernstein Saylor (Boulder City Review), and Kathy Hicks (Boulder City Social) for keeping the town in the loop and the great stories; the Boulder City Rotary clubs and Albertsons for donating 4,000 candy canes; PostNet for expediting the handouts; Boulder Dam Hotel for hosting Ms. Nayak; Little City Grille for feeding the huge, hungry crew at midnight; Abby Palmer for home-cooked meals; the Combs family for keeping us in sweets and goodies; Kim Dennett for the “winner, winner chicken dinner;” Santa and Mrs. Claus, Jingle Cat (Marcie Gibson) and her elf, Brina Marcus; Clint Spencer for the tractor and helping with the street lights; 28 Sunflowers Photography, Boulder Creek, Signmasters, and Andy and Lynnette Anderson for their nightly help.

Thanks to the neighbors who put up with the thousands of people who clogged Fifth Street every night.

Our final count: 12,000 candy canes, 3,000 photos handed out, estimated 23,000 people visited our display. The out-of-town visitors said how great Boulder City is, and they intend to make this a yearly tradition.

Dale Ryan and Dyanah Musgrave

Action to protect Gold Butte as national monument applauded

The opposition to President Barack Obama’s national monument designation for Gold Butte is bewildering. Sen. Dean Heller is “terribly disappointed” and would have preferred “an open and public congressional process.” Really?

What did Sen. Heller do to advance protections for Gold Butte through Congress? In fact, despite the fact that Sen. Harry Reid began advocating for protections as early as 2002 and Rep. Dina Titus after him, they were unable to secure what a majority of Nevadans wanted: protection of Gold Butte’s unique natural, cultural, and historic treasures.

Additional opposition has emerged from the Bundy family, perhaps over the issue of grazing cattle. But their protest is misplaced. In fact, Clark County prohibited grazing in the area 20 years ago to protect threatened and endangered species.

We’ll never really know what is behind Sen. Heller’s disappointment, the Bundy family’s protestations, or the reasons why a small number of others are so opposed to the designation.

What we do know is that many more people are celebrating the national monument designation for Gold Butte than those who oppose it. Along with nearly three-quarters of Nevadans, thousands of grass-roots advocates, local and state officials, business people in Southern Nevada and southern Utah, and visitors from here and abroad who have been awed by Gold Butte’s many wonders, I applaud the tenacity of Sen. Harry Reid and Rep. Dina Titus. And I applaud President Obama, who, in the face of congressional intransigence, has ensured that Gold Butte can be enjoyed for generations to come.

Mary D. Wammack

Citizens need more opportunities to vote on issues that affect them

In a recent publication, Bruce Woodbury states that Boulder City’s charter “… is unique in restricting our city council and requiring direct votes of our citizens on so many issues.” He cites our founders in asserting that we are a republic where “… sovereignty is vested in our people and delegated to elected individuals.” He further asserts that a republic “… should rarely require a vote of the people, and only for urgent matters.”

I would suggest that we consider the example of the New England states. Town meetings in these states, general meetings of all citizens, decide such issues as legislative policy and budgets for their local communities. This form of direct democracy has been practiced in these states since the 1700s.

Rather than restrict the number of issues we vote on, these opportunities should be expanded. After all, sovereignty lies with the people, not the City Council. Direct democracy has many advantages such as encouraging active participation resulting in citizens having a stake in the process. Direct votes reduce (hopefully eliminate) the influence of special interests and better reflect the will of the citizen body.

Boulder City citizens are perfectly capable of determining whether or not they want a particular policy implemented and should have more opportunities — not less — to directly vote on these issues, which, after all, affect our lives and our community.

Previous City Council efforts to restrict the right of citizens to initiate ballot measures for a vote by individually suing signers of petitions failed; apparently this is an effort to convince citizens that (the) city charter should be amended to restrict matters decided directly by voters. We should reject any attempt to amend the charter to restrict matters that are determined by direct vote of the citizens.

Dan Jensen

Class project seeks postcards about area’s geography, history

I am writing to request postcards with historical or geographic information about your region from your readers. My fifth-grade class is collecting postcards from all 50 states as part of our U.S. history studies. We would like to learn more about your area.

You can send postcards to Fifth grade, Choteau Elementary School, 102 Seventh Ave. NW, Choteau, Montana, 59422.