Lab managers didn't deserve new contract

Every year the National Nuclear Security Agency (NNSA) evaluates the Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) that manages Livermore Lab. This LLC consists of Bechtel Corp., the University of California and other weapons contractors.

First, the LLC self-evaluates. This year it gave itself very high marks. Then the NNSA made its own evaluation and found the LLC did not perform as well as it evaluated itself. Eighty percent is considered the standard for the LLC to receive a bonus and automatic contract renewal.

The NNSA rating was 78 percent, which is below the reward standard. However, Neile Miller, the fee determining official, wrote a one-paragraph addendum giving the bonus and contract renewal to the LLC despite her agency's own acknowlegement that it was undeserved. Miller was subsequently promoted to NNSA deputy administrator. In view of the current budget cuts, these kinds of undeserved bonuses do not make sense. The LLC benefits even though it has not performed as it was contracted to do. Is it right that this corporate contractor benefits while so many other beneficial government programs are being cut?

Beverly King

Livermore

Science can't answer crucial questions


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The effectiveness of the scientific method to understand how the forces of nature function today and to develop technology based on this can't be disputed.

However, the proclamations of scientists about the distant past and future of the universe are questionable because they are frequently based on faulty reasoning. First, the history of science shows us that it's wrong to presume that we now adequately understand all of the natural forces responsible even for how the universe works today, much less in the past or future. Second, the common assumption that supernatural influence is impossible is a logical fallacy because it is an unknowable universal negative. And God intervening in the universe in the beginning or end or, occasionally, in between wouldn't at all undermine the natural order on which science relies.

Actually, miracles are only seen as such because the natural order (to which they are exceptions) is assumed. So, allowing for such divine influence doesn't prevent science from being done today, but it does mean that the scientific method simply can't tell us how the universe and human beings came to be or where we are going.

Christopher Andrus

Dublin

Vote Miller, keep Pleasanton just fine as it is

I am writing this in support of David Miller, who is running for Pleasanton City Council. I have primarily two reasons for doing so, and their names are Andrew and Madison. It is very important to their grandmother and I that they are able to grow up in a Pleasanton like their mother did, a Pleasanton that has kept its small-town charm and remains on sound financial ground. We need someone who will fight as much as reasonably possible to keep to the city's general plan that was approved by the voters of Pleasanton and minimize high-density housing. His business acumen will be an asset to the council when assigned to evaluate complex issues and alternatives that are so important to making the best decisions for the City of Pleasanton. More simply stated, it's for the children (and grandchildren).

Gary Kinsman

Pleasanton

Narum is the best pick for City Council

Kathy Narum is the only candidate who has placed her time and energy forward on a constant basis to improve Pleasanton by active participation in processes that are effective and democratic. She has provided distinguished service as a Park and Recreation Commissioner and as a Planning Commissioner.

Before you can address problems, projects and issues, you must understand them. Kathy researches issues, diligently completes all homework, invites and carefully listens to citizen input, then supports solutions benefiting the entire community.

Kathy is a team player. She knows moving forward requires working together to seek mutually satisfying solutions. Through effective persuasion, Kathy will be a strong voice on the Council promoting fiscal stability and responsible growth.

Pleasanton is not an island able to move forward without consideration of adjacent cities, the county and state. Kathy understand the structure of government. She knows we must actively cooperate with other agencies and jurisdictions to address common issues while striving to improve our community and maintain local values. Kathy Narum is the candidate most qualified to effectively serve in a top leadership position.

Mail in that vote! Vote Kathy Narum for Pleasanton City Council.

Dolores Bengtson

Pleasanton

Miller will fight for local control

I have known David Miller, his wife Laura, and their three daughters for several years. As a City Council member, he will put the interests of Pleasanton residents and taxpayers above those of outside special interests. David is aware of the efforts to determine Pleasanton's future by unelected regional governmental boards. As a proponent of local control, David has spoken out in front of these regional boards in favor of retaining local control. David has also been on the forefront of the unfunded liability issue facing Pleasanton and has been instrumental in bringing the issue to the attention of residents and taxpayers. That is why I trust him as a City Council member to bring transparency to local government. He will keep residents informed about the issues that will affect them. That is why I will vote for David Miller and encourage others to vote for him, too.

Suzanne Tringali

Pleasanton

Taxpayers fund most of parks division's budget

In the 2013-2014 budget, the Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation (OHMVR) Division of the California State Parks Department is slated to collect about $81.23 million. Seventy-five percent of that money comes from the motor vehicle fuel tax, representing the tax on more than 150,000,000 gallons of gasoline mostly sold to average drivers. Less than 25 percent will come from entrance fees and Off-Highway Vehicle (OHV) sticker fees. Of that 150,000,000 gallons of gasoline, only 13.3 percent is for registered OHVs.

The OHMVR Division is handed over this fuel tax windfall based on an outdated formula. The state legislature has thus far been unwilling or unable to correct this travesty because of the OHV lobby. OHMVR parks cost six times as much as other state parks to operate, and are the most highly subsidized state parks. Contact your state legislature; tell them that OHMVR can have their 13.3 percent of the gas tax, but please give back our 86.7 percent to fix our roads and other state parks.

Art Hull

Livermore