Stop plutonium shipments to Livermore Lab
Livermore Lab is no longer authorized to handle or store bomb-usable quantities of plutonium, including pits, due to its reduced security status. Yet the current plan sends bomb cores here.
Will this violate the law? I believe the answer is "yes." "Shaking and baking" plutonium cores without the necessary security infrastructure has never been analyzed under the National Environmental Policy Act. One alternative would be to move the diagnostic equipment to the pits, instead of moving pits each time to the diagnostics at Livermore Lab.
A small particle of plutonium, if inhaled, can cause cancer. The shipments will put millions of people at risk from a catastrophic accident, theft or release. You can prevent this. Come to a forum at the Livermore Library on Wednesday to learn how. Check www.trivalleycares.org for details.
Jo Ann Frisch
The leadership from Obama seems missing
When will our president become a leader and not a blamer? What is his plan to resolve our current and ongoing unemployment issue? Also what is the program to reduce spending in the federal government -- maybe a 15 percent pay cut across the board and a self-paid employee retirement for starters?
If he and his social liberal friends would or could understand Basic Economics 101, the problems would be fixed. But he is too busy blaming everyone, after more than four years, except himself for the current and ongoing recession. He needs to put his big-boy pants on and focus on resolving the problems.
I put forth a challenge for him to address these issues.
Leave Ironwood property as it is
Located on the east side of Livermore along East Avenue, the Ironwood (formerly Rhonewood) Apartments feature a large central green space. It was a design feature agreed to by the original developer in 1970 to provide a higher quality of life for the apartment renters by providing recreation areas and avoiding a "cement city look" to the complex (Planning Commission, Feb. 24, 1970). The green space was preserved by zoning the property to a specific high density and approving a site plan that reached that maximum density while including a large central green space
Forty years later, in a rush to build high-density housing within the city's urban boundary, the City of Livermore is entertaining a proposal to replace the Ironwood green space with high-rise apartments and a parking lot. The adjacent street, Norma Way, already suffers excessive on-street parking except near the green space. Ironically, the developer's solution is to build where there currently isn't a parking problem without addressing the existing issue, and if renters don't like the loss of the green space they can rent somewhere else.
I understand the city government is hungry for development dollars and desperate to build high-density housing, but this development makes no sense. It would be to the detriment of renters and homeowners and would only exacerbate existing problems. I encourage the City Council not to approve a zoning change to the Ironwood property and preserve this established recreation area within the city limits.
Naturalist doing great work for city
I would like to publicly and personally thank City Manager Nelson Fialho for the outstanding programs the city sponsors with naturalist Eric Nicholas. My twins, Matt and Jack, first met Eric when they were 4 and have enrolled in every program Eric presented over the last four years.
Their favorites involve hikes, dirt, bugs, flora and fauna. Most recently they made ink out of oak galls during their three days of adventure at the Alviso Adobe and Ridge hiking. Eric instructs the students on not just the natural world around them but how to be safe outdoors, to keep the environment safe and to get along with each other and wildlife. The boys were not even aware they were learning about the history of Pleasanton while milking cows.
The astronomy programs are fabulous for adults as well as the children with inside discussion and instruction first and then an opportunity for kids of all ages to use the telescopes. Thank you again for the wealth and variety of programs in the Pleasanton Activity Guide and for the outstanding programs lead by our naturalist Eric Nicholas. Eric is a city treasure.
Lynn M. Martin, CPA
Fewer guns equals less gun violence
Gun-owner groups (the NRA, et al.) constantly remind us of the numerous laws already in effect which, if enforced, would solve the problems associated with gun use by criminals, the mentally ill and citizens with poor impulse control.
I have a suspicion, though no objective evidence, that members of these groups are likely also enthusiastic supporters of politicians who object to any increase in taxes with which to pay for enhanced enforcement of existing laws.
I hear no one from the gun lobby clamoring for increased police resources in Oakland, for example, where a 20 percent decrease in the police force has contributed to the current state of warfare between well-armed groups of citizens with poor impulse control.
Until we commit to effectively enforcing existing laws by taxing ourselves appropriately, I submit the most cost-effective means of decreasing gun violence is to get rid of the guns.
Hold owners responsible for gun use
I recently read an article in which a proposal to track ammunition sales might help our "out-of-control" gun situation. This, plus a ban on all assault weapons, makes sense. I would like to make another proposal, but I will share a short story to add credence.
My husband and I traveled to Australia. At the onset of our journey, our son loaned the car we provided him to drive to a friend. His friend was pulled over for a violation. He had a suspended driver's license. The car was impounded. Since it was registered to us, my son could not retrieve it from impound. On our return we opened our mail and retrieved our phone messages, deciphering the situation. We went to the police department to pay the fine. We were told that since our car was driven by someone without a license we were held fully responsible.
They explained that it is our responsibility to be aware of our vehicle use. An additional fine can be added and my DMV record would be tainted by this for up to three years. The initial cost to us was $2,500. Residual expenses (increased car insurance premiums) could follow. Had the car been used in a crime or been involved in an accident, things would have been disastrous.
If gun ownership were handled in the same way, it would be the owner's responsibility to know of the whereabouts of the weapon at ALL times and the owner held fully responsible for its use. Take the time to thoroughly investigate a gun purchase request at the purchaser's expense. Hold the owner fully accountable for its use. This will help establish a more responsible gun owner who will report a lost or stolen weapon immediately, leading police to investigate promptly. Makes sense to me.