April 20, 2013

Letters to the editor: Want prosperity? Back tourism

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Keeping people like this coming is what drives so much in Maine.

2011 staff file photo

In making more people eligible for Medicaid over the past two decades, Maine has secured significant federal funding -- dollars that other states did not receive.

Trish Riley

Brunswick

There's just no reason for women to go backward

To some female legislators of the Maine House and Senate: How could you be a "right-to-work" supporter when the only place in the work force that a woman gets equal pay for equal work is in a union shop in this country and state?

Right-to-work = backward. Ladies, unions have been there for you since the beginning of unions. Time to be there for the unions. We as a people can't get to a place that, no matter who you are, you are treated equally. Even in the United States, women are treated as less valuable, except when they are in a union. Come on, ladies.

Paul Paquette

Brunswick

Objections to oil from tar sands based on evidence

Those in opposition to tar sands oil have received harsh criticism as of late.

State Sen. Roland Collins recently wrote ("Oil sands should be part of energy mix," April 7) that "the people of Maine deserve a fact-based debate on the real issues rather than scare tactics that consistently ignore findings from credible sources."

In response, I would like to remind the public that tar sands oil is by no means safe for our state and in fact, poses a very serious threat.

Unfortunately, both Michigan and Arkansas have served as our fact-checkers for the tar sands debate.

Given that families were still being forced to evacuate their homes almost two weeks after the Arkansas spill, I feel that it is both insensitive and illogical to suggest that there is any redeeming incentive for the transportation of tar sands.

In addition to being a nightmare for Arkansas residents, the spill gives us glimpse of the very real consequences we should anticipate should tar sands transport be allowed through our state.

Similar to the project contemplated for Maine, the Arkansas pipeline was very old and repurposed to accommodate Canadian tar sands oil.

Regardless of the state-of-the-art equipment used to incrementally inspect the pipe, it inevitably burst.

We need to learn from the disasters in Mayflower, Ark., and Michigan's Kalamazoo River and not repeat the same process and hope for different results.

For the sake of our health, public safety and the environment, U.S. Sens. Angus King and Susan Collins should demand that President Obama and the State Department require a thorough environmental review of any project that would carry tar sands anywhere near Sebago Lake and Casco Bay.

Maine has nothing to gain and everything to lose with the reversal of the Portland-to-Montreal pipeline.

Madeline Ray

Portland

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