Late for work? Don’t forget to brush all the snow off your car or truck. And I mean all the snow.

Rep. Jane Knapp, R-Gorham, has introduced a bill (L.D. 283) that could slap you and me with a $500 fine for driving around with snow on our vehicles.

And it doesn’t stop there. A $500 fine? Knapp has also introduced a bill that would slap you and me with a fine for failing to run our vehicle headlights during the daytime (L.D. 246) regardless of weather conditions.

Except of course if you own a hybrid. In Knapp’s bill, all hybrids are exempt from this rule, for no apparent reason.

There was a time when Republicans advocated for “getting government off our backs.” But these days it seems they’re only advocating for more intrusive government.

There is something called government overreach, Rep. Knapp. So don’t fine me for an act of God (i.e. snow) and ask me to be late for work. Don’t fine me for not turning on my headlights on a sunny day.

And more importantly, just don’t touch my truck.

Kyle Bailey


Where should our snow go? No matter, as long as it goes 

I read with interest Staff Writer Kelley Bouchard’s Page 1 article on a snow removal proposal that would let municipalities dump snow anywhere, including waterways.

Some years ago, I worked for a printing company at Main and Water streets in Kennebunk.

After each storm the town would pile up snow on Main Street, and then the front-end loaders would pick it up and dump it over the side of a bridge into the Mousam River below.

What is different now versus then? Not much, really. Rather than using sand, it is so much easier to use road salt, calcium chloride, etc. If the environmentalist types are worried about polluting inland waterways, stop using these chemicals.

By the same token, there doesn’t seem to be much concern about the hazards of acid rain contaminating waterways. What’s the difference? Rain goes right down the drain; snow piles are time-released. So what? It’s all the same, regardless.

The issue of snow removal is of concern to those of us who do not drive and have to rely on our feet or public transportation.

It’s a pretty sad state of affairs when streets and other vehicular thoroughfares are cleared up first and pedestrian rights of way take the back seat. Snow removal should be a matter of public safety.

John W. Coyle III

Weymouth, Mass.

Aid for needy children starts with their parents 

Dean Crocker, president and CEO of the Maine Children’s Alliance, argues in a column that it would be counterproductive to cut spending for children in Maine (“Maine needs to be wary of cutting funds that give kids a start in life,” Feb. 7).

As he states it, “Investing in our children now is the ounce of prevention that will stave off the need for a pound of cure later.”

I would be more sympathetic to Mr. Crocker’s position if he also discussed parental responsibility. For example, it is axiomatic (as least as far as I am concerned) that if a person cannot afford to feed, clothe or house a child, or does not know how to raise a child, he or she should not have children.

Take a look at who can receive child support services in Maine. There is absolutely no mention of whether or not a parent irresponsibly had a child they could not afford to care for, or did not know how to care for.

There is sometimes said to be a right to have children, but such a right should be balanced with a requirement that the parents also be responsible.

William Vaughan

Chebeague Island

Debt keeps piling up, so let’s replace those at fault

All the political talking from the left and the right about what we should do now seems to skim over recognizing the gorilla in the room.

Every day our government is putting us more in debt – $4.7 billion every day. Think of this vast amount of money!

All of us can agree that increasing the national debt by $4.7 billion a day will lead to national ruin.

Every nation in history that piles up more and more debt has ended in economic tragedy.

What can we citizens do to stop this attempt by our politicians to spend us into ruin?

Our only course of action is to vote out of office all the politicians who vote for this massive spending. Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, and Reps. Chellie Pingree and Michael Michaud – our representatives in Washington – all have voted for the irresponsible spending going on day after day.

We must vote these people out of office and replace them with citizens who can use common sense and stop the excessive spending.

We all make spending decisions every day – we all spend with an eye to what we can afford. This concept of spending what I can afford is how most of us were raised.

We were taught getting deeper in debt is something to be avoided. The politicians and the elites tell us our economy is complicated and they know what’s best for us.

I believe what’s best for us, our children and grandchildren is to get rid of the current bunch and elect citizens who can understand that increasing our debt $4.7 billion a day is wrong for us and stealing from our children and grandchildren.

Washington, are you listening?

James Waterhouse


Restore prosperity? Easy – make banks hike interest

I have finally found the solution to our sagging economy.

Get the banking institutions to start giving us more interest on the money we have tied up in certificates of deposit, etc., and put a stop to building new banking facilities on every street in town.

Now we can open our wallets and do some shopping with the money we receive in interest. Now how does that sound to you?

I am sick and tired of getting pennies on the money we have saved and worked for years to retire on. Help!

Julie Dionne