Barring an appeal, a federal jury's decision last week exonerating three Homer police officers in the March 1, 2006, Homer Airport shooting brings closure to the seven-year-old case for the city and police department.
Last Saturday, some good policing by an alert Alaska State Trooper got a potentially dangerous device off our streets. After making a routine traffic stop, Wildlife Trooper David Chaffin saw what looked to be a meth lab in a car driven by a 26-year-old man. Troopers seized what they believe is a one-pot or shake-and-bake meth lab. Troopers called in a hazardous material team to safely dispose of it. Good work, troopers.
One of the barriers to some people embracing the flow of natural gas to Homer homes is the cost of replacing appliances, particularly their heating systems. A bill currently making its way through the Alaska House of Representatives would help with some of those concerns.
In a really big way and one small way, the Homer City Council moved forward Monday to address two large problems in our town: expensive energy and violence, especially domestic and sexual violence. If successful, both actions will make Homer a stronger, better community -- a cause to celebrate on this holiday of love, St. Valentine's Day.
A story in this week’s Real Estate and Business section (page 5) gives more fodder as citizens chew on the question: What is the proper role of government?
Homer is host to two unique opportunities this week.
The first is the Kenai Peninsula Economic Development District’s Industry Outlook Forum. The event happens today and Friday at Land’s End Resort.
Thank you, Homer City Council.
Let’s hope this week’s discussion and council vote will preserve the seasonal sales tax exemption on nonprepared food items for good. Canning this perennial discussion is long overdue.
Like others who testified Monday night, we believe a tax on food is regressive.
But more importantly, citizens voted for this tax holiday. Council members need to listen, and they did Monday night.
One of the best things about a new year is the clean slate it represents. It’s a great time to evaluate priorities, reflect on what went right and what didn’t in the year that’s just passed and decide what new strategies may yield better results. It’s also a good time of year to look at what didn’t get checked off that to-do list. By this time in January, many of those who make New Year’s resolutions have already been defeated by their good intentions. But we’re not ready to give up on the hope a new year brings with it. With that in mind, we have two resolutions for us all:
Those two words from the I Ching, the ancient Chinese oracle and book of wisdom, could well be the watchwords of getting natural gas to Homer. As the new year gets underway, it’s critical that city and Enstar officials, as well as community members, continue to persevere in the process.
Respect: (verb) to feel or show honor or esteem for; hold in high regard; to consider or treat with deference or dutiful regard; to show consideration for; to relate to; (noun) a feeling of high regard , honor or esteem; a state of being held in honor or esteem; a deference or dutiful regard; consideration; courteous regard.
— Webster’s New World Dictionary
In memory of Charlotte Bacon, Daniel Barden, Rachel Davino, Olivia Engel, Josephine Gay, Ana M Marquez-Greene, Dylan Hockley, Dawn Hochsprung, Madeline F. Hsu, Catherine V. Hubbard, Chase Kowalski, Jesse Lewis, James Mattioli, Grace McDonnell, Anne Marie Murphy, Emilie Parker, Jack Pinto, Noah Pozner, Caroline Previdi, Jessica Rekos, Avielle Richman, Lauren Rousseau, Mary Sherlach, Victoria Soto, Benjamin Wheeler and Allison N. Wyatt ...
Last week you printed the obituary of my sister Sally Rader. After the memorial was over and all of the out- of-town family and friends had left, I sat down in a quiet moment to reread the obituary and discovered to my dismay that in our grief, we had neglected to include Sally's husband Robin Rader as preceding her in death. Robin's memory is very much alive with our family and he was an important part of that last week of Sally's life as we reminisced and she prepared to join him in the afterlife.
While changes weren’t made this week, it appears that some Homer City Council members are unwilling to let go of their desire to fund a portion of city government with a year-round tax on food.
If public testimony is any indication, however, citizens don’t want the council eliminating that seasonal exemption.
It’s budget time, and Homer City Council
members have a tough job finding the balance between community needs (the bare essentials) and community wants (the things that contribute to our quality of life). Those decisions to cut services or raise more revenue by increasing taxes or user fees or some combination of the two aren’t easy, because they always hurt someone.
Thank you. Two simple words that make our days when we hear them and make others’ days when we use them. Unlike most things in life, we can’t overdo their use.
Thank you. Two simple words that acknowledge that we recognize that what we have or what we accomplish isn’t, for the most part, because we’re a solo act. It’s because we’re part of something bigger.
The group of teens stood before an audience of adults and asked the adults to wave their hands around their head and act silly. The adults looked at one another quizzically, but most did as they were told.
“Feeling awkward?” asked the teens. “Welcome back to adolescence.”
It may seem like the campaigns leading to Tuesday’s General Election have been interminable. But, now, here we are only a few days away from the big vote.
The beautiful thing is no matter who wins or who loses, this country will continue. We may rant for a few days if our particular candidates don’t win, but we know — and we expect — the transition will be seamless. No bloodshed. No curfews. No soldiers in the streets. Just business as usual.
And that’s something to celebrate.
Gaye Wolfe leaves spirit of generosity
Homer is poorer today after the death earlier this week of one of its more endearing residents, but it remains richer for having had Gaye Wolfe in its midst. Ms. Wolfe — she would want to be called Gaye — died Sunday at Alaska Regional Hospital after a short illness.
Lesson learned: The teens who spoke at Thursday night’s meeting at the Mariner Theatre reminded adults of something important: The majority of students at Homer High School are living lives that can make their community proud. Most of them don’t get into trouble. They don’t condone the behavior that’s made headlines. In fact, many of them are involved in programs that are designed to make the world a healthier, safer place to live. Students who spoke were noticeably — and understandably — proud of their school and its accomplishments.
Homer revels in its image as the Cosmic Hamlet by the Sea and its reputation, as the bumper sticker goes, of being a "quaint drinking village with a fishing problem."
Recent incidents, however, paint a somewhat darker picture of this place we call home. Contrary to what many are fond of saying today, it is not all good.