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Editorial Policy: Letters to the Editor may be up to 250 words in length. A handwritten signature (unless emailed), address and telephone number must be included. Letters must be received by no later than Monday at noon. Letters should pertain to a local issue and not be libelous or distasteful. Letters may be edited for content and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Clearwater Progress.

All I Have to Say Print E-mail
Written by Ben Jorgensen, The Clearwater Progress   

Winter ramblings

     The dreaded multiple billing practice once more came to the surface at last week’s Kamiah City Council meeting.

     Business owner Dawn Marie Johnson inquired why she had to pay an additional set of base fees just because she rented out a studio above her eatery The Log Yard.

     She brought up a very salient point: It’s hard to make money in this town.


     The city is not focused on making it easier for businesses to make money. There are nice people serving as councilors, mayor, staff, public works and all of them would like to see business do well here. But as Councilor Dan Millward noted, the city wants to pay its bills. That’s its focus and responsibility. And those bills are vast considering the millions of dollars spent for a waste water plant that was not needed and a water plant that was very much needed.

     The city needs to crank out payments from users every month. So it has opted to use the multiple billing practice as a means to gather the necessary monthly payment.

     It’s an ugly and unfair process that virtually everyone dislikes. It’s also court approved.

     Lynn Sanderson took the city to court over the issue years ago when her business was double billed and the judge basically said the city can charge what it wants to pay its bills.

     That doesn’t mean it’s fair. It just means it is what it is, an unfair practice that makes it extremely hard on small business. The policy further appears to favor some businesses over others because of unequal bill assessments.

     The fairest way to deal with the issue is to base charges off consumption and do away with base rates. That way everyone is on an equal footing and each pays for what they consume. If that means that consumption charges are hiked proportionally to make up what is lost in base rates, so be it.

     This approach would also eliminate the unsavory reality of city officials turning in business owners who are renting property that under the current system qualifies for multiple billing. The whole notion of turning in businesses so they can be assessed additional base rates almost feels retaliatory. I know city officials have a job to do, but there has to be a better system than what we have now.

     I will say that no matter what formula is implemented, someone will still say water is too costly here. That statement goes back to Johnson’s assessment that it is hard to make money here. Or live here. Not enough money and too expensive are the economic catch phrases of the reality that we call Kamiah. It’s an economically poor area, but rich in other areas, like neighborliness.

     As the snow arrived and kept coming and coming and coming the tiny public works department could not keep up with its removal. Believe it or not they have a lot of other tasks to do on a regular basis, not to mention assisting with the ongoing water infrastructure project.

     So the streets became snarly with ice. When things don’t go smoothly patience is often the first virtue to go AWOL. It’s followed by kindness and courtesy.

     A group of residents volunteered to help the city, using their own snowplows and trucks to clear some of the streets during the wee hours. It’s that kind of gracious spirit that Kamiah is rich.

     I appreciate Councilor Mike Bovey’s comment at last week’s meeting, “It’s winter. You got to get used to it.”

     We’ve been spoiled the past decade with less arduous winters and forgotten that we live in snow country. We’ve been reminded of it this year. Learn to graciously adapt and be thankful that we even have paved roads in the first place as well as other services that are so easily taken for granted.

Letters to the Editor Print E-mail

Plowing at cemetery greatly appreciated

     Because this is a normal winter, which most of us due to the past winters have forgotten about, we have had a lot of snow.

     At the Kamiah Cemetery, this has caused us some problems, which have not been realized for some time. Because of a pending burial at the cemetery and due to snow amounts exceeding our ability to remove, we went to Randy Daugherty of the Kamiah Highway District, who then called Chairman Dean Roach and then called Bob Lyons the equipment operator.

     On Friday Bob showed up with the grader and opened roads to the cemetery and made it possible for us to conduct the service.

     It is with the greatest appreciation we thank the Kamiah Highway District and their off-duty employee who plowed the roads through and around the Kamiah Cemetery.

Dave Hasz, chairman

Kamiah Cemetery District

Help available for stuttering

     For many people, ringing in the New Year brings hope and joyful anticipation. But for those who struggle with stuttering, the old fears of speaking and being teased remain the same—year after year. Many of your readers don’t know that help for stuttering is available from so many places. Trusted information on stuttering is available at your local public library. Public schools have speech counselors, and children are entitled to free evaluation and help by law.

     Seek out a Speech-Language Pathologist in your area trained in helping those who stutter. Universities often offer speech clinics. Finally, the Internet can be a wonderful resource on stuttering—with free books, videos, and reference materials. Visit our website as a starting point: www.StutteringHelp.org.

     Make 2017 the year you find the help you and your family need.

Jane Fraser

President, The Stuttering Foundation

Memphis, Tenn.

Why the Electoral College?

     The best explanation as to why our Founders created the Electoral College, and wisely so.

     There are 3,141 counties in the United States. Trump won 3,084 of them. Clinton won 57.

     There are 62 counties in New York State. Trump won 46 of them. Clinton won 16.

     Clinton won the popular vote by approximately 1.5 million votes.

     In the five counties that encompass NYC, (Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Richmond and Queens) Clinton received well over two million more votes than Trump. (Clinton only won four of these counties, Trump won Richmond). Therefore, these five counties alone more than accounted for Clinton winning the popular vote of the entire country.

     These five counties comprise 319 square miles. The United States is comprised of 3,797,000 square miles.

     When you have a country that encompasses almost four million square miles of territory, it would be ludicrous to even suggest that the vote of those that encompass a mere 319 square miles should dictate the outcome of a national election.

     Large, densely populated Democrat cities (NYC, Chicago, and LA, etc.) don’t and shouldn’t speak for the rest of our country.

Betty Alm


The election is over ... and Trump won!

     There was a brief and relatively gentle “Bash” about Obama’s final days as President in Lucky Brandt’s ‘Letter to the Editor’ published last week. I like what Lucky wrote and since this seems to be a continuing local issue, I’ll respond. A disclaimer first, as if I need one! I am only one of very few people in this valley who did not support Trump.

     Lucky’s letter caused me to see a slim opportunity to open up respectful dialogue. Dialogue that just does not sound like an echo chamber reinforcing “Sheep-Like” thinking that’s so prevalent these days.

     History, depending on who has the power to control its judgements, tends to give a more balanced and thoughtful perspective. It does sort out all of the background noise and uncover the twisted lies told in the heat of a campaign or a term in office.

     For example, history tends to clarify whether a candidate or, in this case a president, worked in collusion with a foreign power; whether he or, sometime in the future a she, benefitted financially from holding office; or whether the goals and promises made during the campaign were cruel illusions used to dupe voters!

     So, accepting that history has at least a fighting chance of being an unbiased arbiter of truth…I too would accept its conclusions about either Obama or, soon to be, President Trump.

     It’s a start! Now where to find a local forum for civilized, intelligence dialogue?

Jim May


Snow removal heroes

     Thanks to all the citizens of Kamiah who spent their time, energy, and resources to help clean the snow off the street from the snowstorm. Thank you Chris Wilkins, Jerry Cloninger, Shane Bernard, Jim Wimer and Robert Simmons for bringing in their equipment and working Friday night to clear the downtown area of Kamiah.

     Thanks to citizens like Rodger Walker, Glen Hibbs, John Wilcox, Merle Barnett, and Ted Weeks who went around town with their snow blades helping people clear driveways, sidewalks, and clearing the parking for our local churches.

     There are many more Good Samaritans who were out there helping who I am not aware of their names that I would like to thank also.

Dale Schneider

Kamiah Mayor

Wolf Problems? Print E-mail

The following list of numbers is offered for anyone who experiences problems with wolves. 


Suspected Livestock Predation

Call USDA Wildlife Services, 1-866-487-3297 or contact Justin Mann, local Wildlife Specialist at 208-869-3297. Personnel will be dispatched to investigate.


Frequent Wolf Sightings

Contact the Nez Perce Tribe, Curt Mack at 208-634-1060. They will gather and record information, then provide advice.


Report Sighting of a Wolf

Go to Idaho Dept. of Fish & Game website to fill out a wolf report form: http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/wildlife/wolves/


Health and Human Safety Concerns

A wolf may be killed if life and human safety is at risk. Contact Idaho Fish & Game at 208-799-5010 or call Nez Perce Tribe at 208-634-1061 or 911 Sheriff dispatch. All wolf kills will be investigated.


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