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Letters to the Editor, Oct. 16

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Psst! Sonoma PD!

EDITOR: Several months ago after two close calls crossing Broadway at Andrieux, I requested (on the proper form) a large sign and blinking yellow light – like the one at Fifth Street West by Safeway.

I pointed out that a lot of cars either don’t see the little lights in the street or they ignore them. I was informed by the police department that it was not needed. After the incident on Friday, Oct. 21 at 5 p.m.: I repeat! We need the same system as Fifth Street West at Broadway and Andrieux, and maybe other locations. We are talking human lives vs. how many dollars. Are you listening Sonoma PD?!

Robert Sherwood

Sonoma

Nita Rothschild a ‘bright light’

EDITOR: Like many of Nita Rothschild’s friends, I am very distressed and saddened by how she was portrayed at the trial of Steven Rothschild (“Blame Shifted to Juanita Rothschild in Sonoma Valley Murder Trial,” Aug. 24). I had known Nita Rothschild since 1984, and we were very, very close friends. The Nita I knew throughout those years was kind, caring and always concerned about other people’s feelings. She was also intelligent, funny and an engaging person to spend time with.

Nita’s career was unique for a woman of her time. She excelled in math in high school and college, when math wasn’t what a woman was supposed to enjoy or be good at. At CSAA, Nita earned her way from computer programmer to IT team leader and then senior manager. She took the time to get to know each individual who worked for her, as if they were a dear friend. She learned the details of their personal lives, their dreams, and their hopes for the future. She was a mentor for many of them - it was important to her to help other people succeed.

For her friends, Nita was always attentive to what was most important in their lives. She never forgot a birthday or neglected to ask how a particular challenge was working out.

Nita volunteered in the community, was compassionate when she saw suffering, and was truly interested in what was happening in the lives of those around her. When she lived in Reno, she volunteered for an organization that took pets into hospitals to cheer up patients. She also became a Big Sister to a young woman who needed a solid role model, and she made that relationship a priority for the rest of her life. In Sonoma, Nita volunteered at Pets Lifeline, where she helped socialize cats that weren’t used to humans, so they could be adopted.

Nita was a warm, thoughtful, generous and kind person, as well as an inspiration to those of us who were fortunate enough to know her. She was a bright light in the world, and she is missed by many, many people.

Carolyn Kohler

Mill Valley

Alternate water district endorsements

EDITOR: Regarding the Sonoma Index-Tribune – Jason Walsh – endorsement of Jon Foreman and Mark Heneveld for the Valley of the Moon Water District Board of Directors.

The purpose of a board of directors is to serve as a governing body. Not as a rubber stamp.

Since I’ve moved to Sonoma it has gradually become apparent that the VOMWD requires another board member (or two) who are more skeptical in regards to the edicts of its executive director, Dan Muelrath.

When Jason Walsh decided to endorse Messrs. Foreman and Heneveld, I wonder if he did so after looking at the District’s financial statements? Had he done so he would have noted that both staff and executive compensation have grown at a rate which dwarfs both Sonoma city and county employees. Was there dialogue at the Board level which would have justified these increases? If so that dialogue and justification was never shared with the ratepayers of the district.

The mandated backflow installations at Creekside, Temelec and Chanterelle was essentially an unnecessary and unjustified tax of over a million dollars on the retirees who reside within those communities.

The state had decades ago issued a common sense waiver as the well water which serves these residential communities was/is as drinkable as the water provided by VOMWD. The irrigation pipes within these communities are/were non-pressurized making a cross connection highly unlikely and/or impossible.

Now these communities are literally blanketed with unsightly, unnecessary tributes to a VOM boondoggle and a board unwilling to challenge the edicts and whims of its executive director.

The water district held a board meeting as it was railroading the backflow edict and a lone board member Ron Prushko asked appropriately skeptical questions of the executive.

Perhaps the members of the board, had they debated this thoroughly, would have come to a similar conclusion. Perhaps they would have changed their mind about the backflow devices? We will never know because the behaviors exhibited at that meeting were not worthy of an organization serving 25,000 ratepayers or the million dollar expense which was being forced upon the ratepayers under the threat of having water service discontinued.

For the sake of the community, and the sake of the VOTMWD I would hope that the Sonoma newspaper and its editor Mr. Walsh would help ensure that the boards of our local organizations are staffed with appropriately skeptical board members, who conduct themselves professionally in open meetings. My endorsement is for Steve Rogers and Dale Ingraham.

Glenn Rapp

Creekside