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The state’s herd

CRAIG HUNDLEY

WATERLOO — About 15 years ago, an Iowa apple farmer was having his trees destroyed by deer. They were on his property, so he shot them. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources went to court and asked the judge to declare all the deer in the state belong to the DNR.

The judge sided with the DNR. The judge gave the state possession of all the deer within Iowa boundaries. OK, if I’m a farmer and my cow gets out and someone hits it, I’m responsible for all damages and liabilities. KWWL just did a story on all the cars in body shops due to hitting the state’s livestock. I think a good lawyer could argue this unattended livestock belongs to the state, and it should be responsible for damages. Maybe they’ll finally do something about the overpopulation of these pests.

Hole in road

AGATHA HUNDLEY

WATERLOO — Why is our street department allowed to dig up a portion of a road and leave it for months on end? Presently, there is a hole that was dug up on Katoski. Granted it has cones around it, but it’s been like that for weeks and possibly months. Now we are starting to have icy roads. What happens when someone hits a patch of ice and slides right into that hole? Those orange safety cones sure won’t do anything to stop their vehicle.

I would imagine dropping a tire into that hole will create a lot of damage to a vehicle. What if it’s an emergency vehicle? Opening a hole of this size into a road and leaving it for months is totally irresponsible.

Huntington, just on this side of the Cedar Falls border, is a nightmare. It’s like driving over a washboard. The eastbound lane is worse than the westbound. It has been in this condition for years! This is a busy road, driven by many of us every day.

Editor’s Note: Jamie Knutson, interim Waterloo city engineer, responds: “Katoski Drive has a storm sewer problem. Waste Management investigated an issue with a hole in the pavement earlier this fall. What was found was that some storm sewer pipe had separated and the ground above it was falling into the gap in the pipe and causing an issue with the road surface. After working with Waste Management it was determined that the storm sewer is deeper than they can safely excavate so Engineering put out a small contract to complete the work. The city then had six weeks of rain in September and early October. After the rain stopped the contractor has been focusing on University Avenue. As soon as they can they will be in to complete the repairs on Katoski Drive.

“As for Huntington Road, the Public Works Department can ‘shave’ down the worst of the bumps. Engineering will look at the condition and see where it would fit into either a reconstruction or overlay in the future.”

Getting jobs

KAREN JOHNSON

WATERLOO — I do not understand the position of many politicians who say we need more jobs in Iowa when I drive up Airline Highway, for example, and see most of the businesses out there have hiring signs up. I drive all around Waterloo and Cedar Falls and see hiring signs up everywhere. It seems to me if an able-bodied person wanted to get out of bed and off the couch, get off the computer games, pass a drug test, go to work and actually do the work, they certainly could.

Then they could also go to Hawkeye Community College to get particular skill training to help them get an even better job. There’s no excuse for living off the system and other people.

Education spending

BERYL RICHARDS

NASHUA — I keep hearing from politicians, mostly on the left, that we need to increase education spending. I am pretty sure educational spending in Iowa has gone up every year. If we aren’t educating students with the money, where is it going? Could we save by getting rid of the multitude of agencies that are around just to deal with that small group of students that won’t or can’t work within the school room requirements. What amount would we save and be able to put toward the students that want to learn if the recalcitrant group were allowed to fail? The structure seems to be built to ensure any child gets out of 12th grade whether they are capable, interested or willing to work.

I would rather save the money for the students who want to learn and get rid of the folks who exist just to support the small group of non-interested students. At some point those students will change and adapt or will fail out and get what they earned.

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