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Miles of wall

KENT GUILD

WATERLOO — Regarding the border wall, National Public Radio, respected as the most impartial news source, reports the following: “In November, the government announced a $324 million contract for 32 miles of ‘primary pedestrian replacement wall’ in Arizona.

“A 20-mile border wall replacement project in Santa Teresa, N.M., was announced in April 2018. The cost is reported to be $73.3 million.

“A six-mile ‘levee wall system’ is set for construction in Texas’s Rio Grande Valley beginning in February 2019. It will cost $145 million.

“A 14-mile ‘border wall construction project’ along the border in San Diego was announced in June 2018. The project actually will replace an 8-to-10 foot high scrap metal wall with an 18-to-30 foot bollard-style wall topped off with an anti-climbing plate. The cost will be $147 million.”

Reveal, the Center for Investigative Reporting, states, “Roughly 700 miles of fencing, almost all of it along the U.S.-Mexico border, exists today to help agents patrol the line, along with cameras, sensors and other technology. Border officials say that in many areas, a fence may be pointless because nothing happens there.”

Newsweek reports, “According to the Government Accountability Office, federal and tribal lands make up 632 miles.”

More wall not needed.

Shutdown

JUDITH THOMAS

CEDAR FALLS — Trump wanted a war, but who thought it would be against U.S. citizens? Shutting down the government is a disgusting move against federal workers and programs.

Consequences of Trump’s “border wall” impulsivity:

  • 380,000 federal workers furloughed — NASA, State Department, National Park Service, Transportation Department, HUD and IRS. (NYTimes)
  • 420,000 federal employees are unpaid workers — FBI, ATF, DEA, CBP (border workers), Coast Guard, EPA, FDA and Department of Homeland Security. (NYTimes)
  • 800,000 total federal workers cannot pay bills beginning Jan. 11.
  • 38 million low-income adults and children will not have food stamps. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs (SNAP) requires approval every January to continue services. (Washington Post)
  • $140 billion tax refunds will be frozen without IRS staff. (NPR)
  • FDA approvals for clinical trials are on hold — life and death matters. (CNN).
  • $400,000 per day is lost to National Park Services ($8 million total to date) with no trash maintenance. (NPR)

The economic and emotional impact of a rash decision is holding Americans hostage. Trump stated, “If we have to stay out for a very long period of time, we’re going to do that.” Really?

Re-open our government and stop unnecessary chaos!

Naming rights

JIM LIND

WATERLOO — Now that the naming games have begun at the Black Hawk County Courthhouse, I expect that every naming sign includes the names of the payers.

That is, taxpayers.

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