Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor on police grants, candidate endorsements and Iran (June 21, 2019)

Grants for WPD

The efforts of Sen. Jerry Moran, chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee that funds the Department of Justice, have yielded significant grant dollars and positive results for the Wichita Police Department. Earlier this year, the city received a Project Safe Neighborhood grant that has enabled us to begin working on reducing illegal gun violence by tracking shell casings left at shooting scenes. The WPD was just notified that they were also awarded the National Public Safety Partnership grant through the Department of Justice that will allow our staff to receive technical assistance and learn about best practices from their colleagues throughout the U.S. Our brave men and women were also awarded an operational grant to locate and arrest our most violent, wanted offenders.

We are already seeing the good that comes from these funds. Our year-to-date commercial robberies are down, as well as shootings and homicides. The city’s Mission Statement focuses on being an exceptionally well-run city that strives to keep Wichita safe, grows our economy, builds dependable infrastructure and provides conditions for living well. Funding such as this allows our WPD to be even more effective in fulfilling our mission. We are grateful for Sen. Moran’s continued support of the WPD.

Wichita City Council member Becky Tuttle

Amy Lyon

For two years I worked with a group of women to save the pool at McAdams. In the process I came to know city government up close and sometimes quite personal. I am convinced that Wichita needs a new, fresh, people-centered approach to city conservation, operation and development. To make that possible, Wichita needs a new mayor.

I am supporting Amy Lyon, the one woman who filed for the position, not because she is a woman, but because she has experience working with human beings, human beings who are sometimes in crisis: financial, medical or emotional crisis. Wichita has need of such a person to help solve the problems that create stress on the police, schools and medical institutions that then face mission creep.

Amy Lyon believes that local government should be responsible and responsive to its communities and fair and equitable in planning and development. It is time to spend as much time and as many resources on the people of Wichita as we do on developers from outside and tourists passing through. That is where Amy Lyon will put her focus while using tax dollars wisely, and that is why I am supporting her.

Vernette Chance, Wichita

Joseph Shepard

“There’s no reason why we shouldn’t be using our tools and resources to enhance students’ lives.” This quote comes from a video about Wichita State Inspire, a partnership that school board candidate Joseph Shepard made with USD 259 during his time as the student body president of Wichita State University. Using his resources to uplift over 1,000 children at five different USD 259 schools is emblematic of the student-centered approach that Joseph has always exhibited.

I am a proud former Pre-K through 12th grade Wichita Public Schools student who benefited greatly from the district’s immense diversity. This diversity will only be maintained by the type of inclusive, tenacious advocacy that Joseph regularly demonstrates. When I worked as Joseph’s chief of staff at Wichita State, he prioritized introducing a campus food pantry for low-income students, increasing the number of gender neutral restrooms for LGBTQ+ students and promoting religious tolerance in our interfaith prayer space. He attentively listened to constituents and made coalitions out of seemingly disparate groups. The vibrant communities within USD 259 need a school board member who will expand and protect them, and Joseph has always had the skills, courage and compassion to promote educational environments that work for everyone.

Kiah Duggins, Wichita

Iran

After the Gulf of Tonkin and “weapons of mass destruction”, and the track record of the present administration, I am having trouble trusting their investigation of the attacks on the tankers. I am not saying it wasn’t Iran, but, for several reasons, including an excelent distraction from present internal problems, it would be very convenient for the White House to come to that conclusion. And the military/industrial complex always benefits from military action, at the expense of common citizens.

Jim Laney, Wichita

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