Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor on energy bills, park upgrades and a voter act (June 29, 2019)

Energy bills

Recently, Kansas Sen. Jerry Moran and Rep. Ron Estes reached across the isle on sensible bipartisan policy that is good for the environment and good for electric consumers. Together with Democratic partners they introduced in both chambers the Financing Our Future Energy Act. This bill levels the playing field for wind and solar developers and investors in several ways — but importantly they can access low-cost financing, currently a benefit in the tax code available exclusively to the fossil fuel industry.

I encourage both members of Congress to look at and support one more sensible bipartisan bill, the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act of 2019. This bill will also help speed the transition to lower priced electricity for industry and families in Kansas. It will spur innovation and likely result in additional solar and wind projects providing drought and flood-proof steady income to farmers and our rural communities. This bill does not grow government or add regulations. It creates jobs, improves regional GDP and is revenue neutral.

Darrel Hart, Wichita

Park upgrades

Thank you to Sedgwick County Park for all of the recent upgrades. I walk there frequently and have been impressed by the improvements.

Around the north lake it is safer for walkers and bicyclists because of increased visibility. Reshaping the bank where the ducks and geese hang out and adding erosion control makes that area much more attractive. There are 10 new handicapped-accessible picnic areas. Between the north playground and picnic shelter there is a new restroom. Near the area where the Renaissance Faire is held there is a bigger and better paved parking lot. The horseshoe pits and bocce ball lanes are now handicapped accessible. The paths near the mid-park covered bridge were redone to eliminate the steep grade leading to the bridge, and a new handicapped accessible water fountain for people and dogs has been added to that spot.

I don’t know if other things are planned for the park, but I appreciate all that has already been done to make it more welcoming and accessible to everyone. Thank you for putting money into a place all kinds of people use and enjoy.

Janis Cox, Wichita

Voter Act

The For the People Act (HR 1/S.949) is possibly the most important piece of recent legislation in the U.S. It was introduced on March 27 in the U.S. Senate after passing in the U.S. House and will give states the power and resources to modernize and secure their election systems. It will improve our elections by making our election system more free, fair and accessible to all eligible citizens. It does this by modernizing voter registration, establishing the public financing of elections through small donor matching funds, ending gerrymandering, and restoring transparency in our government. The For the People Act returns political power to the people.

Currently this legislation is stalled and is in the hands of the Senate Finance Committee. The League of Women Voters-Wichita Metro is calling on our local, state and national leaders to support this most important and transformative bill. Sen. Pat Roberts is on the Senate Finance Committee and needs to hear personally from every Kansas voter that we realize how important this bill is to us and all U.S. citizens. If not passed this session, this should be the most important bill next session and should be the major talking point in future campaign forums. We need to know that our elected officials will represent the people over big interests. Please use your power. Call or write and ask at all election forums.

Pat Reinhold and Laura Thompson, Wichita