Kudos to the city of Merriam Maintenance Department. You can count on our streets in bad weather to be cleaned in a timely manor.
Our parks are many, and they are well maintained throughout the year. In our tough economy Merriam officials have managed to keep the bulky pick up twice a year.
I always look forward to the beautiful hanging baskets through downtown Merriam every spring and summer.
Thank you city of Merriam Maintenance Department for taking care of your residents.
Merriam Former Lenexa mayor
We bid a late but most earnest farewell to former Lenexa mayor and civic leader Gunnard A. Nelson Jr. I knew him as Gunny when we both served on the Lenexa City Council some years back.
He was an attorney who never stopped standing up for the working person. The 87th Street bridge, City Hall and Community Center along with Sar Ko Par Park and new police station are all his works come true.
He saw Lenexa as a work in progress and championed annexations so the city would have room to grow. He and Bill Nicks built a parks department second to none — reference our Barbecue Battle as just one of their contributions.
It was not uncommon for him to stop by my home and pick me up to view street maintenance, faulty sidewalks, things that really affect a neighborhood. We would make notes, and he saw that they were addressed.
Lenexa often names streets for former mayors but not for him. For Gunnard, being an honest man was the highest compliment you could give him.
I was privileged to serve with him. We need more like him.
He was a true Lincoln lawyer.
Lenexa Streetcar dreams
I am a resident of Roeland Park/Mission. I will digress long enough to explain that we live on a cul-de-sac in Roeland Park, where the rest of our street and housing development are in Mission.
Reading the batch of articles heralding the future progress in the metropolitan area for 2014 is depressing. Roeland Park residents look forward to increasing taxes with the loss of Wal-Mart.
Someone had the brilliant idea to construct another bank on one of our few prime city sites — a great revenue source. Mission can't populate the Gateway Project even with Ikea a couple of miles down Johnson Drive.
Oh, well I guess our cul-de-sac remains in a lose/lose part of town. Maybe the streetcar line will come our way.
Roeland Park Kobach trick
Professor of law and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach is using an obscure trick he learned in law school to abuse American citizens’ right to vote.
Swearing or affirming where or when you were born is technically “hearsay.” Those are facts your parents told you.
It was not from your own personal knowledge, which you were incapable of knowing at the time of your birth. But for centuries the Anglo-American common law recognized the hyper-technical nonsense of applying the “hearsay” objection to birth as archaic and non-sensical.
The law declared the date and place of your birth as a universal “exception” to the hearsay rule. Therefore, your own testimony to your place of birth is an admissible fact in every court in the land, including Kansas.
So, when you register to vote and swear or affirm you were born in the United States, it is a fact now proved and not up to you to overcome the archaic hearsay rule Professor Kobach is trying to impose on U.S. citizens countrywide.
Lloyd Hellman, J.D.
Leawood Herbert column
Danedri Herbert in her Jan. 1 column, “Dining at the public trough?” attempts to perpetuate the view that public workers are overpaid. She takes a new leap by claiming that this is the reason for the widening divide between the “have” and “have-nots.”
Ms Herbert, however, provides no real data to support this view. She falls into the common trap of comparing “apples to oranges.”
I agree private sector earnings have dropped dramatically. However, I believe this is related more to the transfer of good manufacturing job overseas, leaving fewer mid-level jobs and an abundance of service type jobs in its place.
These low-paying service jobs can never be compared equally with jobs done by the public sector, which in reverse has shed mostly blue collar/labor jobs to private contractors, thus leaving a majority of upper-level positions.
For once I’d like to see a journalist do some real research on this topic by comparing salaries between specific private and public sector jobs such as engineers, doctors, researchers along with private CEOs and the comparable public agency administrators.
Judy Sebern Beachy
Leawood Herbert column
Regarding Danedri Herbert's Jan. 1 column, “Dining at public trough?” she is entitled to her opinion but not her own facts. Congress is the body that determines taxes and not anyone who works for the government.
She says federal employees are overpaid, but how many air traffic controllers are in the private sector as well as food safety inspectors, border patrol officers, environmental scientists, etc.? A high degree of education is required for these jobs, before they are hired.
Sixty percent of federal employees have degrees, 40 percent have graduate degrees compared with 29 percent of those in the private sector having degrees. Herbert has no standing to reject University of Wisconsin's Bender and Haywood's conclusion that federal employees are better educated and have more work experience than private sector employees.
Herbert has no idea of what the government does for her or other people. I have been reading Herbert's columns for quite some time.
However, this one topped them all. With each diatribe The Star becomes more like a certain cable show whose sole purpose in being is to bait people with misinformation.
I am a retired federal employee and social worker with a master’s degree.