Letters to the Editor

‘Toxic’ mix for Sunlight Beach | LETTER TO THE EDITOR

To the editor:

There has been an ongoing conflict over the handling of Diking District 1 “business” for no less than 25 years; actually much longer. The issues raised are not from some “fringe” or “radical” element, and many of us support the investigation into the actions of Diking District 1 commissioners. The Army Corps of Engineers supports the investigation, as is evidenced by its rare and unusual revoking of the 6,000-gallon-per-minute pumping permit. Unless the Corps of Engineers is also a “radical” element.

In 1985, “citizens” of Sunlight Beach attempted to bring accountability and transparency into Diking District 1. Diking

District 1, then as now, was able to frustrate the effort. Diking District 1 confused the issues, denigrated residents, hid Diking District 1 “secrets,” marginalized dissenters, created “us vs. them,” and hid behind the Diking District 1 “screen.”

Diking District 1, past and present, has dismissed residents of Sunlight Beach, the “benefited parties” (those taxed).

The litmus test is in the benefits provided by the pumping.

Benefits of Diking District 1 actions are best determined by asking the “benefited parties.” Did Diking District 1 communicate sufficiently, provide facts and create consensus for community support? Does the Diking District 1’s $400,000 pump benefit the taxpayer? To many of those taxed the answer is a resounding “NO”!

This is the crux of the problem, not if you’re new or old, resident or part-time, physician or farmer, “rich” or “poor.”

Most people want to pay their fair share, for shared benefits; we just didn’t get any. It is that simple. Ignore the rest of the distracting rhetoric.

Importantly, this project is not environmentally responsible. There is no grandfather clause for environmental pollution. Pumping a toxic cocktail (heavy metals, fertilizers, pesticides, human and animal waste, bacteria) into Useless Bay is simply wrong — we all agree on that.

Tom Kraft

Sunlight Beach

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