Letters (November 29, 2017)

HHS leaf-rakers were yard-savers

The most amazing thing happened to us the other day. Students from Hillsboro High School generously gave up their time and energy to save our yard from becoming a giant compost pile.

Whoever came up with the idea deserves an extra turkey! As we are no longer able to do this ourselves, it is an enormous blessing. Even our resident squirrels thank them for uncovering their acorns.

We believe the students, too, are benefited by developing a sense of seeing and meeting the needs of those around them.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Don and Lillian Bookless

Hillsboro

Pipeline leak an omen for county

Last week, the Keystone I pipeline leaked 210,000 gallons of Canadian tar sands crude oil in a rural area of South Dakota. While the pipeline was shut down minutes after the leak was detected, it was over five hours before local authorities were notified.

The Keystone I pipeline was constructed in 2009 and is upstream of the Keystone Cushing Extension pipeline which runs north to south through Marion County, it was constructed in 2010.

There have been five leaks of the pipeline before the large leak last week. The pipeline in South Dakota, like the pipeline in Marion County, is supposed to be “state of the art leak-proof” with a 100-year life.

What will be the consequences of a leak in Marion County, especially if it should occur in the Marion Reservoir watershed or near where it passes under the Cottonwood River?

Remember that in 2006 the Kansas State Legislature gave Trans Canada LLC, the owner of the Keystone pipeline, a 10-year property tax abatement, so not a dime has been collected by Marion County in the seven years the pipeline has been operational.

The tax revenue would have been a source of funds to improve the first responders equipment and personnel to enhance the ability to deal with the inevitable spill events that are sure to occur in the future.

Harry Bennett

Madison, Wisc.