Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

February 12, 2014

Feb. 12, 2014: Letters to the editor

Kokomo Tribune

---- — Pence isn’t listening to what’s being said

We elect our government leaders to lead us in the common good of our communities. Sometimes these leaders have to make unpopular choices and we accept that, having trusted in them with the confidence they would do their best for us. But on the other hand, if everybody tells you you’re sick, you better go lay down.

Mike Pence, the former conservative radio show host and current governor of this great Hoosier Heartland, jumped at the chance to make Indiana communities more efficient by reducing funding for public schools, law enforcement and libraries, just to name a few amenities. The aforesaid communities are naturally outraged.

Last week a coalition of bipartisan mayors drove to Indianapolis through the snow from the far reaches of the great Hoosier Heartland to stage an intervention in the governor’s office. Their goal was to wave off this ridiculous, chief executive inspired abolishment of the business personal property tax. While lawmakers ignore business leaders and educational institutions from around the state and grapple with the problem of defining marriage on a stone in front of the capital, they are actually giving consideration to the governor’s idea. A plan that will cost local governments $1 billion.

While Kokomo and Howard County churned out balance sheets in the black this year, many Hoosier communities are drowning in red ink. Locally, Taylor Schools’ new superintendent is faced with making drastic funding cuts and the Peru Schools already have eliminated bus service for many of their students. Reportedly independent reports say elimination of the business personal property tax will close library facilities, eliminate public transportation systems, create substantial manpower shortages in police departments and take school buses off the streets. The 2008 property tax caps, the reportedly independent reports say, already have cut Indiana communities to the bone.

Last week our mayors walked out of the governor’s office unconvinced by his promise of “no undue harm,” whatever that’s supposed to mean. Maybe you should lay down, governor, you don’t look well.

Tom Kelley


‘Business’ of churchis to reflect love

Recently, I was at a local church that was hosting a blood drive. I heard one of the donors make a comment that the church “was nothing but a business.”

I agree, the church is in the business of paying its bills so that blood drives can be held there free of charge to the American Red Cross. It is in the business of giving away food and clothing to more than 120 families every month. It is also in the business of offering marriage retreats with the hope of building strong marriages in our community and bringing down the high divorce rate we currently have.

Another business the church is in is to have a memory garden and cemetery for couples who lose an infant to miscarriage or stillbirth. These couples with nurseries ready suddenly find themselves in need of a burial plot.

I could go on and on, covering many more aspects of the “business,” but I won’t. Much of this business is done by volunteers whose only reward is knowing they are acting as the hands and feet of Jesus and hoping their lives will reflect the love of Christ to Kokomo and the surrounding area. I for one am very happy to be a part of this business.

My prayer is every person in this community will visit one of these “businesses” and make it a part of their lives every week.

Jan Stieglitz