Don’t give illegals licenses – deport them

To the editor:

In response to Tom Ragan’s Sunday article on plans to issue driver’s licenses to illegal immigrants:

The supposed purpose of issuing these “driver privilege cards” is to make the roads safer. But more drivers on our roads will not make the roads safer. And we will have to put up signs in Spanish, as most of these illegals can’t read English.

There’s a very simple solution: If they’re illegal, arrest them and send them home. What part of “illegal” do our so-called leaders not understand?

When I first moved to Las Vegas more than 20 years ago, I remember, there was a produce business that employed illegals. The authorities shut them down without questions and deported all the illegals.

So who decided it’s OK for them to be here now and add to the burden on our entitlement programs? To hell with political correctness.

Then I find out that if I go to Mexico, I can’t get back into the United States without a passport? Something is drastically wrong with this situation and I, for one, am mad as hell. The solution isn’t that difficult, but then the Democrats wouldn’t have all of their Hispanic voters, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid couldn’t buy them off for votes, either.



Marathon inconvenience

To the editor:

I was caught in a series of road closures on Sunday, Dec. 2, that made it impossible to celebrate the 5 p.m. Mass at Prince of Peace Church on East Charleston Boulevard. I tried hard to find a way through the number of detours put in place, but I didn’t make it.

The police, out in great number, really tried to do well managing the job placed upon their shoulders, answering questions and helping the numberless people inconvenienced by what, I later found out, was the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Marathon and Half-Marathon along the Las Vegas Strip. I read the newspaper daily, but I didn’t find anything to alert me in advance of the commotion of Sunday afternoon.

I was driving north on Interstate 15 from Jean after finishing my mid-afternoon Mass at Jean Conservation Camp, and had smooth sailing until I noticed a sign warning of lengthy delays at Charleston. I was unaware of the closures, and for what reason streets were closed.

It would have been better to have had an event of this magnitude in the early morning, as other marathons have been run in our “carnival town.” It was a major inconvenience for many. It was dark, and that added to the confusion and upset of so many. I was very disappointed to have missed my Youth Mass at Prince of Peace.

I believe that residents of Las Vegas tend to be very patient when faced with poor road conditions, and our police were friendly and helpful. Yet it was stressful and took many of us by surprise.

Let’s do it better next time.



Wind power

To the editor:

Quoting Thomas Jefferson in his recent op-ed (“A subsidy that’s blowin’ in the wind,” Dec. 5), Steve Gorham noted that “Truth can stand by itself.” I agree, which is why his submission, with its many misrepresentations, falls particularly flat.

Undermining the main premise of Mr. Gorham’s argument, the wind energy Production Tax Credit is tax relief, not a subsidy. A tax credit simply leaves more money in private hands for investment.

Contrary to the article’s unreferenced statistics, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reports that wind generated nearly 3 percent of total U.S. electricity in 2011 and has accounted for nearly 35 percent of all new capacity added since 2007. In the West, more than 30,000 megawatts of wind generates power in a 15-state service territory, representing approximately $60 billion in capital investment and 65 percent of all the wind built to date in the United States.

Wind development is good for the economy. In Nevada, this year Pattern Energy completed its Spring Valley Project near Ely – 152 megawatts of wind energy that will power the equivalent of 45,000 local homes each year and generate more than $20 million in tax revenue for White Pine County and the state’s Renewable Energy Fund over the next 20 years.

In a time of often volatile markets for fossil fuels, wind power provides long-term stability by allowing utilities to lock in prices for 20 to 30 years. In fact, a May 2012 report from Synapse Energy Economics found that wind power can save Midwestern consumers between $65 and $200 per year.

Although wind is intermittent, integrating large amounts of wind power has not affected utility reliability. Last year, wind reliably provided around 20 percent of the electricity in Iowa and South Dakota. Xcel Energy’s utility in Colorado has reliably obtained more than 55 percent of its electricity from wind on some occasions. All of this has taken place without reliability problems.

Finally, all U.S. energy industries have benefited from federal incentives. Low-cost energy is a key to a prosperous national economy. However, according to a recent DBL Investors study, the federal commitment to oil and gas was five times greater than the federal commitment to renewables during the first 15 years of each set of incentives.

In short, none of the arguments in Mr. Gorham’s article stand up to close scrutiny. Extending the Production Tax Credit will simply ensure that wind has an equal playing field with other energy sources.



The writer is executive director of the Interwest Energy Alliance, an industry trade association that represents wind and solar companies in the West, including Nevada.

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