click to enlarge Sharon and Gene Weiser, Springfield ballroom stars.
Sharon and Gene Weiser, Springfield ballroom stars.

What a thrill to see the article “Dancing without the stars” by Julie Cellini [May 6]. My wife and I were also honored to have been included in this story. Sharon and I have been fortunate to work with and under instructors Pat Lytakker and Kim Beachy. On behalf of all dancers and instructors, thank you, Illinois Times, for a delightful story and outlook on the social dancing opportunities in central Illinois.

Gene and Sharon Weiser

In his May 6 Guestwork, David Kraft takes another shot at nuclear power by protesting an effort to repeal an outdated statute that has been pretty much irrelevant since it was enacted 23 years ago. Expansion of nuclear power in Illinois has been stymied by economics, not the lack of waste disposal capacity. The situation is the same in all the other states, not just those with a so-called “construction moratorium.”

Kraft also contends that the current proposal sabotages any effort to expand renewable energy in Illinois. While renewable energy projects could produce plenty of jobs here in Illinois, they won’t. The reason is that there seem to be just as many environmental groups opposed to wind power as there are opposed to nuclear power. In addition, the anti-nukes don’t seem to want to do anything positive in support of renewable energy sources. Wind power has gotten a cool reception in Sangamon County, but we don’t see Mr. Kraft traveling down to New Berlin to support it, do we?

What are the alternatives in Illinois? Why coal, of course. Illinois gets about 48 percent of its electricity from coal, and that figure will probably rise before renewables take over. Considering the recent horrible coal mining disaster in West Virginia, you’d think Mr. Kraft would be a bit more circumspect about using the phrase “deadly side effects” with respect to nuclear.

The timing of Mr. Kraft’s column really isn’t about HB4875, which has been languishing in the Rules Committee since January. No, it’s probably more about the imploding re-election campaign of Harry Reid. The senator from Nevada has been just about the only thing standing between nuclear power plants and a safe disposal facility for high-level waste at Yucca Mountain. But now there’s a problem. Recent polls show that just about any candidate the Nevada Republicans run would beat Sen. Reid. At this point, they could probably fly in Alan Keyes to beat Reid. That’s the real worry for the anti-nukes, not some obsolete Illinois statute.

Rich Allen

While I understand the cost cutting measures and getting away from enriching Bill Cellini, yes I do think the state contributes to sprawl if they are relocating away from downtown [see “State shuffling agency offices,” May 6]. Our open spaces, wild lands and the soil we grow things from cannot and should not be destroyed as organizations and businesses take the easy way out instead of taking on the task of intelligent long term planning that preserves and uses what is already there.

Anne Logue

I appreciated Don Moss’ letter to the editor about litterbugs [May 6]. It needed to be said. My mom always told me not to litter and I carried that with me all my life. It makes me mad when I see people throw cigarettes and junk paper out of their car windows.

Obviously these people are rude and don’t care one bit about the earth. How hard is it to get a plastic bag to keep in your car for trash? There are trash cans everywhere and it’s just lazy not to use them. Another huge issue that needs to be addressed is illegal garbage dumping. If Illinois Times could publish it without getting in trouble, I would tell you how I really feel about people who dump large bags of trash on the side of the road. People who do this are cheap, lazy, pathetic, slobs.

Jessica Blackburn

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