click to enlarge Letters to the editor 3/9/23
On Dec. 13, Springfield Police Department Chief Ken Scarlette swore in 14 new officers in the city council chambers. Thirteen were recent graduates from basic law enforcement training and one was a transfer from the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department.

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A push for diversity just for the sake of diversity never seems to work out ("A push to diversify," March 2). Instead of worrying about the skin color of applicants, hire the best-qualified candidate, regardless of immutable characteristics. Maybe women and minorities don't want these jobs. Maybe part of the problem is that the media keeps telling these communities that these institutions are full of racist, sexist bigots. That could have an effect on applicants. Who would want to go to work somewhere where they think all their coworkers are going to hate them because of their skin color or gender?

If we need diversity to help create change, we need to change the way these institutions are presented to make them more appealing to the groups that are trying to be recruited. Find out exactly why people aren't applying for these jobs and start making them more appealing.

Jason Hoffman



Back in 2014, the city of Springfield had a ballot question for residency and the voters voted in favor of it. The reason for residency is because the pensions that are paid to city employees come from property taxes paid by city residents. That is why residency is so important.

I do not believe residency is a cause for lack of people taking the test, nor the lack of minorities. I think the cause is the "good old boy network" within the fire department. It amazes me how diversity is difficult, but when a father is a fireman the son – or in some instances, sons – automatically get hired. Not being fair may be why testing is down.

Chris Long



Once again, this is a perfect example of government picking winners and losers ("Too big to fail," March 2). Let free enterprise decide that. It is so unfair to other local businesses for this one to be subsidized at taxpayer expense. If the Wyndham would like to have occupancy rates that mirror other local hotels, make the investment in modernization and remodeling and improve the facility.

There are other local businesses who are also severely in arrears on their utility bills with CWLP and there needs to be definition to how far they get carried before being shut off. This avoids the utility getting into the situation where they get backed into a corner and are forced to either negotiate a settlement or lose the principal. These decisions need to be made in the public forum and voted on by the city council.

Terry Young



The supporters of nuclear power plants act like they say "poof" and a nuke magically appears in front of them in a 12-year period ('Battling the green nuclear deal," Feb. 16). Yet in that same time period, the builders have to run all the diesel power equipment to dig a huge pit. Then they have to generate all the greenhouse gases to fill that pit with concrete and steel (all huge greenhouse gas generators) and finally, they have to mine all that radioactive material to fill that concrete and steel pit with fuel rods, which generates even more greenhouse gases. Then you have to finish the plant out with all the control panels necessary – even more greenhouse gases. Up to this point, the nukes produce way more greenhouse gases then the construction of a standard coal-fired plant.

The point being, they better not generate any more gases after that, but they do, if for no other reason than plant operators must drive to work. Nuclear facilities are huge polluters, they just don't want to admit it. The fact that they are "on demand" and that the grid needs that is a fairy tale. What the grid needs is storage, and that is pretty easy to provide, but the power industry makes it sound like that is in the future.

Doug Nicodemus

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