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LETTERS; DON'T SUBSIDIZE DESTRUCTION OF WILDERNESS FOR MORE GOLF.

Golfers are an arrogant lot. They request - no, they insist - that their lives and, indeed, all our lives would be enhanced were there more golf courses. I find it mind-boggling that they can claim hundreds of acres (in the case of the proposed Hill Canyon Course, sensitive, pristine land) that they denude and reconfigure so they can belt little white balls into little holes.

I don't begrudge anyone engaging in what I consider a silly pastime. However, when it entails the destruction of the last remaining environmentally critical corridor between Thousand Oaks and the Santa Rosa Valley, I strongly object.

A golf course can in no way replace the natural beauty and tranquillity offered by Hill Canyon. The loss of natural habitat can never be replaced or be ``reassigned,'' as some course designers claim.

A claim was made by a golf course proponent at the last City Council meeting that there are some 3,500 card-carrying golfers in Thousand Oaks. This comparatively small group, many who likely deplore Big Government expenditures for public welfare and education, nonetheless seem to expect, without embarrassment, their entertainment to be subsidized by the roughly 120,000-or-so nongolfing residents to the tune of about $18 million.

Certainly the city can find a better, more productive and less destructive use for its natural and financial resources.

It would be Pollyanna-ish to expect the City Council to permanently resist the golf lobby. Nonetheless, I would hope that when it does succumb, it situates future golf courses on land that has already been compromised by development - flattened, stripped of its natural vegetation and indigenous wildlife. This would serve to pacify our golfing friends and allow them to stroll about, staring at the grass, the crows and those little white balls.

- Sylvia Lewis Gunning

Thousand Oaks

Taxes go to tantrums

The outrageous conduct of Ventura County Supervisor John Flynn at the April 13 board meeting wasted the valuable time of dozens of private citizens, many of whom had taken time off from work and driven many miles to attend. Flynn masquerades as a grown man, while in truth he acts as a spoiled brat, claiming that in an earlier meeting he didn't get his way, so everyone can suffer. He tried to cover his childishness by lying about other supervisors trading votes and trying to cheat him out of his just due.

Flynn must apologize to Supervisors Judy Mikels and Kathy Long in as public a manner as he cast his calumnious claims. He should then apologize to the people of Ventura County, who pay his $73,000 salary, especially the attendees. The least he can pretend to do in order to earn that amount of money is show up at meetings. Perhaps the people of Oxnard should consider a better representative. One recently retired assemblyman would certainly do a better job.

Perhaps we should also chide Supervisors Frank Schillo and Susan Lacey for not earning their $73,000 salaries. One's well enough for a morning meeting but avoids a night one with many more in attendance. The other makes appointments that interfere with a scheduled meeting. We expect something for our money.

- Hugh M. Flynn

Simi Valley

Library volunteers rule

During National Volunteer Week, ending April 24, the Ventura County Library staff want to thank our 1,300 wonderful volunteers who gave 30,000 hours of their time to the library in 1998.

Last year, our volunteers helped us accomplish important goals. They tutored more than 800 adults to read through our Adult Literacy Program. They assisted more than 8,000 children in the Summer Reading Program, read stories to 4,000 children through Grandparents and Books and volunteer storytimes, and helped 5,800 youths with their homework at our Homework Centers.

Volunteers helped us provide better service to the public by giving us clerical support, processing books, shelving books and selling books in library bookstores.

Volunteers helped us enter the new world of technology with their fund-raising efforts, technical expertise and training of the public on the Internet. Less than 18 months ago, we had no graphical Internet access. Soon we will have 55 public Internet workstations and 12 word processing workstations countywide.

These impressive figures do not even include the countless hours donated by the members of our 10 Friends of the Library groups through book sales, fund raising and advocacy efforts.

We want to recognize all of our volunteers and friends for their generosity. Library volunteers make a tremendous contribution to the lifelong learning needs of the citizens of Ventura County.

- Trish Cavanaugh

Volunteer/community relations coordinator

Ventura County Library

Grant will aid youths

On behalf of the board of directors, executive director and staff of Conejo Youth Employment Services, I extend our thanks to the city of Thousand Oaks for the block grant funds awarded to our agency. The city has supported CYES programs for each of the 31 years that CYES has been in existence, but with so many qualified charities in the community, we do not take your support for granted.

In combination with funding from the private sector and our own agency fund-raisers, the block grant will help CYES continue its mission of providing resources for people ages 14 to 22 who are looking for jobs. CYES provides job listings for more than 5,000 local employers who are willing to give youths a chance. We also provide seminars, counseling, career mentoring and youth-at-risk outreach programs.

CYES specialized in reality- and behavioral-based programs that placed more than 3,500 young people in jobs last year. With your generous help, we will exceed that result this year. Thank you again.

- Jill Lederer

President

Conejo Youth Employment Services

Gallegly's your man

I read with interest the article about the interest in persuading the Navy to allow increased commercial use of Wharf 3 at the Naval Construction Battalion Center at Port Hueneme.

The article might leave the reader with the impression that Congressman Elton Gallegly and I are playing equivalent roles in this process.

Port Hueneme has been represented by Congressman Gallegly in Washington for more than a decade. He has taken the leading role here in Washington to secure opportunities for civilian use of Wharf 3. I admire the hard work and tenacity that Congressman Gallegly has brought to the issue of expanding the civilian use of Port Hueneme consistent with its military mission.

Just as I take the lead in Ventura County issues located in my district, it is natural that Congressman Gallegly takes the lead on Ventura County issues in his district.

- Brad Sherman

Member of Congress,

24th District, California
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Article Type:Letter to the Editor
Date:Apr 26, 1999
Words:1099
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