D.C. deserves statehood
In response to Mr. Charles Robert’s hyperbolic letter to the editor rejecting statehood for the District of Columbia: I submit that he left out the fact that over 800,000 people live in D.C., and don’t have any representation at all.
Any other city in the U.S. with that amount of people has state representation, D.C. stands alone in their unique position. Again, there are at least two entire states that have their own representatives with the same population or less than Washington, D.C.
Both D.C. and Puerto Rico deserve statehood. I’m positive the good people who work and live in D.C., especially the law enforcement community, would appreciate representation to their concerns. It’s not like theirs are any different from anyone else’s.
This is what democracy looks like: Fair representation. Let the cards fall where they may as to who the people vote in to represent them!
Kudos to UNM-Valencia
You may have been among Valencia County residents who voted “yes” on bond funding for improvements to our UNM-Valencia campus.
Historically in New Mexico, voters have overwhelmingly supported these GO (general obligation) improvement bonds. It’s important to note that supporting higher education, through bond funding, did not raise your taxes.
But where does that funding go? I was happy to learn that at the Valencia campus, bond funding was used to reduce energy use and to install rooftop solar. The improvements will save tens of thousands of dollars that would otherwise have been spent on utility bills.
Those savings can now be directed toward classroom improvements and other student needs.
Over its 40-year history, the UNM-Valencia campus has offered courses in solar energy and energy conservation.
As a prime example of “walking the talk”, the campus recently added solar (PV solar) to almost all of the large buildings. Rick Goshorn, the campus’ chief financial officer, spearheaded these rooftop solar projects.
The PV solar system is designed to supply more than 60 percent of the electrical energy the campus consumes.
In dollars, the rooftop solar savings alone amount to a whopping $180,000 per year.
Additional savings come from reducing energy consumption, for example, changing the outdoor lighting to LEDs will save $18,000 per year.
Having taught solar and energy conservation courses for years, I am glad to see the campus continue to move toward a sustainable future, reducing greenhouse gases and reducing recurring utility expenses — savings now being applied directly toward student needs.