Reader's letters, April 5

Apr 04, 2013

Say no to capital projects plan

To the editor:

We are at a disadvantage of fair balanced reporting. The Mountaineer has for years tired to influence Maggie politics by imposing the editor’s point of view, written by Vicki Hyatt.

Hyatt’s opinion has been voiced by endorsing candidates and posting articles similar to “Maggie should be a team player.”

It should not be the responsibility of accommodation owners to make capital improvements to county facilities. Mayor DeSimone did not have Maggie’s best interest at heart, with a majority of accommodation owners who collect 55+ percent occupancy tax for the entire county opposed to the increase in some way. DeSimone and Alderman Price voted in favor of the tax hike.

DeSimone undermined their intelligence by holding up the proposed guidelines and stated, “What’s on this paper does not matter!” That paper was your bargaining tool.

Bring Maggie money or no deal. Thumbs up to Alderman Matthews and Wight for not voting in favor of the tax that was thrown together with no marketing/impact studies, or guarantee money would come back to Maggie.

DeSimone has been behind the scenes dealing for what? The TDA to have more money to waste a million a year? Makes no sense to fight for more representation on the board if Maggie has no input on who is picked.

Maggie could have used the $248,000 they collect per year to update their appearance.

Taxpayers beware if they add ballfields in Canton or redo Haywood County fairgrounds, there is a chance this money will not be enough. Commissioners should stop listening to the TDA director. She also needs some direction. She has stated frequently Maggie’s occupancy numbers are declining. That’s not just bad for Maggie that’s bad for the entire county.

Thousands of travelers pass trough Maggie to visit Wheels Through Time, which will be featured on many well known TV shows, Ghost Town, access the Parkway, Cherokee, or Gatlinburg.

If Maggie can’t make much needed improvements to appeal to travelers they will go over the mountain and stay in another county. That’s not just a loss for Maggie but the entire county.

Kyle Edwards

Maggie Valley

Editor’s note: The Maggie Board of Alderman voted 3-1 to support the 2 percent tax hike, with Matthews’ support.

A solution to gridlock

To the editor:

One of the biggest problems we have in America today is the size and complexity of our tax code. There is a way to ensure instant bipartisan agreement on fixing this problem

On April 15, all members of Congress should be required to bring to their desk in their respective chambers all of their personal records and require them to prepare their own tax return by midnight and turn them in to an IRS agent at the exit door.

That may be too complicated for them so let’s have a table in the front of the room with a copy of the 4,500 page tax code for their reference.

Again too difficult? OK. Let’s provide them with the toll free number for the IRS Help line. Maybe their calls would be answered (only 17 percent of the calls to that number are ever answered.)

I’m sure that on April 16, we will have overwhelming bi-partisan support for tax reform and simplification.

Bruce Gardner



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Comments on courthouse trees

Congratulations, the nicest piece of history in the county, the old courthouse, now looks bereft and ugly without any trees.

The idea that the trees were dangerous is ridiculous. Another fine example of how county/city officials blithely waste taxpayer money. Now they want to spend yet more money on new landscaping.

Why don’t we just pour concrete over the grassy areas and be done with it. Haywood County— the ugliest place in WNC.

John Buckley


Folks, as a native of Haywood County now living in other parts, I have watched the courthouse tree drama play out until the courthouse lawn is now treeless.

As a youngster, I have fond memories of coming to town on Saturdays to get whatever we didn’t grow. Sometimes we would picnic on the courthouse lawn and then watch court if there were any trials scheduled.

Now I look at the picture in The Mountaineer, and I see a building that resembles a prison on a hill. These were not the same trees that were there when I was a youngster but there were always trees on the courthouse lawn.

I know the trees needed to come down but they will be missed. I wonder if more will be planted?

Charlie Harrell


Fifth-grader’s unique birthday

This amazing young lady is my great niece. When I inquired of her mom what she needed or wanted for her birthday, she replied nothing. She wants us to give money instead, for the heating fund at her school.

I thought I heard her incorrectly, and asked her to repeat what she just said. I couldn’t believe that someone so young would have such thoughtfulness of others and not of her own wants, afterall it was for her birthday.

At her age, I could think of lots of things I would like to have had for my birthday, none of which involved giving to someone else instead.

I applaud my niece, Joanna, for raising her daughter to be considerate of those in need, and for my great niece Cayli, I couldn’t be more proud. She may be tiny and quiet, but great things come in small packages.

Tonya McGaha


This young lady’s parents should be so proud of her.  I am glad to live in a community with young people like Cayli.  Whatever she plans to do with her life, with an attitude like that, she will be a huge success.

Janet Presson