The Edmond Sun

Letters to the Editor

March 4, 2013

Bond debt not an unpardonable sin

EDMOND — To the Editor:

Is Oklahoma bond indebtedness for Oklahoma infrastructure an unpardonable sin? No! Rep. Jason Murphey wrote a good op ed dealing with what he bemoans as oppressive state bond debt. He calculates each Oklahoman owes $649 in state debt. He and the rest of the ultra-fiscal conservatives can’t bring themselves to support bonds to pay for the state Capitol repairs, building a medical examiner’s office or other legitimate capital expenditures. So using his logic I decided to apply that thinking to my personal and business life.

The far right loves to say government should be run like a business. So in my business 20 years ago I needed an office building. My business partner and I bought and renovated a building for around $400,000. Should we have waited and saved for 15 or 20 years until we could pay cash? Had we waited we would have been paying rent to a landlord instead of accumulating money to build our building. We decided it was better to borrow, build and occupy our own building from 1993 to the present. And now we owe nothing on our building, having occupied it in a well-maintained condition for 20 years. Oh yes, had we waited 15 or 20 years to pay cash for the building it would cost us closer to $650,000 instead of the $400,000  we paid, plus interest. Pay me now or pay me later.

And then I thought of the right wings’ other catch phrase. We should run government like our family budget. I do not disagree. In 1983 I decided to build a home for my family. I did not have the $200,000 or so in the bank, so I made an informed financial decision to take out a mortgage. I paid it off over 15 years and my children got to grow up in the home. Had I waited to build the house for 15 years the cost would have been $375,000-$425,000. Pay me now or pay me later.

Interest rates are at an all-time low and they are even better for government bonds. It is asinine not to take advantage of this interest climate and the good financial state of Oklahoma. We should issue debt to take care of the major state needs.

Oh yes, as far as the $659 debt per person currently owed by each Oklahoman, I put that in perspective with my business and personal life. When my building was financed for $400,000, I individually owed $200,000 of the debt and my business partner owed $200,000 of the debt for 15 years. The $659 I owe the government on legitimate debt pales in comparison to our business debt. But the decision to borrow to build the office building was wise and time has proved that. And as for my home, there were four of us living there. Two were children, but we each, I suppose, could be attributed $50,000 a piece of the $200,000 home loan. Again, $659 per person is pretty insignificant in the overall scheme of things. I am happy I made an informed financial decision, borrowed money and built the home my children grew-up in and still call home.

None of us want to run the state government like Washington, D.C., but there is a time to get real and recognize that debt wisely issued is not an unpardonable sin.

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Letters to the Editor
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    To the Editor:
    The Oklahoma Legislature has once again given its blessing to texting and driving. By not passing one of the many bills filed this year that would have made the practice illegal, the Legislature is in effect saying, “Want to text and drive in Oklahoma? No problem.”
    Although lawmakers have two more months left in the current session, texting ban bills have been given their last rites.

    April 4, 2014

  • LETTER: Spiking the Electoral College

    To the Editor:
    In the presidential election of 1788, Washington won all the electoral votes. Those electors were chosen by less than 1.3 percent of the population. The vote was so small because only white males who owned land could vote and in four states the electors were chosen by the legislators.

    February 21, 2014

  • UCO students opposing HB 2100

    Feb. 11, 2014
    To The Editor:

    We, the undersigned, are students or former students at the University of Central Oklahoma. We are writing to express our displeasure and opposition to a bill that may soon be debated in the senate: HB 2100.
    Pharmacists are aggressively lobbying behind closed doors for 2100’s passage. If they succeed, they will expand their profits as their friendly pharmacy board bureaucrats will have significant leverage over pharmacy benefit managers. If the bill passes, the bureaucrats will possess the power to increase fees and leverage their power into increased profit margins for pharmacies. Why else would pharmacist legislators be authoring the bills?

    February 14, 2014

  • Stop beating up on Obamacare

    To the Editor:
    I originally was planning to respond to Brandon Dutcher’s elitist, anti-public preschool article, especially since he knows people with money have been taking their children to pre-school in Edmond since 1963. But, since Edmond now has (a number of) public pre-schools I figured most people would ignore his editorial.

    December 13, 2013

  • LETTER: Student urges leaders to not wait on entitlement reform

    To the Editor:
    I am 28 years old and will only be just older than 40 by the time Medicare and Social Security programs are projected to fail. This is very concerning for young people like myself who are paying into this system and likely will not see any benefits from it. I 100 percent agree that some serious reform is needed to strengthen these programs. I think it is also important for lawmakers to help create laws that protect the privately insured from insurance companies dropping or disqualifying people from coverage. I believe this would help to keep many who can afford private health care from having to rely on Medicare and Social Security funds.

    December 6, 2013

  • LETTER: Volunteers make Thanksgiving dinner successful

    To the Editor:
    How do you thank 711 people for helping you? On Thanksgiving Day my belief in the goodness of man and that Edmond has the most giving citizens was reinforced.
    Starting on the Saturday before that day, I met the first ones as they worked diligently to clean equipment in preparation for cooking the Edmond Community Thanksgiving Dinner. More people came to three sites on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to cook and carve.

    December 5, 2013

  • LETTER: Longtime resident disappointed in city

    To the Editor:
    I have been a longtime resident of Trails South and we have been asking the City of Edmond for many, many years for a traffic light at the corner of Countrywood and Santa Fe. As the city’s population increases, the danger increases. We have had many accidents and finally a fatality at this dangerous intersection.

    November 26, 2013

  • City’s traffic solutions disappoint resident

    To the Editor:
    I am totally disappointed with the city officials in Edmond. I live in an addition where it is difficult and extremely dangerous to exit or enter the neighborhood.
    We have had numerous traffic accidents and a fatality last month; yet the city continues to say “you do not meet the criteria for a traffic light.”

    November 22, 2013

  • LETTER: School funding vs. corporate incentives

    To the Editor:
    Lately, our state has been in the news regarding cuts in funding for schools. By some reports, funding per pupil has been reduced more than 20 percent between fiscal years 2008 and 2013. I am sure there is room for debate on the actual reduction, but it certainly seems that school funding is not a priority for our elected officials.

    November 12, 2013

  • LETTER: Terry family thanks community, police for outpouring of support

    To the Editor:
    A month ago, we lost our beloved husband, father, son, brother and uncle, Matt Terry, too soon and without warning. Matt’s passing laid our family low and we were lost.
    But not for long. The outpouring of love and support from our family and friends, our community, was overwhelming and immediate. Countless people reached out to us with shoulders to cry on, words of faith and encouragement, home cooked meals, heartfelt prayers, financial support, a bike rally, lawn care, flowers planted, even home repairs and simple chores like shopping and carpooling. Support came from all parts of our lives — family, friends and colleagues — as well as from folks we have not yet had the pleasure to meet. So many strangers, now dear to us, stopped and stood by their cars paying their respects as Matt passed from this life to the next. We are so grateful for such overwhelming grace and generosity.

    November 1, 2013