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Letter to editor for Nov. 13, 2008

    I am writing this in response to an article in the Nov. 6th issue written by Carol Dunn, concerning Huerfano County’s box elder bug problem.  As I begin I will cite my education on the subject. I am a certified pest control operator, licensed with the Department of Agriculture, in the State of Colorado.  I operate a pest control business under the Bugman Pest Control Services. While I found Ms. Dunn’s article interesting and understand her frustration with our box elder bugs, she is misinformed on the pest.  Box elder bugs lay eggs in the spring on pod bearing box elder trees. The young nymphs are bright red. Dark markings become more apparent on older nymphs and adults.  Box elder bugs feed on box elder tree foliage, tender twigs and winged seed pods. They may also feed on maple or ash trees, and usually forage throughout the summer. Adults feed on low vegetation and seeds on the ground during spring and early summer, and begin mating a couple of weeks after they start feeding. This is when we see them on and in our homes, in that early spring during mating season. Starting in mid July they move to female seed bearing box elder trees where they lay eggs on trunks, branches and leaves. During late summer and fall box elder bugs start to leave the trees from where they were feeding to find protected areas for the winter.  As weather cools, box elder bugs push into cracks and spaces around homes.  In some cases they end up in the interior. They remain active until it becomes cold. While you may see persistent numbers of these bugs, individuals are short lived, only surviving for a few days  up to a week.  They do not eat each other, nor do they bite, spit, or secrete projectile at you.  They do secrete waste much like a fly.  However, if smashed, they can leave a mess to clean up. Generally, they are irritating because of their sheer numbers. The best management of box elder bugs is prevention.  Take steps to keep them from entering your home from the start. Repair or replace damaged windows and doors.  Seal areas where cable TV wires, phone lines, and other utility wires and pipes, dryer vents and similar objects enter buildings. Then follow up with regular pest control, especially in the spring and fall when box elder bugs are most active, will dramatically reduce or eliminate your box elder bug population. This, of course, can be done by a pest specialist like myself, or you might choose to do it yourself.  Most pesticides with “permethrin” on the label as active ingredient will work to eliminate box elder bugs.  Obviously, I believe hiring a professional is the smart way to go to insure proper application of chemicals to protect you and the environment.

    Cheryl Brunelli

    Pest Specialist

Subtle Hint for the Republian Party…

    I read in the news of late that much teary eyed, hand wringing and gnashing of teeth is going on in the Republican ranks.  I understand they are trying to figure  out what went wrong in last weeks election.  I offer to you that nothing went wrong… Everything went right!!!  The American people are now awake… Yes they are!

    Remember those years long ago, those heady days, when you allied with that radical man and a radical crusade against all America ever stood for?  Remember watching as he systematically dismantled our system of laws and ignored the constitution?  Remember watching that special day when your man denied health care for our children?  Remember the day you sold  your soul to big business and corporate crooks for a few shekels of gain?  On that very same day you sold your honor and left your roots you became useless to the American people.  Following that day every vote you cast was for the enrichment of your owners to the detriment of America and her  people.

    Simply put you ruined America as we knew her and destroyed the once prosperous middle class….  With a wink and nod you held your precious pieces of silver while good American jobs were shipped overseas to exploit cheap foreign labor as our jobs at home disappeared.  You gave CEO′s golden parachutes… you gave American workers pink slips…  Predictably, with no income we soon ran out of money to buy those cheap foreign goods.  The economy tanked.  We soon started losing our homes,  college for our kids,  retirement for  us, we lost everything but hope…

    Yes We Can…  We middle class and poor now see a new opportunity once again to have a responsive government relevant to the American people and our needs instead of a government that worships the god of greed!  You overlooked one simple thing, corporations can′t vote, We the People Can and… Yes We Did!!!

    Ken Back

    While I am thrilled by the election of Barack Obama, my heart goes out to those Americans, particularly the citizens of this community, who just as strongly supported McCain.

    I remember how I felt after the elections of 2000 and 2004, and can only guess that you’re feeling now some of what I felt then.

    I suspect it might be too soon for anything to soften that upset.  This election was an expression of the very real divisions that exist within our nation.  However, I trust that we will find a way to bridge those divides over the next few months and years.

    A democratic republic requires hard work.  However, history is on our side.  Strong differences have been the norm throughout the history of this country.  During other times of strain, we survived and moved forward. We will again.

    We are in this thing together, even though we viewed the candidates and the issues differently.  We are fellow citizens of an amazing country, one that we each love dearly, and one that deserves our hard work and good faith to make better still.

    Loanne Shackelford

    As the majority of Americans joyfully celebrate the mandate given to Barack Obama and the Democratic party, President Bush is actively destroying what little is left of our environmental and social safety net.

    The New York Times reported Sunday that the lame duck Bush administration will dramatically limit Medicaid payments for outpatient services performed at hospitals such as our own Spanish Peaks Regional Health Center.  The American Hospital Association, says this, “will jeopardize important community-based services, including screening, diagnostic and dental services for children as well as lab and ambulance services."  Our entire health delivery system is in crisis and we cannot afford to have our hospitals put in even greater financial jeopardy.

    On the environmental front the Bush administration is rushing through dozens of Resource Management Plans that will affect millions of acres throughout the West for as long as the next 20 years.  From Jan. 1, 2007 to Sept. 8, 2008 over 11,000 gas permits have been issued in Colorado alone.  The drilling is resulting in toluene, benzene and CO2 in the air, "proprietary" hydraulic fracturing fluids injected into the ground, methane in our drinking water; we need tighter regulation now before Huerfano becomes another Garfield County.

    Can we stop it? Only if both Democrats and Republicans demand it.  I am sending this letter to Congressman John Salazar, Senators Mark Udall and Ken Salazar.  I will also send an email to the White House demanding that they respect the wishes of the electorate and stop dismantling the rules and regulations that  protect us.  We won the election; we still haven′t won the war.  Let′s keep the pressure on.

    David Gnaizda, Chairman

    Huerfano Democrats