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Letters are posted as we receive them during the week, and before they are printed in the paper, so check back frequently to see new letters. If you'd like to send a letter to the editor, use this postmarks submission form, or email your letter directly to mail@austinchronicle.com. Thanks for your patience.
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Irony Located

RECEIVED Wed., June 5, 2019

Dear Editor,
    I find it very ironic that our mayor (local politician) Steve Adler isn't happy when our elected state politicians pass much-needed laws that decrease the annual cap of property taxes to a more affordable 3.5%, instead of the previous unreasonable annual increases of 10% in Austin/TCAD. 10% annual increases are outrageous and Mayor Adler is defending that policy.
    Obviously, Austin property owners don't agree with his bad policy. Approximately 142,800 owners (~33%) are filing appraisal protests! This is a new record. Policymakers and citizens constantly discuss sustainability and fairness, so tell me, how is the mayor's policy (that have been going on for many years) of 10% annual increase either sustainable or fair? Government is removing too much money from the pockets of everyday residential and commercial property owners as it is, and this is growing year by year.
    Politicians like Adler keep talking about a housing affordability problem here in Austin and his policies are at the root of the problem. Adler is complaining that the city budget is under stress when 10% increase are not allowed. Really? Everyone wishes their annual budget/available funds would increase by 10% ad infinitum to combat these tax increases (and probably most would be happy to just see the after-tax income go up by 3.5%) I guess some government policies work until to run out of other people's money ….
    I have to thank our state Legislature for understanding to need for more sustainable and fair policies/taxes.
Paul Jacobson

Get the Band Back Together

RECEIVED Tue., June 4, 2019

Dear Editor,
    Not only is Mr. Midwood helping to re-create that Old Austin Vibe of great music & good people almost every night of the week way down south at Sam's Town Point ["The 12 People You Meet at Sam's Town Point," Music, April 26]. Moreover, Ramsay is the only living being that can arrange and host a 12-night GOURDS reunion run. 
    Hell, call them Ants on the Melon or the Declinometers, but let's reach across the aisle boys, drink the gin and juice, and get night one started!!
Paul Wantuchowicz

False Equivalence

RECEIVED Mon., June 3, 2019

Dear Editor,
    In accusing City Council of hypocrisy, last week’s Letter to the Editor “Puppy Abortions?” appears to conflate (whether intentionally or not) the euthanasia of already-born dogs and cats in an animal shelter with a woman’s rights concerning the unborn contents of her uterus. Euthanasia is the (mercy) killing of a being that has already been born. Abortion is the termination of a human pregnancy. It would be in no way hypocritical for the city of Austin to oppose the euthanasia of dogs and cats at the Austin Animal Shelter while simultaneously supporting a woman’s right to reproductive choice. (City Council’s stances on the euthanasia of “stray” human beings or the reproductive rights of pregnant doggies and kitties, if these stances exist at all, are not germane here and will be left for someone else to explore.) We are all entitled to our own beliefs regarding euthanasia and abortion rights, whether for two-legged creatures or four, but the conflation of the two practices serves only to muddy the waters and, moreover, to illustrate the logical fallacy of false equivalence.
Kate Abel

More on Pre-K

RECEIVED Mon., June 3, 2019

Dear Editor,
    This message is regarding the sub-article "Lawmakers Agree to Improve School Funding," [News, May 31] by Austin Sanders. In this article Mr. Sanders writes about "state funding for full-day, high-quality pre-K for low-income students." Please note there are seven ways to qualify for pre-K in the state of Texas. A child who is eligible for free or reduced meals based on family income is only one of those seven ways. The seven possible eligibility requirements listed on the TEA Early Childhood page include a child who is
  • unable to speak and comprehend the English language; or
       
  • eligible to participate in the national free / reduced meal program based on family income; or
       
  • homeless, as defined by 42 U.S.C. Section 1143a, regardless of the residence of the child, of either parent of the child, or of the child's guardian or other person having lawful control of the child; or
       
  • the child of an active duty member of the armed forces of the United States, including the state military forces or a reserve component of the armed forces, who is ordered to active duty by proper authority; or
       
  • the child of a member of the armed forces of the United States, including the state military forces or a reserve component of the armed forces, who was injured or killed while serving on active duty; or
       
  • has ever been in the conservatorship of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services following an adversary hearing held as provided by Section 262.201, Family Code; or
       
  • the child of a person eligible for the Star of Texas Award under Section 3106.002, Section 3106.003, or Section 3106.004, Government Code.

  •     Thank you for including news about pre-K in your article. As an employee of a school district in Central Texas we have a very difficult time informing the public about correct information regarding pre-K in Texas. We appreciate all of the help we can get!
    Sincerely,
    Sarah Walker
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