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Letters: Keep families, including Christ's, in mind; More taxes ahead

Keep families, including Christ's, in mind

At this Christmas season — when so many of us revisit the story of a family in dire straits sojourning in a strange land, with a soon-to-be mother — we must stop all funding for the separation of families at our border(s).

How many more must die at the hands of ICE or risk never seeing their families/children again?

Karl Hamann

Red Wing

More taxes ahead


There must be something wrong with our state government. They have a budget surplus.

Our state and local governments seem to hold to the principle that enough taxes are never enough.

Our elected officials know what is good for us and will find a way of spending our money.

Budget cuts and smart spending? Enough of these foolish ideas, Goodhue County needs more taxes.

Also remember the new county sales tax starts next month.

Butch Berlin


Snowmobilers, know before you go

Although much of Wisconsin has experienced colder temperatures and accumulating snow, the Association of Wisconsin Snowmobile Clubs reminds snowmobilers many — if not most — trails are not open.

Before a trail can be opened, the ground under the snow needs to be frozen to ensure trails crossing wet areas are safe. In agricultural areas, adequate snow is necessary to protect the ground and crops the trail travels over.

To ensure you know which trails are open in your community, go to at or for the latest information.

After trails are opened, be aware as early season riding conditions magnify possible hazards under the snow. Snowmobilers should always ride with caution and never ride on trails crossing lakes or rivers that are not marked by the local snowmobile club.

The AWSC consists of over 610 snowmobile clubs from every county. Community-based clubs and their 41,000-plus volunteer members are solely responsible for developing and maintaining over 24,000 miles of public snowmobile trails. Club members brush, clear, sign, and prepare the trails, along with grooming them to ensure they are smooth and safe. Annually, these volunteers work many hours in partnership with dozens of gracious landowners to ensure trail access, as most trails are on private property.

Without the support of thousands of landowners, the trail system would not exist. Thus, riding on closed trails or traveling off a marked trail is not only dangerous, it's trespassing.

Wisconsin's snowmobile program is administered by the Department of Natural Resources but unique in that it is a user-funded program. In short, snowmobilers provide the funds — through sled registrations and trail pass fees — to create, maintain, and sustain the largest public trail system in the nation. Additional funds come from gas tax monies snowmobilers generate. These user-generated funds help reimburse local clubs for some of the expenses they incur.

The season is here, so make sure your snowmobile has a current registration and a 2018-2019 Wisconsin Trail Pass. For information, go to

Snowmobiling is not only fun, it provides millions of dollars that fuel Wisconsin's winter economic engine. For more information or to join a local club, visit

Don Hamilton, DeForest, Wis.

Tom Lubich, Prescott

Don Hamilton is the AWSC coordinator, and Tom Lubich is president of the Pierce County Snowmobile Council.

Trump delivers tax trilogy

When the politicians decided to redo the tax codes and the wealthy were given the big tax cut, I wondered where and how the money was going to be replaced. It took awhile but it is finally coming clear on how it is supposed to work. It's the Peter to pay Paul theory.

Donald Trump stated the economy is doing great so it is time to attack the tariffs.

Tariffs are just another term for taxes. The feds tax everything that comes into the USA and explain it away as trying to make the playing field fair. Awesome. With the "we'll show them attitude," the average citizen feels it's for the good of the country but in reality it's a tax being paid by the consumer on everything to replace the government's give away.

I think I got it: You give a tax break to the rich, tax all consumer products to replace the tax, then convince the citizens it's a good thing while DT's foundations takes in a haul. A modern-day tax trilogy.

Tony Huppert

Spring Valley, Wis.