Mon, July 22

Letters to the Editor

Don't let creeping decrepitude take over Mingus


Have you heard of the broken window syndrome? Someone breaks a window in a building, the owners are slow to repair, some punk breaks another window, and after awhile the tenants stop caring what it looks like.

Or, there's a garbage strike or an understaffed maintenance crew and trash starts to collect. Pretty soon people stop making the effort to throw their own trash away, and, instead, add to the growing eyesore.

Sometimes it's a problem of finances -- the owners just can't afford to fix what's broken. This has been the case at Mingus Union High School for years -- money available for the physical plant goes only so far, and the distance it goes has seemed to shrink as the physical problems have increased.

Now's our chance to show the students and staff, visitors, and the community at large, that we aren't like absentee landlords or those who are penny-wise and pound-foolish. It's time to put some real effort to repairing the school so many of our children have passed through and provide current and future students a facility they can be proud of.

Nip those bad attitudes -- don't let creeping decrepitude take over our school -- vote yes for the bond on Nov. 7th.

Sandy Boothe


Do the math; gas prices here are out of control


It always amazes me how Cottonwood gas stations 95 percent of the time are charging too much.

Here is some simple math and you make your own judgment.

As of Sept. 6, is showing regular gas in Phoenix at $2.559 and two days ago Prescott was $2.626. As of Sept. 6, the lowest fuel price we could find in Cottonwood was $2.829. That's more than 20-cents higher per gallon than Prescott and 27-cents per gallon higher than Phoenix.

Hear is the rip. When I owned a "service station," a truck and tanker held 9,900 gallons of fuel. This is where the simple math comes in. Taking the price difference in Phoenix of .27 per gallon X 9,900 gallons (1 truck load), that's an extra profit of $2,673 to deliver gas to Cottonwood. If you want to figure from Prescott, it looks this way they are "only" .20 a gallon lower than Cottonwood and probably only 43 miles away from here .20 x 9900; that's $1,980 extra delivery charge for Cottonwood per truck load.

Keep this in mind this is over and above the normal profit margins that Prescott and Phoenix are selling the fuel for. I can't believe it costs $2,000 to $2,700 to drive a fuel truck an extra 95 or 43 miles to Cottonwood.

I would welcome a gas station rebuttal.

Ken Cruff


Bond will restore Mingus' glory days


As a resident of the Verde Valley for over 20 years, I remember Mingus Union when it was still new. I graduated from Camp Verde High School and remember how impressed I was as a student to attend and participate in events at the Mingus Union Gymnasium.

I am a physical education teacher at Mingus and have seen the steady decline of the facility. When a facility is up-to-date with new amenities, a sense of strong pride is established.

The gymnasium and locker rooms currently hosts over 800 students a semester in just the physical education classes. Year-round the athletic department uses the gym and locker room areas for our own sports programs and competitive events. Over the years, Mingus has hosted hundreds of sports teams. The Cottonwood Parks & Rec. Department, community blood drives, gem and mineral shows, fundraisers, walk-a-thons and other community clubs also use the MUHS athletic facilities. On the Mingus campus, the gym and locker room area are seen and used by our students and community more than any other facility on campus. We need this bond to help restore the pride we once had for our facility. Pride can generate a respect for things lost and initiate a regained confidence in our school.

What will the bond restore? The primary concerns for repair and replacement in the gymnasium and locker room are lockers, bleachers and the gym floor. Mingus Union High School needs to promote a safe, secure, user friendly and up to date environment.

The current boys' lockers are in disrepair -- so much so that they are hazardous. The lockers that were taken out a few years ago for disrepair have never been replaced. Students risk having possessions stolen because there aren't any lockers for them to store their belongings. New lockers could establish a safe and secure area for all boys' physical education classes and sports teams.

The gymnasium bleachers are outdated and falling apart. To repair the existing bleachers is next to impossible, as the parts have become obsolete. To move the bleachers in and out has become a real chore. Many of the wheels on the bleachers do not function correctly and damage the floor every time they are rolled out. Some bleachers are unable to roll out do to bent framing. The bleachers require up to four people to pull out. New bleachers would substantially change the look of our gym, make it safer and easier for custodial staff to clean and store, and give the gymnasium a much-needed face-lift.

The immense traffic that the gym floor endures is visible. The gym floor has serious damage from over use. Having so many students, teams and other activities on the floor has created scars in the floor that will never sand out. It has become increasingly difficult for the teams to get a good grip on the floor, which puts the athletes at risk for injury. I've seen students pull muscles, fall to the floor and miss competitive opportunities because of the floor surface.

An all-weather track, girls' locker room improvement and football field resodding are some of the other secondary issues that Mingus would like to have restored and upgraded. In the Grand Canyon region we are the only school without an all-weather track. Most of the 58 schools in the 4A conference have all-weather tracks as well. It is clear that Mingus has fallen far behind in these areas. Our students and community deserve to benefit from the amenities that other schools our size enjoys.

Last, the bond has the potential to truly make a difference in the lives of students at Mingus. The gym and locker room facility need these improvements and the people of this community have an opportunity to see this need be fulfilled, I plead with you to make an investment in our students, our future. Whether you're in the gym donating blood, searching for a prized gem, or watching your granddaughter block a volleyball, you can say you helped restore Mingus' glory days. Vote for the bond.

Susan Holm

Department Chair

Mingus Union Physical Education Department

Now let's hope the vandals show some respect


The vandalized memorial plaque in front of the Gazebo, on Main Street, has been repaired, and is back in place.

We thank Johnny Ornelas of Camp Verde Glass and Mirror for materials and expert workmanship.

Beck Hubbell

Friends of Camp Verde

The issue is consideration of others


Open Letter to Cottonwood City Officials

It was most gratifying to read Mr. John Altizer's straightforward letter of Aug. 30, in which he addressed the new current airport rules. When I wrote my letter of Aug. 16, I had no idea the new rules were in effect because the city had not notified us.

It would be most helpful and considerate if we were now furnished in print, via the local newspapers, a brief summary of the current rules as they affect Cottonwood and the surrounding communities. The general public does not have access to the publications mentioned in the letter.

From Mr. Altizer's quote, "no takeoffs and landings and no touch and goes from two hours after sunset until dawn," do we infer correctly that we can now expect to have training exercises as early as 5 a.m.?

For the most part, thinking, responsible people do not disapprove of growth. It is agreed that the airport can be a boon to the development of a community, but only if it is properly supervised and the rules are consistently enforced.

A serious mistake was made in the '80s when a previous Planning and Zoning Commission and a City Council approved some Unit 8 lots bordering the airport without providing an adequate buffer zone. The issue now is whether the current rules will consistently be enforced, not whether the homeowner had looked at the airport map or his CC and RS before he bought his property.

This is not a question of "who came first" but one of consideration of others.

Mr. Altizers phrased it well when he told the members of the Cottonwood Airport Users "observe all noise abatement rules and be good neighbor to the citizens of the community."

An informed public is more apt to be compliant if it is told of policy changes as they occur. It is neither "unreasonable" nor "whining" for residents to expect laws and regulations are enforced, including those pertaining to the airport.

Rosa M. Smith


Here's a Christian movie worth watching


In Terry Mattingly's article "Christian movies ...." he bemoans the poor quality of Christian movies produced, and especially the newly released "Facing the Giants."

I recommend he watch the movie on one of the greatest models of Christianity of the 20th century, "Mother Teresa," starring Olivia Hussey.

Phil Boatwright of The Movie Reporter calls it "the most spiritually uplifting film since "The Passion of the Christ." It is available from It is well worth watching for ALL family members with a Not Rated rating.

Natalie Joels