Proposal 3 made Michigan voting easier

Editor,

What Proposal 3 means for Michiganders for the 2020 elections:

Michigan was a national leader for voting rights in the ’70s and ’80s. But since then, our voting rights have slowly but surely been eroded.

So in 2018, a number of organizations worked together to ask the voters what they wanted by getting Prop 3 put on the ballot. The people spoke loudly as 80 out of 83 counties voted “yes” to Prop 3, thereby making voting easier and more accessible in Michigan.

As a result, we Michiganders will be able to:

• Register to vote anytime, up to and including the day of voting.

• Vote early by requesting an absentee ballot for no reason.

• Be automatically registered to vote when the Secretary of State’s office issues a driver’s license or state ID.

• Vote a straight party ticket if we wish to do so.

• Have all our state elections automatically audited to assure accuracy.

• Have an affirmative right to secrecy when we vote.

These same organizations (League of Women Voters, ACLU Michigan and Proactive) continue to work on making voting easier by requesting that our city, township and county clerks increase voting hours, create several secure drop boxes around town to return ballots, have postage-paid return envelopes for absentee ballots and create satellite voting stations to help support regular voting sites that are traditionally overcrowded.

You can let your local legislators and your city, township and county clerks know if you support these additional ideas or have other ideas that you think will help more Michiganders vote. So please participate in our democracy and make your voice heard. It just got easier!

Cate Fering

Buchanan

State not consistent in condemning local debt

Editor,

The state of Michigan is applying a double standard to Benton Harbor Schools when it allows local governments to accumulate millions of dollars in unfunded pension deficits.

The city of Adrian has a pension deficit of $20,000,000 and you do not see Gov. Whitmer threatening to close city hall down.

According to our city manager, others are doing it so it is OK for us to follow suit. Despite being in default to the pension system, our Adrian leaders spend money like an inebriated sailor. $25K for a dog park, $50K for a fountain, $10K for Christmas lights and so on and so on.

If local governments can have unfunded pension deficits, the Benton Harbor School district should be allowed to carry an $18,400,000 debt without the threat of closure.

Ken Tokarz

Adrian

Youth fair needs better venue for events

Editor,

I was totally embarrassed by the Demo Derby at the Berrien County Youth Fair. Don’t get me wrong, I love to go them, but the venue they are in totally stinks.

It’s way past time to build a new facility for the BCYF to hold events. Quit dragging your feet and let’s get a new facility built now.

Call the Fair Board members and tell them the time to build is now: Rob Christner of Berrien Springs, Bruce Foster of Berrien Center, Ken Kuespert of Niles, Cathy Reifschneider of Stevensville, Noreen Soos of Berrien Springs and Jill Lozmack-Mollberg of Galien.

Jerry Geiger

St. Joseph

Sidewalks needed on Napier Avenue

Editor,

In regard to the pedestrian, Mark Snyder, who was hit by a car on Napier Avenue and later died, I am in hopes that the subject of widening Napier Avenue and installing sidewalks will seriously once again be investigated by the township to avoid any more fatalities.

I have seen many bicyclists and pedestrians navigate Napier, which is dangerous. I would encourage drivers to obey the speed limits and use caution when driving on Napier Avenue.

Dawn Consolino

Coloma