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DeWittDailyNews.com welcomes letters to the editor, as a way we can let our readers and listeners sound off on the issues most important to them. If you wish to submit a letter, please note the following guidelines: 
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We look forward to hearing from you.

Letter to the Editor on Getting Third Parties On Ballot in Illinois


Posted December 30, 2019


Dear Editor:


Dear Editor,

As we enter a new year, a new decade and yet another election cycle, the ongoing question from fed-up voters keep ringing in my mind: “Why don’t we have other candidates running for office? These candidates on the ballot are awful!”


It’s an easy and difficult question to answer, so allow me to break the response into two parts:

Easy response: Democrats and Republicans in Springfield set the thresholds for ballot access regarding all partisan political races from statewide all the way down to the township level. The thresholds they set almost 90 years ago have been preferential treatment toward both parties, while they set ridiculous amounts for anyone unaffiliated with the political duopoly to run for office.

Difficult response: The two-party system hates competition and does everything they can to keep new party and independent candidates from getting on the ballot.


Depending on the particular political race – and often the county – a new party or independent candidate is forced to collect anywhere from three to 150 times the minimum threshold for Democrats and Republicans. Take, for instance, our statewide races. Democrats and Republicans only have to file a minimum of 5,000 signatures. If you’re a Libertarian, Green, Constitution or other party candidate, or if you’re an independent, you have to collect a minimum of five times that threshold and then submit double that to survive a challenge (usually instigated by the Illinois GOP).


Since 2013, state legislators have introduced legislation creating for an even playing field, regardless of political party, starting with state Sen. Andy Manar with Senate Bill 1624. Former Sen. Kyle McCarter and Rep. Allen Skillicorn introduced companion bills in the previous General Assembly. In this current Assembly, two House bills with the same goal – making the petitioning threshold the same for all political races, regardless of political party – in the form of House Bills 3535 (Stava-Murray/Ammons) and 3828 (Skillicorn/Welter/Carroll) have been brought forth.


It’s overdue time to change yet another outdated election law. Three previous election laws have been struck down in Federal court against former Attorney General Lisa Madigan and with no legislative action, the ballot access petitioning threshold could end up in the courts as well.

Contact your legislators to have them look at the bills and ask for their support:


Senator Chapin Rose SD 51 (217) 607-1853 or (217) 330-9356

Rep. Dan Caulkins HD101 (217) 782-8163 or (217) 876-1968


Nathan Florey

Chairman, DeWitt County Libertarian Party

Deputy Director of Communications, Libertarian Party of Illinois

Clinton, Illinois

Letter to the Editor: Local Farmers Need Support in Washington


Posted December 24, 2019


Dear Editor:


As a corn farmer, I am concerned about the future of rural Michigan, including my farm. During the campaign trail, we heard President Trump's promises to support farmers; however, His actions in Washington DC do not match his words on the campaign. Instead, the President's actions out of Washington DC continue to support only the most powerful players, like big oil companies, while harming the livelihood of farmers like me. 
Over the last several months, President Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has sided with the likes of big oil companies and refused to repair the damage done by special refinery waivers that have destroyed the demand for biofuels made from farm crops. These waivers have ultimately lost billions of gallons of ethanol and caused several ethanol plants to shut down, creating more pain for farmers and employees. 


Although President Trump ordered the EPA to restore all the lost gallons, as the law requires, the EPA pulled a bait-and-switch by introducing a rule that offers farmers no certainty on moving forward. While I am grateful the president expressed his support for the farm community, it's imperative the EPA act on his words.


Eric Voisinet
Laingsburg MI 48848


Letter to the Editor Opposing Tradewind Energy Wind Farm


Posted December 18, 2019


Dear Editor:



The DeWitt County Wind Proposal is still the same thing in the same place, within the 'Mitigation Zone' of NWS Doppler Radar. Why not call it “The White Tornado”? Revising this second SUP, 92 out of 118 non-participants will have INCREASED shadow flicker.


David Loomis, their "expert," likes all of the benefits of importing Wind Energy. This will create GDP somewhere. For Denmark, China, and many places, this offers tremendous opportunity. Their study does not analyze net jobs. It analyzes the gross jobs that the new wind farm development supports. Gross. (page 14 of the EIS)


As far as benefitting our local economy, I disagree with their sales pitch. I guess industry "experts on wind energy" don’t talk about cash value. The bottom line is this. It's about 43 cents on the dollar.

Their sales pitch "$22 million in revenue for Clinton schools" has a 'Cash Value’ around $ 10 million. Similarly, $ 4.6 million for the County is worth around $ 2 million.

The ‘Cash Value’ for each Tower in this scheme is about $ 158,000   

Landowner will of course receive 30,000 tons of concrete they’ll get to keep. That’s fine. Irreversibly alter the value and character of their land, for a present value of $158,000.


Same scheme as those TV commercials, "Sell Your Structured Annuity."

No Thanks. Sorry Gentlemen, I will need to offer additional commentary on your financial analysis as this will affect a critically important land use decision that affects my County. 


See you in January.


Bradley D. Barnes, MBA

Clinton Illinois

Letter to the Editor On Not Being Allowed to Speak at DeWitt County Zoning Board of Appeals Meeting


Posted December 6, 2019


Dear Editor:

On Monday, December 2nd I attended the DeWitt County ZBA meeting where they discussed a group of anti-wind farm ordinance amendments. I was appalled by the way the meeting was run.


I am a wind farm supporter and I signed up on a list to speak to the board. Once public comment began, the list was abandoned, and people wishing to speak were required to just stand up and do so. Or so I thought. When I stood up to go speak, the ZBA Chairman asked me if I was on the list. I said yes I was. The problem is that a few minutes before me, they allowed two anti-wind farm speakers to speak who were not on the list.


Later on, a wind farm supporter who attempted to speak for a second time was refused the right to do so on the grounds that nobody can speak twice. Yet later in the meeting, an anti-wind farm commenter was allowed to speak for a second time.


It seems that this meeting was run to shut out wind farm supporters from giving their opinions. The only question is, why? 

Rebecca Fatheree

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