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Reader Forum: Should local City Councils make resolutions on national issues?

Some readers say a city’s top board should tackle issues beyond the traditional realm of municipal government.
Others, though, say the council should stick to close-to-home topics. Several recent resolutions voted on by the Northampton City Council prompted readers to write in. Read those letters below:

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Paul Redstone: Let’s call ‘drones’ what they really are

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

To the editor: I was extremely pleased to discover that the City Council approved the resolutions critical of the various types of “drone” activity from surveillance to “extrajudicial killings” and beyond. I have been struck by our easy use of the term “drone” as a word to cover a whole range of quite distressing and problematic government activity. The politics … 1

Barbara Fink: Council not elected to rule on all issues

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

To the editor: Unless I missed the City Council’s outreach to the citizens of Northampton to assess their approval level, the council’s resolution to chastise the federal government for its domestic and international drone policy seems to represent its personal opinion. Perhaps that is what is meant by “the official position.” If this is so, and “we, at the grassroots … 5

Helen Wise: Taxation, not resolutions, top issue for this voter

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

To the editor: I commend Councilor Gene Tacy for speaking up at a recent Northampton City Council meeting and on the radio on behalf of property owners of modest means — the elderly, disabled, single parents, single people and others who were struggling to pay their swiftly rising property taxes before last month’s override vote. For these groups, simply dealing …

James E. Durfer: Council should leave childhood pursuits behind

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

To the editor: It is time for the Northampton City Council to grow up. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me and didn’t waste time with silly drone resolutions. James E. Durfer Florence …

Reader Poll: Should local government pass resolutions on national issues? 78% say No

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

In a poll on GazetteNET from July 12-15, 343 readers answered the question whether local municipal governments should spend time crafting and passing resolutions on national issues. Here how they responded: No: 78%, 267 votes Yes: 15%, 51 votes It depends on the issue: 5%, 16 votes I don't care: 3%, 9 votes Take the GazetteNET poll, featured on the …

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