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Omaha bike trails

Jeff Koterba’s Dec. 27 cartoon got my attention and speaks clearly to a problem that Omaha has yet to solve, the smooth coordination of construction of bike trails when numerous agencies are involved. Bicycling magazine ranks Nebraska and Omaha very low on the “bicycle-friendly” scale.

The prime example is that Father Flanagan Park at 168th and Fort was planned eight years ago and was completed and opened to the public in 2018 with much fanfare. The collaboration between the Papio NRD and Omaha is great, yet with all that planning, not one safe access route by bike exists.

The west Papio bike trail aborts at Fort, effectively preventing access with a “No trespassing” sign 400 feet from the bike trail. My complaint to council member Aimee Melton was deflected by saying that it is unfair for the city to require developers to complete bike trails on a specific timeline.

So, a developer is given unlimited delay, and in so doing, has blocked bike access to Father Flanagan Lake Park, since 168th and Fort are both very dangerous for a cyclist. Elk Creek Crossing Park has an one-mile island of trail from Maple to Fort, with virtually no safe passage to another trail, a situation in place for many years.

It is my recommendation that the city planners find ways to streamline the collaboration with the numerous entities that affect bike lane and trail construction throughout the city. It is no longer acceptable that it takes 10 years to have access to a planned bike route, and during that time, have a developer with a “round tuit” timeline.

Tom Hanthorn, Omaha

Applaud Murante

After reading a few articles reprimanding the State Treasurer’s Office for a recent ad campaign, I feel compelled to speak up. The programs John Murante promotes are worthy of airtime.

Murante’s NEST 529, ENABLE and unclaimed property television commercials are well-written and informative. Mr. Murante does an excellent job delivering the messages.

It’s encouraging to see an elected official take the time and make the effort to educate Nebraskans on solid programs that could make a difference in our lives. We should congratulate John Murante and the agency that produced the commercials on a job well done.

Lucy C. Smith, Valley, Neb.

A matter of honesty

I enjoyed reading the Dec. 30 Public Pulse letter by Michelle Heisler about the misuse of public funds by our state officials.

Maybe Nebraska’s slogan should be changed from “Honestly, it’s not for everyone” to “Honesty: It’s not for everyone.”

Linda Bradbury, Omaha

Democrats’ radicalism

You may not like President Trump and how he communicates, but I have to give him credit. He has given the left no fear in showing you where they want the Democrat Party to go. People like Kara Eastman, who is appalled by Gov. Pete Ricketts wishing Nebraskans Merry Christmas. Really, this is who you want representing Nebraska?

These people who are always screaming about free speech. It is only free if you agree with them. This whole P.C. police thing is nothing but a ruse. Nothing would have been said if Gov. Ricketts were a Democrat or another religion, although it seems Christians have a target on their back from the left.

Hopefully we still have some common-sense Democrats who can still see through this radical socialist agenda and steer their party a little closer to the center like your past president suggested.

Larry Spangler, Greenwood, Neb.

Indictment of Trump is needed

I agree with the sentiment expressed by Mr. Herb Vermaas in his Dec. 13 Pulse letter stating that he would prefer that President Trump be indicted by the Justice Department for the commission of actual crimes instead of through impeachment. It is after all, quite predictable that following impeachment by the majority-Democratic House, the majority-Republican Senate will immediately cleanse the president’s sins with partisan holy water.

I prefer that the president be indicted by either the Justice Department or the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Test the notion that a sitting president can’t be criminally indicted or charged. File the appropriate felony charges against Mr. Trump and let them hang and fester like the sword of Damocles over his presidency and the Republican Party for the next year or so.

Having to defend against criminal charges, whether they are allowed or not, seems to me to be the more pragmatic and correct course of action for the Democrats. If an impeachment produces nothing more than a pyrrhic victory for the party, I think an equally productive and more dramatic option is to file the criminal charges. At the very least we won’t be pummeled by the obnoxious and repetitive garbage spewed by Republican Judiciary Committee members in their failed attempt to legitimize the president’s behavior. And, I think the general public may be more inclined to sit up and take notice when a president has to defend himself in a court of law!

Ben Salazar, Omaha

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