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Charity really should begin here at homeI agree with the author of the May 12 letter, "First, must take care of America's citizens." I, too, feel the U.  
 
Vaccine bill is vital to our communitiesI want to congratulate the Times and Supervisor Mary Piepho for their recent strong support for increasing immunizations through the Pan/Allen Senate Bill 277, which is broadly supported by family physicians and other primary care clinicians in Contra Costa  
 
Grow crops that are right for our climateThe state should not continue to waste our tax dollars on planning the terribly costly, environmentally damaging and disruptive huge twin tunnels to funnel water from the Sacramento River directly to Valley agribusiness and Southern California.  
 
Taking back our city an Oakland priorityThe author of the May 13 letter, "Oakland's sensible people must rise," is not the only person who believes Oakland and its leadership have allowed a city with enormous potential to remain under a darkening cloud.  
 
Why are taxpayers stuck with the bill?I feel compelled to write this letter. I guess what I need are some answers to my questions regarding the new section of the Bay Bridge:A contract was given to a Chinese firm, using Chinese steel, so why isn't the contractor responsible for all of this mess  
 
Thanks to everyone who's backed schoolOn behalf of Bay Farm's middle school program, we would like to thank the parents, teachers, volunteers, school staff and community members who have supported and enabled us to provide a vibrant middle school environment and rigorous education for our students.  
 
Principal's mistakes reveal the hypocrisy Students in the Mt. Diablo school district started taking the Common Core exams recently. To empathize with the students, I recently took the test of released items on the California Department of Education website.  
 
Oakland's citizens must reclaim cityThe author of the May 8 letter, "Town's tolerance has gone too far," is not the only person who believes Oakland and its leadership have allowed a city with enormous potential to remain under a darkening cloud.  
 
UC betraying state taxpayers who support itI am writing on behalf of taxpaying moms and dads of legal California students who have tried to show their children the path to success.  
 
Legislators owe us full disclosureI was appalled to read in your May 2 article, "Fight on to reverse ruling," that Fred Woocher, an attorney for the California Legislature, is appealing a judge's ruling that state lawmakers' calendars must be made public.  
 
Shell drilling places the Arctic in dangerDo you ever wonder what it would be like to go to the Arctic? Such a destination has been on my bucket list for quite a while.  
 
Pleasanton's growth is not sustainableHaving lived in Pleasanton for 30 years, I've made some observations regarding growth and water restrictions. The pendulum of politics has swung far to the right.  
 
We must increase our supplies of waterI raise my voice in chorus with others to support ways of increasing supplies of potable water for California's insatiable thirst.  
 
The drought is not caused by a 'cabal'I'm referring to Marilynne Mellander's letter, "Drought has been created on purpose."If Mellander would research California's drought and weather patterns, rather than blame a "state/federal/international cabal," she'd know the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge,  
 
Leafblowers add to drought fire threatI want to second the sentiments in the May 1 letter, "Leafblowers running on gas deserve a ban," and add my own. We are having one of the driest years on record here in California, and recent severe water use restrictions from the governor are adding to the  
 
City's tax-funded art promotes violenceRegarding a recent article on a downtown Oakland mural "celebrating" Chinese and African-American residents:It should be noted that it also celebrates violent protest.  
 
Black-on-white crime again not reported as suchThe Times and other Bay Area News Group papers, along with the Associated Press, dutifully reported that a man walking his dog in Philadelphia was robbed, shot and killed by three teenage boys in March and that the boys have been arrested.  
 
Dialogue is the key to sharing of the trailThis responds to the article, "Cows, humans, dogs stepping on one another's toes."I live next door to Shell Ridge and my family are avid users of the trails for biking, running and hiking.  
 
May 11 letters to the editor  
 
Baltimore appears to have learned littleIf we simply consider that homicide is defined in Webster's New World Dictionary as "any killing of one human being by another," then, yes, the Baltimore authorities are correct in calling the death of Freddie Gray a homicide.  
 
Democrats favor more illegalsA recent Times recent article reveals the Democrats in Sacramento are proposing 10 bills that would make it easier and more desirable for illegal immigrants to invade our state.  
 
Inclusive projects for Mother's DayThis time of year many teachers are having their students do projects and make cards for their moms. Every mom appreciates the love and effort their children put into this project.  
 
Island an ideal place for more ferry serviceThe Water Emergency Transportation Authority has increased its ridership at Alameda Main Street and Harbor Bay Isle terminals, while also experiencing a significant change in how Alameda commuters get to and from these ferry terminals.  
 
End poverty, give families a chanceThe increase in Bay Area poverty rates is an important issue, especially when you consider the lasting impact of poverty on young children.  
 
BART service not rendered for bills paidDaniel Borenstein is right about a tough sell for more BART taxes from Alameda, Contra Costa and San Francisco counties!  
 
Negative stance on building dismayingI live in downtown Walnut Creek and commute by bicycle 4 miles to my job in Shadelands Business Park.I choose to work and live in Walnut Creek because of the proximity to open space and the regional trail network, as well as shopping and health care accessible  
 
Consider a new way to deliver our energyCommunity Choice Aggregation is a new model that empowers governments to pool electricity customers to form a local power agency instead of buying energy from a corporate utility monopoly such as PG&E.  
 
The biggest wasters should be the target California needs to take further steps to conserve water use. However, the focus needs to shift to industry, commercial buildings and infrastructure, as opposed to oppressively mandating residential restrictions.  
 
Solutions for distracted drivingThere are many tough sanctions and fines for drunken driving. Yet, if someone is texting while driving, the fine's only about $150.  
 
Impacts of Delta smelt's demiseRegarding the loss of the Delta smelt and its impact on California's water supply, not enough emphasis was given to the fact that this is symptomatic of reduction in fish populations in general.  
 
 

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