Letters from our readers: Give property owners tree-care incentives 

In another stick-but-no-carrot plan, San Francisco wants tougher laws to mandate that property owners help make a greener city.

Having a green city by planting more trees is a good idea because it does help the environment. But punishing property owners with fines of several hundred dollars and replacement costs for not maintaining “their” trees is dictatorial.

Create a greener city with an incentive program, not decrees. Allow property owners to deduct the costs of maintaining trees from their property taxes with a dollar ceiling per tree. If there are no trees on the street in front of their property, give a deduction for the cost of installing a tree.

Ron Getty, Vice chair, Libertarian Party, San Francisco

Perplexing headline

Your headline was very perplexing on the March 1 story about the assault and robbery resulting in deportation for a young boy (“Deported over a 46-cent fracas”). Upon first glance, it looked like you were trumpeting a story about a poor kid who’s getting deported unjustly for a schoolyard squabble. Buried paragraphs down, a different story seems to emerge.

An undocumented teenager extorts, assaults and robs another student, and it is deemed a felony by the facts of the mugging. Granted, it did happen at school, and felonies such as the recent gang rape in Richmond, violent assaults and robberies should be viewed more seriously.

But I thought upon first reading your front-page headline that it was about 46 cents and not a violent robbery. I should have known it was not the amount of loot that is the most salient fact of the case, but whether it was violent assault rising to the felony level.

Since you put it that way, I say let’s keep the young’un here in the states where he can learn from real pros about assault during incarceration for his slightly boisterous playground squabble.

John J. Dillon, San Bruno

Stop salt ponds meddling

David Lewis of Save the Bay is again attempting to negate Redwood City’s planning process, just like a couple of years ago when he unsuccessfully put Measure W on the ballot to require a two-thirds vote by the electorate before any development could be done.

This time, he’s trying to pressure the Redwood City Council to stop the democratic planning process before the environmental impact review. He doesn’t seem to understand that the City Council has a responsibility to the citizens of Redwood City to examine all aspects of the proposed Cargill salt ponds development in order to make an educated decision.

You can be sure there will be more news conferences and more attempts to circumvent our process. You can also be sure that Redwood City’s leaders will not cave in to outside pressures and will go forward with the environmental impact review, because that’s what the residents want.

Barb Valley, Redwood City

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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