Letters to the Editor

This is Viewpoints for Thursday, May 21, 2015

Solar financing act enhances options

This week, Gov. Nathan Deal signed Georgia House Bill 57, or the Solar Power Free-Market Financing Act of 2015, into law. As the state’s leading utility serving 2.4 million customers, Georgia Power supports this law and the protection it brings for Georgia customers.

Homeowners have always been able to install solar generation and pay for the installation up front or through a home improvement or equity loan. However, as more Georgians consider solar for their homes, we expect this new law to stimulate the residential market by further enhancing options for customers.

Georgia Power supports this law because of the benefits for customers and for three primary reasons.

1. The law provides clarity for solar companies seeking to enter the market, lease or finance a system to a homeowner and base the payments on the system’s output. This allows the homeowner to purchase or lease a solar system without a down payment and puts the risk of the system’s performance on the financing party.

2. It requires that solar installers meet all local and state laws, as well as safety, power quality and utility interconnection requirements.

3. It clearly defines the difference between a solar installer or financing agent and an electric utility like Georgia Power, which has the obligation to provide reliable service 24 hours a day.

As Georgia’s energy expert, Georgia Power has a statewide team dedicated to helping customers make the most informed choices when it comes to solar and their energy needs. For more information, please visit www.GeorgiaPower.com/Solar for free solar resources or contact us at 866-446-7513 to speak to an Energy Expert.

Georgia Power is building on a century of providing clean, safe, reliable and affordable service and focused on using our expertise to help our customers save money and energy every day.

-- Norrie McKenzie is the vice president of Renewable Development for Georgia Power.

Fast friends and comrades

Last Memorial Day weekend, my husband, Chris and I experienced car trouble while visiting Macon. As we waited for the car to be serviced, Chris struck up a conversation with another customer and the two strangers quickly found common ground. They had both been stationed at Ft. Gordon during Vietnam. Soon, another customer said, “You were in ‘Nam?” The reminiscing began among the U.S. Army veterans. One said, “I was a scavenger. My job was to beg, borrow or steal anything that might be useful to us.” The second man said, “I ran an attack dog at night,” and was expected to sleep during the day when temperatures were unbearably hot. A third man said, “I was in Vietnam, too.” He said as the fighting got closer to his village, his mother realized the family might not survive, so she started ordering her children onto the refugee boats. “Let me tell you, angels don’t just wear white and have wings,” he said as he recalled how a tall, U.S. sailor dressed in white pulled him from a ladder onto the deck as the ship started to pull out of port.

As a military policeman, my husband expected to be sent to Vietnam, but was instead assigned stateside. As the last of our new friends headed out, I thanked him for his service. He said, “You know, I get that a lot.” I think it’s something he and other veteran and active-duty service members don’t hear nearly often enough.

-- Karen Acar Thayer



Isn’t it amazing how the people who commit murder are the first ones who are against the death penalty? Also, how many more times is the U.S. going to give ISIS our guns and ammo before they learn that Iraq is never going to win on their own even with our heavy bombing? It’s the same thing that happened in Vietnam, they lost millions of soldiers but still won the war.

-- Jimmy A. Faircloth



As Ronald Reagan, I did many things Republicans today claim to hate. For instance, I began politics as a Democrat. I graduated from a college.

After becoming a Republican, I signed the first permissive abortion bill in America. After sending five nominees to the Supreme Court, Roe v. Wade was affirmed.

I was caught illegally supplying weapons to murderous regimes twice, including one that would become al-Qaeda. 138 members of my administration were investigated, tried, or convicted of crimes. I employed a cut-and-run foreign policy in Lebanon. I tripled the national debt in eight years.

I took your Social Security Insurance trust fund for which you had paid and diverted its funds to pay for my shortfalls and created the worst recession since 1929. I raised your taxes 10 times.

I claimed that church and state must remain separate. I believed there should be an assault weapons ban. In 1984, I signed a bill that would outlaw Russia forever.

Who knew the Republican Party would later claim Russia’s Putin as their leader?

-- Pat Fair


Books are in style

In response to Aaron McIntosh’s letter on May 19 concerning the empty book shelves in our public libraries, I would like him to know the book shelves are alive and well at St. Joseph’s School library. Ask our students why they check out thousands of books each year. Ask our students why most of them would rather turn a paper book page than click an e-reader. Ask our fourth, fifth and sixth-grade students why they eagerly await the chance to join “Books and Bites” where they eat lunch in the library while listening to a novel. Ask our students why they are so excited about our “Buzz for Books” competition.

Yes, books are on our shelves and in our students’ hands. Check it out. PS: As for the art of storytelling, ask our students how to keep a boo-hag out of your house or who was responsible for saving the life of an African orphan boy accused of stealing.

-- Chris Akin

Media Specialist

St. Joseph’s Catholic School


‘Slowpoke’ law

What’s up with this “slowpoke” law? What if you want to make a left turn or go on a left branch in the only lane available in which to do that and have a moronic speeder behind you? You could drive at the legal speed and get a “slowpoke” ticket, or you could speed up and get a ticket for speeding. Are left turns illegal now, except in the rare instance when the car behind you is OK with traveling the legal speed? Is speeding legal now, since one speeder can force everyone else in that lane to speed?

-- Jerry Miller

Warner Robins

Safe alternatives

What ever happened to the good old days when the worst things we had to fear on Memorial Day were traffic jams and indigestion? This year, it’s all about food poisoning by the nasty E. coli, salmonella and listeria bugs lurking in hamburgers, hot dogs and chicken nuggets at millions of backyard barbecues.

The U.S. Meat and Poultry Hotline’s advice is to grill meat and chicken products longer and hotter. They fail to caution that high-temperature grilling forms lots of cancer-causing compounds. Do we really need to choose between food poisoning and cancer?

Luckily, enterprising food manufacturers and processors have met this challenge head-on by developing a great variety of healthful, delicious, convenient plant-based veggie burgers, veggie dogs and soy nuggets. These wholesome foods don’t harbor nasty bugs or cancer-causing compounds. They don’t even carry cholesterol, saturated fats, drugs, or pesticides. And, they are right there in the frozen food section of our supermarket. This Memorial Day, let’s stay safe on the roads and safe at the family barbecue.

-- Morris Newman


Ideal citizen

During my recent interview of Rep. Austin Scott, R-Ga., in his local office on April Fool’s Day he told me who his ideal citizen is. He is a guy who works for a private company and pays his taxes.

He believes there are too many federal government workers. That is why he introduced a House Resolution to reduce the federal workforce by 1 percent a year for five years in his first term.

-- Frank W. Gadbois

Warner Robins