Letters to the Editor: July 3, 2024

Readers respond to NEA changes, airport expansion and fire stories

(Evan Chandler)

News, June 19: “New School

NEA feedback

Good riddance to Grace Mayer. Her persistence and tactics were often not in alignment with enhancing student outcomes. Her successor should apply a more balanced approach.

Michael Schneider

Santa Fe

Cover story, June 12: “The Fast and the Furious


The traffic “blitz” in May resulted in only seven citations for “mufflers” out of over 500 citations—very sad given the misery these violators cause.

The recent SF Reporter cover story included a photo of a resident with the caption that he is annoyed by three loud cars per day. Our location at south Cerrillos averages three per HOUR. We commonly count 9-10 during each of the commute times.

Given insufficient resources to enforce the loud car ordinance, the ultimate solution is sound cameras that can issue citations like speed cameras.

Until they are in force (we have to be optimistic), there are more immediate ways to mitigate the problem:

• dummy patrol cars stationed at frequent violation sites. We can confirm that when the occasional patrol car stations across from Rudy’s on Cerrillos, the violator noise significantly reduces. It’s the only time we can open doors and windows.

• completion of speed bumps on Governor Miles Road to Cerrillos and add them to Jaguar and other sites (We can’t stand them either, but the super loud car noise is worse).

• reduce the speed limit from 45mph to 40mph (35mph would be better).

Randal Reid MD

Santa Fe

News, June 19: “Flying Start

Flights of fancy

Ain’t it great that we have a newly gussied-up airport in Santa Fe to serve the tourists, the politicos and the well-heeled travelers of Santa Fe! But, let’s remember that the airport also creates added NOISE and pollution for residents of our county. And while services and other facilities intended to serve residents in the city have declined, we can celebrate the marvelous airport…and, oh yes, all the money the airport will generate. Indeed, the city scrubbed from its website all vestiges of the voluntary noise abatement ordinance as well as the noise complaint phone number. It seems like “out of sight” = no problem. Unfortunately, our home is directly impacted every day and all day by flyovers of commercial airline flights, private and national guard helicopters, private small planes and jets and Jet Warbird jets; many burning fossil fuel to recreate. If we’re bothered by the noise, I suppose we should move…but alas, we can’t afford real estate in Santa Fe. Many of those beloved tourists enjoyed Santa Fe so much, they bought a second home here. Now we’re stuck, destined to suffer airport noise pollution all day and every day.

Diane Pinkey

La Cieneguilla

Morning Word, June 18: “Forest advocates question Indios Fire narrative

Fire clarification

Regarding the post on the SF Reporter’s 6/18 Morning Word, “Forest advocates question Indios Fire narrative,” I didn’t “allege the US Forest Service concealed that much of the fire was caused by the agency’s own ‘intentional aerial and ground ignitions’”. I did state that the agency didn’t communicate clearly to the public that they were substantially expanding the fire for “resource management objectives.” Such intentional burning should be done only after an environmental analysis process.

The response from the Forest Service in The Reporter’s post stated that their primary objective for expanding the fire was for firefighter and public safety. It’s very hard to understand planning to manage a 688 acre wildfire so it potentially expands up to 18,218 acres, as the Forest Service did in this operation, to increase safety.When the Forest Service expanded the 2022 Black Fire 10 miles to the south and 7 miles to the northeast with aerial ignitions, doubling the size of the fire, they also stated at first it was for firefighter safety.

They later clarified that it was largely for resource management objectives. This was during the worst NM fire season in years. My article calls for a national review of wildfire management strategies that intentionally greatly expand wildfires for the purpose of attempting to reduce future fire risk and to promote forest health. It’s dangerous and can cause severe collateral damage. I think we have all learned how risky intentional fire can be from the three Santa Fe National Forest wildfires of 2022, caused by escaped Forest Service prescribed burns.

Sarah Hyden

Director, The Forest Advocate

Santa Fe

Letters to the Editor

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