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Your Views: Water allotment should include purified returns
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If you loan someone a dollar and they return 90 cents, you are not out a dollar but just 10 cents. Simple arithmetic, easily understood using dollars, but not understood in the famous water wars.

Let's see how it works with water. If you withdraw 10 million gallons of water a day from the reservoir system and return 9 million gallons a day, simple arithmetic shows only 1 million net gallons has been withdrawn.

Can we do this? We already are. We just aren't using the arithmetic for allotment. Many cities withdraw water from the lake, use the water, clean it up and return it to the lake. Plans for distribution ignore the recycling that occurs.

If you do much boating, you probably drove past the pumping station where we withdraw water and past the purification and filtering plant where water is purified and returned. The water coming in is counted as allotted water and the water returned is most probably measured, but the information is not used for allotments.

There was much in The Times about Gwinnett County's plans to return millions of gallons of recycled water to the lake. This type of return should be figured into distribution allotments as it affects the flow downstream. A million-gallon withdrawal will not cause a million-gallon depletion of flow downstream because of the returned water.

If no water is returned, the lake would dry up. It is that simple. Credit for return will show true water use and encourage recycling. Each city would have its recirculation rating to use in determining water allotments from the reservoir.

Municipalities would be motivated to minimize use for such things as watering or other water use that is not recycled to the lake as ties to reuse will affect their allotment.

Lee S. Bowers
Gainesville

Obama quick to condemn police but not professor
Last week's press conference by President Barack Obama was a yawn, since it produced nothing new on the health care front. The one thing that did effect me greatly was his input on the arrest of Professor Henry L. Gates in Cambridge, Mass. By doing so, our president created more of a racial divide by calling the arresting police "stupid" and insinuated it was racial profiling.

Obama should never have answered the press question by referring it as a local matter. He seems to not be able to leave his community organizing roots and understand he is president of all Americans.

From reading the arrest report, Gates was being uncooperative and shouting at the officers. He was charged with disorderly conduct since he followed the officers outside yelling and causing a scene as it was drawing a crowd. He directed his rant toward the officers, white and black, for responding to a neighbor's call of someone breaking into his home, one that someone had tried to break in before in an area of recent occurrences.

As they were doing their duty to protect his property, police asked for his identification to make sure he was the owner. That's when the professor of African-American studies decided to rant and rail at the officers. If anyone was race-baiting, it sounds like it was the professor.

He should have thanked the officers for coming to his aid. What would have happened if he was inside and someone did break in and cause him harm? Officers never know what they're going to find at a scene of a crime. They have to be prepared for the unknown and respond. Shame on Mr. Gates for acting like a fool by directing his racial agitation at them for doing their duty to protect and preserve.

It's a very sad and troubling situation, but Obama made it worse with his rush to prejudge the officers as a black man and not a president. Clearly this is troubling since he called it a stupid act by the police. So the message to others is what? Police are stupid and not to be trusted?

I hope the nation's police unions rise up and demand a apology from Obama since he rushed to judgment as he is rushing everything else without a clear understanding of facts or realities of his actions to others.

Jane Browder
Gainesville

If it's good enough for us, why not for our leaders?
Finally. The $50,000 question was asked July 23 on ABC's special on health care. President Barack Obama was asked, "Mr. President, will you and your family give up your current health care program and join the new ‘Universal Health Care Program' that the rest of us will be on?"

Obama ignored the question and didn't answer it. A number of senators were asked the same question and their response was "we will think about it."

It was also announced today that the Kennedy health care bill has written into it that Congress will be exempt from this great health plan.

How about them apples? It's not good enough for President Obama or Congress, but OK for the rest of us. We, the American people, need to stop this as soon as possible and revolt. This is wrong!

Coleen McConnell
Gainesville

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