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Letters: Coal; Trump's taxes; Emissions inspections

Letter writer: Coal-fired power plants need to be closed

Coal

To Phil Favero:

Thank you for your guest column (The Capital, Nov. 15) on coal in Maryland. I watched four-and-a-half-hours of presidential debates without a single question on global warming, but 10 minutes with The Capital and I feel well-informed about the status of coal under Gov. Larry Hogan.

By not enforcing the nitrogen oxide regulations of Gov. Martin O'Malley's administration, Hogan has allowed coal power-generating plants to continue operating without installing the latest scrubbing equipment, and to continue to contribute to Maryland's elevated levels of asthma.

I had not heard that "earlier this year, Maryland entered into a consent decree with the company NRG, which exceeded nitrogen emission limits at its Chalk Point and Dickerson coal-based electric generating stations on the Patuxent and Potomac Rivers, respectively. As part of the decree, NRG will pay a $1 million penalty and initiate steps to protect and restore the environment around the plants."

What nonsense! For a generating plant, even $1 million is chicken feed. They need to close the plants, and "restore the environment around the plants."

Coal is cheap to the plants burning it, but very expensive to Maryland when it copes with the resulting pollutants. Thank you for your attention to this important issue.

WILFRED CANDLER

Annapolis

Trump's taxes

Dear President-elect Donald Trump:

One of your many campaign promises to the American people was that you would make public your tax returns when the final audit is complete. Can you check with the Internal Revenue Service and give us an estimate of when that might happen?

With your commitment to making sure that people do their job, I suspect you are quite upset with how long this agency is taking. But then, maybe this is not one of your priorities, given all the other promises you need to keep for those who voted for you.

I know that you are proud of your ability to take advantage of tax law loopholes in order to avoid paying any taxes. Now that you will be president, I'm sure that most Americans are looking forward to your commitment to close those loopholes so that you and all Americans will pay their fair share from now on.

If you are unsuccessful — which I doubt, since you abhor losers — perhaps you can help the rest of us to also find ways to avoid paying taxes. But then, how would we pay for improving our nation's infrastructure, or adding to our defense budget, or building your wall (if Mexico refuses to pay for it), along with the other government-supported programs that that help make our country great?

BERNIE WULFF

Annapolis

Emissions inspections

In November of last year my husband bought a nice used vehicle in Annapolis. The sport utility vehicle was inspected, cleared the Maryland emissions inspection and was in great shape. In October, I went to a great dealer in Laurel (well known) for another vehicle, also slightly used, which was inspected and had cleared the emissions inspection.

Within four months of purchasing each vehicle, we received notifications from the state Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program that we had to go back to the emissions testing facility again. But this had been done prior to purchase.

I would like to ask our lawmakers: Why does a vehicle have to go through an emissions inspection within four months after purchase, if it already has proven certification from a VEIP test?

An inspected vehicle with the stamp of approval of the state of Maryland shouldn't receive a notification for two years after purchase, regardless of the fact that the registration has merely changed hands.

Has anyone ever challenged the state government as to why we get double-charged for this? And how much does the state earn double-charging car buyers for this ridiculous law? Newer vehicles are a credit to the driver and the environment.

DAWN WYNNE

Arnold

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