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Letter: Taxpayers are more important than birds

To the editor,

Did you see the front page news of the Hastings Star Gazette on May 8? The story said that between $30,000 to $100,000 will be spent on a study to determine the impact of the new bridge on birds.

It’s strange, but it seems that birds get more attention and protection than tax-paying citizens do. The Minnesota Department of Transportation, the Dakota County Transportation Department, Nininger and Marshan townships, the Dakota County Sheriff’s Department, Dakota County Commissioner Mike Slavik, State Representative Denny McNamara, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, as well as several offending private trucking companies, have all been contacted regarding their responsibilities in upholding Minnesota Pollution Control Agency Rules Chapter 7030 and Minnesota Statute 169.69 which pertain to noise pollution and of particular note: Excessive vehicle noise.

Those of us in the general proximity of highways 61, 316, 55 and 52 and County Roads 46 and 47 to name a few, are in the hub of a highly-traveled traffic zone. Our quality of life is being compromised by loud engine braking and loud exhaust pipes that do not blend in with standard vehicle noise. The laws and regulations are already in place to protect us from noise pollution but they are not being effectively upheld. Additionally, in spite of numerous attempts, requests made to various government entities to pass local noise ordinances and post noise ordinance signs have been completely snubbed. No one will listen. No one will act.

We have been told it would cost too much to enforce this law. But yet $100,000 can be spent to study birds. Really? To all of you elected officials and those government employees whose salaries we pay: please step up and take care of your citizens, too. When you consider the return on your investment, we can provide you with a lot more tax dollars than a bird can.