Well, I listened as President Donald Trump addressed the nation concerning border security and the partial government shutdown.

While I agree with the need to secure our border, the president did not say anything that we have not heard before.

I read a story of the president’s visit to the border town of McAllen, Texas, and his attempt to show the need for a border wall.

Apparently, it backfired because residents and the town’s mayor said such a wall is not a good idea. The question of how a border wall would help stop the flow of drugs through tunnels and legal ports of entry was raised, but there reportedly was no answer.

I wanted to hear his proposals to end the government shutdown and get on with the people’s business.

I also heard the Democratic response. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said they agreed with the need to secure the border, but they did not suggest any ideas to do that. However, I like their idea that the government be reopened while negotiations continue over funding for the border wall or a barrier of some kind.

While all this partisan bickering is going on, approximately 800,000 federal employees are impacted by this shutdown. Approximately 420,000 are working without pay while approximately 320,000 are furloughed.

In the meantime, members of Congress and members of the Trump Administration are receiving their paychecks. How fair is this?

I see the Sierra Sands Unified School District Board of Education named Dr. Dave Ostash the next superintendent to replace retiring Superintendent Ernie Bell.

The board made an excellent decision. I have known Ostash for much of my newspaper career when he was assistant principal of Burroughs High School, principal of James Monroe Middle School and principal of Burroughs.

I always found him to be very approachable and open, and students have thrived under his leadership.

During his tenure at Burroughs, the school was named a California Distinguished School.

I am glad to see the Rand Communities Water District making progress in implementing the Kern County Grand Jury’s recommendations. I look forward to seeing the district’s website when it is ready.

What about a cost-of-service study? That really needs to be done.

— John V. Ciani is a retired Daily Independent reporter and contributing columnist.

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The views expressed are those of the columnist and do not necessarily represent the official stance of the Daily Independent.