I read, with interest and some disgust, the headline article "How are we going to pay for it?" in the Jan. 4 Times Telegram. My quick reaction was, "With our blood, sweat and tears like all hard-working county residents already do now." That’s the same way we will pay for the cost of the unneeded spanking new county jail that our legislators have imposed on the public, the majority of whom see no need for this new facility to house the worst of our people.

But, that aside, let’s concentrate on the main points reported in the Jan. 4 article: additional mandates, legalization of marijuana and stricter gun laws.

Let’s deal with the legalization of marijuana first. I’ll use a statement from the article to illustrate the emptiness of the argument: "People may be driving around impaired and there’s no test for it in the field." Wow! You mean that driving around impaired by legal marijuana is different than driving around impaired by illegal marijuana? What kind of training would be required for law enforcement officers to distinguish between people who have been impaired by legal marijuana as opposed to illegal marijuana? Maybe, training in psychic powers or the mysteries of magic? You get the point I’m making. There is no realistic basis in fact to suggest that legalizing marijuana will drive up county law enforcement costs. To the contrary, some states that legalized marijuana a few years ago (Colorado is a good example) have seen significant reduction in law enforcement costs and — of course — an increase in revenue from the tax on marijuana retail sales.

The second major point of the article addressed the gun control issue, but with no specific charges made, except a quote from a constituent, "We’re going to be the poorest, safest people in the world," and a guess at what Gov. Cuomo has in mind. Yikes! We may be one of the poorer counties in the state, but I guarantee you it’s not because of existing, or contemplated, gun control laws. If you don’t remember Parkland or Sandy Hook, I can’t help you.

The remainder of this article mentions nothing about further unfunded mandates, but instead is a purely politically-driven Republican rant against the proposed agenda of our Democratic governor. We need to have more intelligent discussions, not politically–driven rants.

Joseph M. Belmont is a resident of Frankfort.