Barrett best choice for clerk

As a practicing attorney in Elkhart, it is clear to me that Debra Barrett is the best choice for Elkhart City Court Clerk on Election Day.

Debra has the experience, the patience, and the personality to ensure accuracy and professionalism helping citizens and attorneys conduct business with Elkhart City Court. Debra’s competence as a city court clerk is evident as she understands every aspect of the responsibility of the office and has provided efficient solutions when problems arise.

I encourage you to vote for Debra Barrett for Elkhart city court clerk, as she is the absolute best choice to serve our community.

Vicki Becker,

New Paris 

Ashley, for a brighter Elkhart

It is with great pleasure that I express my support behind Ashley Boling Molyneaux, Elkhart mayoral hopeful.

Having left Notre Dame in May 2016, I joined enFocus as an innovation consultant where I was assigned to work with the Community Foundation of Elkhart County. My project focused on improving CFEC internal review systems by setting up a community data framework for grant making and community programming. This data collection and analysis experience helped me to understand the community problems, successes and the potential of Elkhart.

Elkhart community will positively agree with me that indeed best days are ahead. But what is not a matter of opinion is the weighty set of challenges that still threatens its success including violence, controversy over police and community relations, racial division and struggles to make Elkhart vibrant enough to attract businesses and people from outside – the list is endless. A committed, visionary, experienced, knowledgeable, compassionate and reform leader who has ideas and a well-thought execution plan is needed more now than ever before. Elkhart needs a good listener with ability to bring people together. It needs a leader who asks tough questions such as “what is the best thing for the city?”

Having met with Ashley on different occasions and witnessed the impact of her work in the community, I believe she is fit and ready to battle for a brighter Elkhart. I urge Elkhart community to set Elkhart forth on a new progressive path by voting Ashley. If she wins, everyone wins.

Shaban Varajab,

South Bend

Cigarettes bad for Earth

April 22 is Earth Day and much of the world will use that day to focus on global climate change. In Elkhart County, let’s expand that focus. While others are looking up, let’s also look down at our feet – at our streets, parks and sidewalks.

Cigarette butts are the most commonly discarded piece of waste worldwide, and they’re not biodegradable. It is estimated that 1.69 billion pounds of cigarette butts become toxic trash every year, creating an enormous environmental, health and economic burden. A recent study showed that cigarette waste easily meets standardized tests for city and state agencies to label a substance as toxic waste. This hazardous material can persist in the environment for five to 10 years and is often ingested by aquatic creatures, wildlife, and pets, not to mention small children, who can suffer serious health problems as a result.

The environmental impact of tobacco products is another reason to continue comprehensive tobacco prevention and control efforts. Let’s work together to help Elkhart County be free of cigarette butt litter.

If you smoke, you can make the decision to do the right thing for yourself, your family and the environment. Free help is available through 1.800.QUIT.NOW or

Adrienne Thomas,

Tobacco Control of Elkhart County Coordinator

Trim speed at intersection

I am writing to you to express my concerns about road obstruction and speed limit on C.R. 17 and S.R. 120 intersection right by McDonald’s.

I live in a neighborhood close to this intersection and I believe there are a few hazards with it. If you are going up the hill coming off six-span bridge, it is hard to see oncoming traffic. So, what I think should be changed is the speed limit. Also coming up that hill, it is hard to see when the light changes. Changing the speed limit would help that as well.

It will also help the community become safer drivers. People run red lights all the time on this road. But what is the reason? The combination of not being able to see the light coming up the hill and the speed the cars are going. So which is the easier to change, the hill or the speed limit? Obviously the hill would be harder to change with how busy that intersection is and I know how people are trying to get places quickly, but wouldn’t it be worth it when we save a person’s life?

This is why I encourage everyone to support the speed limit change.

Drew McDougle,



Editor’s Note: April 24 is the final day to submit letters to People’s Forum related to the primary election. Letters are limited to 250 words and writers can publish one letter every 14 days. The writer’s name is always printed, and a phone number and address are required for verification. The best way to submit letters is via, but you can also email them to or mail them to People’s Forum, 421 S. Second St., Elkhart, IN 46516.

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