I would like to respond to the June 25 letter from Don McDonough of Ryland Homes, regarding the purchase of land so that the Charleston County landfill can be expanded.

Yes, the move may save money in the long run, but it will have a negative effect on those living within a 2.5 mile radius. Thousands of homes are in that area, and most residents have smelled the landfill odor at one time or another. Many don't realize that's what it is yet, but they will.

The pungent odor of sulfide and ammonia gases that are emitted from decaying organic material is a by-product at every municipal waste landfill. That is why most new landfills are placed as far away from residential communities as is economically feasible. These odors are typically worse in cooler, calm weather conditions.

At least two to three days a week, the smells are present, sometimes only for minutes, other times for hours.

The changing winds mean the odor is not constant. This landfill is in its infancy, but as the level of waste increases, so will the odor.

In researching municipal waste landfills I have yet to find one that was considered to be a success or a good neighbor when located near a residential community.

If the difference in tipping fees is $30 a ton to dump at Bees Ferry or $36 a ton to dump at other landfills, I would vote to dump it elsewhere.

As this becomes a major nuisance to residents, the increased tipping cost may be less than the cost of installing an active gas mitigation system.

Presently living with the landfill is tolerable, but as the county decides to pile it higher and deeper I'm afraid that this part of West Ashley will become just another horror story that you will read about on the web and is typical of living near a landfill.

Nancy Motyka

Bent Hickory Road

Charleston

I went to a truly inspiring gathering on June 23. A group of compassionate Christians who were seeking to tear down barriers of race, language and misinformation gathered together to promote and share a documentary produced by the Evangelical Immigration Table titled "The Stranger," a work that asks Christians: How do we as Christ-followers approach the issue of immigration and immigration reform?

This event, held at Faith Assembly Remount Road, brought together immigrants and naturalized citizens, young and old, male and female, English speaking and non-English speaking, informed and uninformed.

The theme was that educating yourself on the issue of immigration is a great benefit to our health as a nation. More importantly for Christians, this education reminds us that no matter where you're from, what you look like or what language you speak, you are a precious and valuable child of God.

We as Christians should respect the law, but it is also our duty to show love to the stranger and work for his benefit as a brother or sister in Christ. It is our duty as Christians and as citizens to actively work with our government over how best to improve immigration in America.

We are suffering because of out-of-date and unreasonable laws. Let's rally together as we seek to improve the economic, political and spiritual health of this great nation.

KATELYN CARTER

Thousand Oaks Circle

Goose Creek

As I read Schuyler Kropf's July 1 article about Gov. Jim Edwards' stroke, all I could think about was how much love and respect both the governor and Mrs. Edwards receive from our community. They truly are Southern gems.

Politicians of character like Gov. Edwards really are few and far between. I put Arthur Ravenel and Tommy Hartnett in that same category. I guess it's no coincidence that these three men are friends.

Unlike today's politicians, all three served this county, state and nation with integrity and honor and with no hint of scandal.

In today's political world, distrust and hate seem to be the norm.

For these men it was honesty and good will.

I'm proud to know all of these men, and I thank the good Lord, he's kept Gov. Edwards around a little longer as an example of what politics should be like, not what it has become.

Charlie Lybrand Charleston County

Register of Mesne

Conveyance

Cloudmont Drive

Hollywood

According to the recent AARP scorecard, our state is doing a slightly better job helping its older residents live independently in their chosen residences as they age. South Carolina has moved from 37th ranking among all states to 34th.

I welcome the news of rank improvement, but older adults in the Lowcountry remain in dire need of community and public support.

Among the many needs are support for caregivers, public transportation that is age friendly, affordable (sustainable) housing and employment opportunities for older adults who desire or need to work.

Fortunately, S.C. lawmakers approved $2 million in the budget to provide respite care vouchers so that family caregivers can have a break.

While this public support is welcome, it is not sustainable in the long run, given the huge increase in our older population.

Several Charleston neighborhoods are establishing volunteer groups to carry out similar tasks and are organizing themselves as independent, self-directed "villages," part of a grass-roots national movement where neighbors help other neighbors age in place.

The city of Charleston Mayor's Office on Aging and the South Carolina Aging in Place Coalition (www.scaipc.org) are helping neighborhoods organize villages and provide opportunities for older adults to remain independent longer.

The shortage of affordable housing in the area, particularly as it pertains to adults, has been highlighted in national rankings since 1991.

Yet the Charleston region continues to suffer from an increasing shortage of affordable housing even as the population of older adults increases.

This issue is closely connected to the need for public and private transportation near where older adults live.

Without the opportunity to travel to local stores for groceries, to attend religious services and doctor appointments, older adults cannot sustain their independence.

Some transportation services are available, but they are very limited and need to be expanded.

As life expectancy has increased, the need and desire to continue to be productive and engaged has increased the quest for employment among older adults.

Several major employers in the area have discovered the value of employing older adults and have joined with the South Carolina Aging in Place Coalition - in collaboration with Palmetto Goodwill - in an effort to increase opportunities for employment among older adults.

By improving the financial health of older adults through employment, combined with affordable housing, age-friendly transportation and community support for caregivers, many older adults can and will be capable of aging in place, remaining independent longer and reducing the need for public and private financial support.

Barbara Franklin

Concord Street

Charleston

State Sen. Vincent Sheheen wants to bring up Gov. Nikki Haley's tax returns.

His recently released returns show he made $73,000 and change in the year 2000 before acquiring his Senate seat.

His income rose to $372,000 and change in the year 2009 after acquiring his Senate seat.

He attributes this to "working harder."

Wouldn't we all like to increase our income by over 500 percent just by working a little harder?

I'm sure this huge increase in income didn't have anything to do with political clout and influence.

He might think twice before opening this can of worms.

Earl Thacker

Greymarsh Road

Mount Pleasant