Drunk driving plagues the Valley

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Another summer in the Flathead will be winding down in short order. Thank God.

This summer has seen the most tourists in memory. Our roads are clogged with countless out-of-state people and the accident rate in June was the highest in 10 years. We donít have enough local drunks so we encourage huge numbers to come to the Flathead and party. This county will become Los Angeles East and New Jersey West in a few years.

Our state and county have encouraged this insane growth and tourist trade to the detriment of local residents. Bigfork has become insanely crowded and many locals avoid the events downtown. Every time you turn around there is a new event in Bigfork. I am expecting that we will soon have the Montana sewage festival appear soon. I was astounded after contacting the Department of Revenue in Helena when I learned that Bigfork has 50 liquor licenses. What a great combination. Choked highways and plenty of booze for everyone.

I have personally been stopped in traffic three times this summer due to fatal accidents. A driver from Minnesota killed a mother and daughter on Montana 35 a few weeks ago. Another driver from Washington was passing in a no-passing zone outside of Bigfork and hit a truck head-on, causing severe injuries to several children in the vehicle. A couple of months ago an alleged drunk driver crashed into a Kalispell home and killed a beautiful teenage girl who was sleeping.

Residents of this valley have to put up with this insanity every year and the least our elected officials could do is give residents some tax relief with a tourist tax.

We need to stop over advertising this valley and stop our drunk driving culture.

Ronald McCormack, Bigfork

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