‘Illegal’ Means ‘Against The Law’
Go Solar!

'Illegal' Means 'Against The Law'

After reading Dan Holohan’s column, I go right to Jim Olsztynski’s and then the rest. I enjoyPM100 percent.

November’s issue raised my hackles quite a bit (“Those Illegals We Can’t Live Without”), so I figured I would wait, cool down and let you know how I feel. Illegal aliens are overwhelming America, and Jim’s three points are well taken. However, I’d like to raise three points of my own:

1. Laws must be obeyed and respected. Many employers who hire illegally do so to avoid paying a fair and just wage. Jim, having been in business for more than 30 years, I have experienced no shortages of labor. What I found, and what is preached in your magazine, is this: Pay a fair wage, provide an excellent working environment and show respect to your employees, and you will not experience a labor shortage.

2. As far as costs, a Washington Post article last June states: “From 1993 to 2003, 425 emergency departments closed along with 600 hospitals and nearly 200,000 hospital beds.”

According to the American Hospital Association, “Hospitals in 24 Southwest border counties in Arizona, California, Texas and New Mexico reported $823 million in uncompensated care for illegals.” Untold millions are for welfare, Medicare and Medicaid. I will not go into the crime factors, which cost millions of dollars along with pain and suffering, or the millions of dollars that go out of our country that they use to support their families.

3. Why should I cut them some slack? My forefathers came here legally. And to say our great country’s economy cannot function without illegals is absurd. Jim, do you really believe that? I hope and pray you do not!

It is my opinion this “illegal problem” is caused by a few factors, one that you touched upon, the greed and corruption of politicians, not just in foreign countries, but here in America.

Frank Kozak
Kozak HVAC Inc.
Cedar Key, Fla.

Go Solar!

I just wanted to say thank-you to the editors for allowing Carol Fey to write her piece“The New Market For Solar”regarding solar heating in the February 2007 issue ofPlumbing & Mechanical.

Renewable energy (RE), such as solar domestic hot water heating and solar hot water space heating, is certainly viable for the industry to pursue. Natural gas production has passed its peak, and will be in a constant state of decline as the demand continues to increase. As the global economy continues to exponentially consume nonrenewable sources, RE sources must become a viable portion of our infrastructure. This is critical for us and for future generations depending on our leadership.

I also believe we need to provide our customers the option of an RE component as we design the plumbing and HVAC systems for their buildings. As an industry, we need to provide our customers with a “life cycle cost analysis.” Let the customer decide how much the cost of energy will increase in the future, and help them see that by purchasing a renewable energy system now, the price is locked in at a fixed rate (usually comparable to the monthly rate they are now paying).

Even better, help them to see that at some future time (6-10 years in most solar HW systems - sooner depending on rebates), the RE component will have paid for itself, and the energy it produces for the life of the system (40 years or more) is now free!

Gene L. Kuhns Jr.
J. F. Ahern Co.
Fond du Lac, Wis.