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First, Borders. Then Rails. 


Humboldt County has transportation nemeses: a harbor nonviable for commercial deep sea vessels, and the Eel River's defunct railbed ("The Disappearing Railroad Blues," May 16). Sometimes flexibility changes perspective.

Humboldt and Mendocino are long counties. Conditions call for economic vision. Suggestion: Weigh amending Humboldt's southern and eastern boundary lines — the southern portion of Humboldt forming a new, southern boundary line straight from the coast to north of Ettersburg, and south of Phillipsville, into Trinity County east of Zenia.

Form a straight line to its new extended line on the south from the junction with Trinity County northwest of Orleans, from Highway 96 south to east of Zenia. If Trinity and even Mendocino were amenable, Humboldt County might strengthen its water habitat resources and better develop agriculture by trading to Trinity and Mendocino County.

Humboldt would gain almost all of the Van Duzen River, possibly part of Ruth Lake, all of Mad River, more of the S. Fork of the Trinity, some of Hayfork, add about 12 miles of the Trinity upriver, and about an equal length of Highway 36. It extricates itself from some of the mired economic mechanics of the Eel River. Then Humboldt can look into what type of rail it might wish to invest to serve its newer, straighter, streamlined perspective through its warmer climes southeast.

Such a ground shift might settle the implausibility of re-laying rail along the Eel River, allowing the past to bury the past, with less encumbered pursuance of problematical mass infusion of federal funds. Local effort can be encouraged to develop acquired land to the east.

— Sharon Pearce, Samoa

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