When I saw the past week's issue of The North Coast Journal, I was looking forward to reading the cover story, "Redemption Value" (June 17). However, when I read the second sentence of the article I saw a glaring mistake that stopped me right in my path. The sentence begins: "Back in 1971, when a ragtag crew of AmeriCorps volunteers..."

I stopped reading this right away. AmeriCorps did not exist until September of 1993. It was this year Bill Clinton signed the National and Community Service Trust Act of 1993, creating AmeriCorps and the Corporation for National and Community Service. I believe Ryan Burns was referring to VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) members. VISTA has been around since 1964, when President Johnson created it as part of the War on Poverty. The first VISTAs went out to places like the Appalachia Mountains to help former coal miners get connected with new job skills training. In the 1970s VISTA was under the bigger umbrella of the ACTION agency that included the Peace Corps and the Senior Service Program.

Today, VISTA is under the heading of AmeriCorps and is now known as AmeriCorps*VISTA. In 1971, however, AmeriCorps members could not have helped start the Arcata Community Recycling Center because they did not even exist!

Liz Silver, Arcata



I was incorrect when I wrote to you last week ("Mailbox," June 24) regarding the article about the Arcata Community Recycling Center ("Redemption Value," June 17). In my letter, I wrote that the Journal hadn't covered our marine debris event. 

I did not know the Journal had a blog, where there was an excellent piece by Bob Doran about the art installation at Arcata Elementary School. I guess I need to join the 21st century and look for news on the Internet, not just the printed page. Thank you for your excellent coverage of this important event.

Maureen McGarry, Arcata

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