Big Brother Needed
Editor: Statewide support of the proposed environmental measures is needed to protect the future of Maryland. In addition to the Chesapeake, this legislation should also address Maryland's forgotten coastal bays: the Isle of Wight, Assawoman and Chincoteague.
The lower Eastern Shore is rapidly undergoing the same type of sprawl which already created problems in the Baltimore/Washington area with the building of new highways, air and water pollution, loss of forests and other natural habitats.
Few Eastern Shore counties have the planning staffs, expertise or infrastructure to prevent the loss of biological values, environmental quality or even the loss of life and property. Critical area designation goes only to the head of tide of rivers draining into the Chesapeake and does nothing to protect our coastal bays.
In Worcester County, permanent trailer park communities have been permitted in areas under five feet in elevation where certain sites would be submerged under at least four feet of water during a major Atlantic storm.
The impact of rising sea level -- the loss of many marshy islands, increasing erosion and landward migration of wetlands -- is obvious. People who buy property in such low elevations rely on its being there 50 to 100 years from now.
We need ''big brother'' in a state review of growth policies.
lia J. Fehrer. Snow Hill.
The writer chairs Worcester Environmental Trust.
Editor: Your editorial regarding the Linowes commission report contains several incomplete statements which create a false impression as to the effect of its recommendations on Montgomery County. You chide ''wealthy Montgomery County'' for not giving the Linowes report a fair hearing. We heard. And what we heard was far from fair.
While Montgomery County will receive $12 million in additional state payments, this is far offset by the additional $204 million county residents will pay in increased taxes, the loss of previously shared revenues and the cap on the piggyback tax. And this $12 million represents only 2.5 percent of the $800 million in new taxes. The disparity will only widen in future years as the full effect of the cap on teacher pension payments and the piggyback tax is felt.
Montgomery County faces a $70 million deficit this year and a $150 million deficit next year. We have 16 percent of the state's population and one third of its population growth. Few residents of Montgomery County are rich owners of country estates. We, too, have our problems and our needs. All we want is to be treated fairly.
In a time of recession when the state is talking about laying off employees, the last thing we need is to set up a battle between the growth counties and the non-growth counties for scarce resources. We all need to work together to resolve these problems and to make Maryland all that we want it to be.
Fairness? We all want it. And the Linowes commission report stands in its way.
Brett Weiss. Rockville.
The writer chairs the Committee for Montgomery.
Light and Power
Editor: On the night of Dec. 17 and into the following morning, we on Cheswolde Road suffered a power outage.
After a lengthy hassle with an insurance agent, after receiving the news of the death of a distant relative, after losing part of a tooth to my dinner, I was ill-equipped for the sleepless long night's journey into day that followed. B.G.&E.'s brave yeomen worked diligently all night long until 7 a.m. to resuscitate our light, heat, refrigeration and sump pump -- not to mention our peace of mind and our lagging faith in our fellow man.
Many, many thanks to B.G.& E. for the rescue of Cheswolde -- and me -- from certain disaster. And for the soothing voice at their end of the emergency line.
arvin Solomon. Baltimore.
Editor: I would like to respond to the ''cheap shot'' at Allan Levey by Bill Shepard (Opinion * Commentary, Dec. 26). Mr. Shepard engages in thinly veiled whining about GOP appointments by Gov. William Donald Schaefer.
As an active Republican for a number of years, I am aware of the good works of Dr. Levey and others toward making Maryland a two-party system, an idea which Mr. Shepard seems to think he recently discovered.
There are those who feel that he may have single-handedly set the party back years by choosing his wife as his running mate. (There are also those who believe she would have made the stronger candidate for governor).
Republicans in Maryland are doing fine, thank you, and will continue to do better without petty infighting and petulant complaints.
Mr. Shepard's ''manifesto'' is, at best, a series of mixed messages. Are responsible Republicans to resign or decline commissions where the law requires their service?
Taking his implicit suggestion to its logical conclusion, such recent Republican appointments as Ray Beck and Bob Cahill should have refused to accept judgeships because they were appointed by a governor who is a Democrat.