Use schools all year
From: Bill D. Burlison
In Anne Arundel, we have too many school-age children for the existing physical school plant.
There appear to be two conflicting proposals to solve the dilemma. One is to charge builders increased impact fees to help pay for new schools and streets. This appears to be the favored plan of the elected officials. The other is to place a moratorium on new residential construction. The appointed county school board leans this way. The home construction industry is opposed to both.
Thus far, the debate has been well-focused and adequately reported by the press, except for one detail. The taxpayer-oriented solution has not been mentioned. That solution to use the schools all year rather than two-thirds of the year. Instead of a two-semester year, with everybody going to school the same two semesters and taking the summer off for one, assignments would be made as necessary to equalize the student loads over three semesters.
A moratorium on new school construction would be the effect, saving taxpayers scores of millions of dollars. School teachers and workers would be provided with a full-time job, their pay increased.
This plan would inconvenience some students, parents and educators. After observing the victories of the special interests in virtually all issues that confront our government, and indeed, our society, it would be refreshing to see the taxpayer win one.
From: Valerie K. Miller
In reference to John Morris' article on [the State Highway Administration's] most recent flouting of rules and regulations in regard to the proposed 80-foot-high bridge over the Severn River, I would like to point out the following:
The SHA just happened to "misplace" a sediment trap on the original plans. This "misplacement" reduced the amount of wetlands incursion that SHA said was required for construction. More importantly, it enabled SHA to get a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers without an environmental impact study (EIS). If the true amount of wetland disturbances had been revealed, an EIS would have been required.
Senator Winegrad is in error in stating that the wetlands would be disturbed by a low bridge alternative. A new low bridge or replacement of the existing bridge would not need the massive road reconstruction required by the 80-foot bridge. The relocation of Route 648 for access to an elevated bridge is the reason for the wholesale destruction of the Pendennis Shrub Swamp and its wetlands. Wetlands, as pointed out in the article, are a delicate and sophisticated balance of natural elements. You don't "create" wetlands by going to the local nursery and buying some grasses and bushes to plant!
The senator's sobriquet as "a leading environmental activist" is in question as a result of his actions on the proposed Severn River bridge and Westinghouse issues.
From: Diane L. Lenzi
Principal, Park Elementary
I and the staff of Park Elementary would like to thank the following businesses in Brooklyn Park for donating gifts given to 32 Brooklyn Park Elementary students who had perfect attendance all school year. These businesses' generosity makes strong statement about the importance of school attendance:
Amoco Gas Station; Citgo Gas Station; Erol's Video Rental; Farm Fresh; Fin, Fur, and Feather; Wings to Go; E. J. Roberts; Woolworth's; Jerry's Place; Flying Fruit Fantasy; Boardwalk Fries; Maryland Barber School; Popeye's; Burger King; Sconecutter's; and Greenberg's Jewelry. These businesses helped make our perfect attendance awards "perfect."
Treat seniors better
From: Arthur Contarini
The reason for this letter has to do with the way the county Commission on Aging is falling apart, due to lack of support from the citizens of Anne Arundel, the county executive and our representatives.
We put them in office, and then they do nothing. They just forget about us. I was in politics as a young man, but now I start to see things that I don't like, especially over the last three years, as the commission has had four directors. We, the senior citizens of America, have done much to give you all a better country. We deserve to be better treated.
Please help us not to make the welfare rolls any bigger. It is your duty to help us.