Summertime, and the living is easy. And a time for snapshot views of things happening in Carroll County. It's a time to express those thumbs up and thumbs down to people and activities at home.
A thumbs up to:
* Prestige Cablevision for finally realizing that "one size does not fit all" and offering more than one viewing package to county cable consumers. Maybe it was the threat of competition that put the fire under Prestige. Whatever it was, thank goodness. Now, we get Home Team Sports. Love those O's, even when they're not winning.
* The 100,000-plus county citizens who do not live in any municipality, have no governmental agency mandating recycling and still continue to recycle. Keep up the good work.
* More than 600 exhibitors, 400 volunteers and 10,000 visitors who made the recent 4-H/Future Farmers of America Carroll County Fair so successful. More than $111,000 was raised at the livestock auction. These 4-H and FFA members, their families and supporters are what will continue to make Carroll County COUNTRY. To the supporters and successful bidders: Your support is invaluable.
* The Carroll County commissioners, who publicly acknowledged that they were collectively deceived by the county Board of Education during this year's budget talks. Next year, dig a little deeper, listen a little more closely and hold your ground. The expression is, "What part of 'no' don't you understand?"
Thumbs down to:
* The same commissioners. Just how many more tasks are you planning to give to Max Bair and expect the man to continue to perform at top efficiency?
The county's economic development requires a full-time department head, not a staff person who receives reports to pass on to commissioners. During tight economic times, competition fornew business is fierce and the other 23 jurisdictions in Maryland have not let up in their pursuit.
How can Carroll County do less? You need only to lose one contract and the salary of the director becomes a minor point, considering the lost tax base. Come on, commissioners -- give economic development the full attention it needs and deserves. Don't lay this added task on a current staffer and then complain when something falls through a crack.
* The Roscoe Bartlett campaign staff for making seemingly erroneous and misleading statements regarding Thomas Hattery, the Democratic nominee for Congress in the 6th District. Here is another example of people making comments and criticizing what they do not know and understand. This will not be the last you will hear about this exchange.
* The continuing discussion of a historical district in Westminster. I am against this proposal. It will place an additional financial hardship on homeowners and business owners who can least afford additional regulations.
* Hayden Trash Removal. The company distributed literature explaining their recycling plan in a bag marked "recyclable plastic No. 4." They don't accept No. 4 items. Where do we recycle that bag?
* The rude and careless drivers on county roads. Slow down, stop running red lights and watch when you are turning right on red. If you are in such a hurry, leave five minutes earlier. Get there alive and allow other drivers to get to their destinations in one piece.