'I am Historic Ellicott City,' and not wantedI am...

LETTERS

January 14, 1996

'I am Historic Ellicott City,' and not wanted

I am "Historic Ellicott City."

I was born in a house built in the 1800s in "Historic Ellicott City."

I was a member of the Class of 1939, the last class to graduate from Ellicott City High School in "Historic Ellicott City" during my school years.

I worked for the merchants of "Historic Ellicott City" during my school years.

I spent 25 years working at the Howard County Courthouse in "Historic Ellicott City."

I have lived for 73 years in "Historic Ellicott City."

Now, Ellicott City businessmen and property owners say I could "disrupt the decor of the district and hurt local business."

I have paid taxes and been a productive citizen of "Historic Ellicott City" for 73 years. Now the merchants and businessmen want my dollars, but do not want my friends and I to live in "Historic Ellicott City."

To merchants and businessmen, senior citizens have been the foundation of "Historic Ellicott City," and should be welcome to live there. Please support the effort to construct apartments for 12 senior citizens on Hamilton Street in "Historic Ellicott City."

Rosa Lee Kerr

Ellicott City

Rouse Co. must be part of the solution

All the ballots are in and it is clear that the campaign in Wilde Lake to change the village covenants to allow one-person, one-vote did not succeed. The large majority of votes cast were in favor of the change, but despite the efforts of many volunteers, not enough total votes were cast to fulfill the requirements. The campaign's objectives are sound: to allow more democratic, participatory elections by allowing all registered voters per household to vote, not just one. The current voting restrictions are contrary to the voting freedoms we possess in federal, state and municipal elections. Such restrictions are, however, part of many village covenants in Columbia.

It's hardly the sort of thing one would expect in a "model community." Even James Rouse, Columbia's founder, has admitted that it was a mistake.

Wilde Lake's campaign had 2 1/2 strikes against it before it even started. Under the covenants, it would have taken a positive vote of 90 percent of the property owners to change the covenants.

Columbia's developer, The Rouse Co., originally wrote the covenants and made them essentially impossible to change. Since the Rouse Co. has been a large part of the problem, it's clear that it has an obligation to find a way to be part of the solution.

Alex Hekimian

Columbia

The writer is president of the Alliance for a Better Columbia.

Residence shouldn't figure in school race

I would like to complement Kevin Thomas on his comments in The Sun on Dec. 31 regarding the qualifications of the current candidates in the race for a position on the Howard County school board. As a candidate, I would like to clarify some of his comments regarding my background.

While I began teaching in Howard County in 1959 and did retire this past June, I have not been teaching in the county for the entire 36 years, since I took 10 years off to raise a family.

As Mr. Thomas stated, school board Chairwoman Susan Cook should be replaced by a candidate who shows strong leadership potential. He went on to imply that teaching is a leadership position. I wholeheartedly agree that teaching is a leadership position. However, besides my classroom leadership I have other areas of educational leadership to offer.

For the past five years, I was the Social Studies department chairwoman. I recently served two terms on the negotiations team to finalize the master agreement between the Board of Education and the Howard County Education Association, which represents all certified professional employees of the Howard County Public Schools. I served as the Oakland Mills Middle School faculty representative for the Superintendent Area Meetings held at the Howard County Board of Education. I was the Centennial Lane Elementary School representative to the Howard County Teachers Association. From 1989 to 1993, I was the educational representative for the Howard County Department of Education book review committee. I was a member of the 1978 Ad Hoc Committee for the Ten-Year Study of the Howard County Middle School program. In addition, when my children were in elementary school, I served as the PTA County Council representative for the Atholton Elementary School PTA.

As Mr. Thomas pointed out, "A major factor in the coming race may be geography, since candidates from Columbia somehow don't fare as well."

While I am listed as living in Columbia, I consider myself a resident of Howard County with the interest of best serving the entire county.

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