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Mistakes Are Learning Mechanism
Does P.J. Amadio really think that one rejected bale of material is an indication of ongoing quality control problems at the Susquehanna County Recycling Center? The agency, company, corporation, business, or governmental department does not exist that hasnt made mistakes. True, mistakes do cost money. But mistakes are also a learning mechanism. Instead of intimating that mistakes in the recycling center are the primary reason for the net cost of the operation, Amadio should have been pleased to note that the error, unfortunate though it was, ended up costing only a couple of hundred dollars a small price to pay for a good lesson learned.
The county has spent several hundred dollars many times over for various seminars, workshops, conferences and the like. Theres not a doubt in my mind that on more than one occasion the attendee(s) came back knowing no more than they did before the event. That, my friends, is a true waste of our tax dollars. But we would never suggest that we no longer participate in those activities when theyre made available to us. We spend the money and hope that it will prove to be worthwhile for the attendees.
Mr. Amadio also seems to object to the way payment of the return shipment was handled. He seems to be unaware of the very common business practice of applying accounts payable against accounts receivable and vice versa, commonly referred to as a "contra". If company A owes company B $200, and company B owes company A $300, the accounts are settled by having company B send a payment of $100 to company A, thus clearing the accounts payable and receivable for both companies. This is done in virtually every business that exists, and it is a perfectly legitimate way of handling and accounting for such a situation. The instructions in Ms. Andersons memo were well within the confines of proper accounting methods.
Additionally, I wish to make it very clear to your readers that the records of the Recycling Center are available for anyone to look at. The Commissioners are kept informed routinely about everything that goes on at the Center. Nothing is being hidden. So, although Mr. Amadio seems to feel that he uncovered some strange goings-on that were being hidden by the personnel at the Center, nothing could be further from the truth.
I really hate to respond to Amadios kind of "reporting", because it is simply yellow journalism and should not be taken at face value by anyone. But I realize that there are some people who believe everything that they read in a newspaper. I, for one, feel that the citizens of Susquehanna County deserve better than the innuendoes and rumors that are touted in Amadios column as truth.
Dorothy B. McPherson
Not Soon Forgotten
On behalf of all the parents and children of the Susquehanna Junior Sabers "C" Team, there are many Thank Yous that need to go out to the many organizations and people that helped make our Superbowl game possible. We would like to say "thank you" to all those who made programs, drove buses, gave support, offered use of practice facilities, donated money and products, welcomed us home, made banners, and last but never least our own boys and girls who without determination and heart would have never made your parents as proud as we all are of you! We had a fabulous season and finished #1 in our division, but without all of you and more it would have been only a dream.
So THANK YOU, one and all for making this a memory not soon to be forgotten by all the children involved.
All the parents and children of the Susquehanna Jr. Sabers "C" Team
Consistency On Our Roads
Recently I went to court because a young person was driving fast on our dirt road, hit my dog and almost hit me. The judge said that the speed limit on a dirt road was 55 and it was my fault that the dog leash had gotten out of my hand. I live on a residential dirt road and am constantly concerned about the people driving too fast when their are kids out playing or riding their bikes. I think it is pretty sad that the speed limit in a business district, that is normally frequented by adults, is lower than in the area where kids are playing.
With more and more families moving into rural areas that are heavily wooded and have winding dirt roads, you would think that the posted speed limit would be irrelevant and that the drivers would take responsibility to slow down when they know there are children and pets in the area.
I understand that roads were not designed for kids to play in. However, we do not have the luxury of sidewalks in many areas of this county and the only place for a child to ride their bike at home is on the side of the road. The county has made sure that we all understand that bicycles are allowed on the highway and yet highways were not designed for adults to play on.
Unfortunately, based on the responses from the judge, nothing will be done to solve this problem, which will increasingly get worse as more and more people venture into the woods. It is sad to think that safety is a legislative issue and not a moral, community issue.
I did, however, decide to take a little drive to verify the speed limits in other residential areas. Most of the residential areas, where the roads are paved and easier to stop on, all have 35 mph speed limits. It almost seems as if the only residential areas that have 55 mph speed limits are the ones that are dirt roads where it is, in fact, harder to stop.
So, if "The idea is to establish consistency among communities," then I would request to make all residential areas, whether paved or unpaved, incorporated or unincorporated, have 20 mph speed limits. As for the driver of the car that hit my dog, if there is any justice, the next time that driver rounds a corner going too fast on a dirt road it will be a fallen tree that he encounters and not a helpless animal. May the lesson be learned by all - slow down and pay attention (next time it may be a child).
Tamsen (Wanser) Jones
It Wasnt Accurage
This is in response to the column by P.J. Amadio that ran in the Susquehanna County Transcripts November 8 edition, "Recycling Program Needs Scrutinizing." We would like to take this opportunity to correct the inaccuracies:
1. Mr. Amadio wrote, "The recycling program costs the county about $80,000 a year." Fact: This figure is the combined cost of the Recycling Center and the Solid waste Department, two separate departments with separate costs. Last year, the solid waste department costs were $26,000 and the Recycling Center cost was $61,000 to process 1,300 tons of recyclables. Also, it should be noted that Mr. Amadios figure of $80,000 for 1 mill is also inaccurate. One county mill is equivalent to $700,000.
2. He questions why one load of paper was rejected. If he had called the Recycling Center, he would have been told why. Fact: This particular load of paper was the first load of paper to be shipped right after the holidays, a time when the mills are returning from a holiday shutdown, are slow, and tend to be more selective of the product. Fact: The recycling center, since its opening in 1998, has had only two rejected shipments. The first was the very first shipment ever processed at the recycling center. The second one occurred in difficult market times. To date, the recycling center has shipped 219 loads, equivalent to 6 million pounds of material, with only two loads rejected.
3. Mr. Amadio says, "It costs the recycling center $300 to transport a load of recyclables to a Syracuse buyer." Fact: This Syracuse, New York buyer, NexCycle Resources, only takes our glass. It is the only item that the Recycling Center must pay to have transported because we store it in a 30-yard container that must be transported. The new glass storage bins, part of our expansion project, will address this. Mills that purchase glass will be able to send their own trucks to pick up our glass at their cost. Glass prices have recently reached an all time low, but markets fluctuate.
We question why Mr. Amadio did not contact the recycling center to get the correct information. The first lesson taught in Journalism 101 is that you interview both sides of the story. The Recycling Center staff and the Recycling and Solid Waste Advisory Panel (RESWAP) invite Mr. Amadio to visit the Recycling Center anytime and get his information directly from the source. All records at the Recycling Center (except for personnel files) are open to the public.
William Zick, Recycling Director
It Doesnt Fly Here
This is an open letter to all users of Video King in Susquehanna and Larry, owner of Video King.
Its been awhile since something weird, different, or just unlawful has been going on in Video King.
Too many times, I or my wife were charged late fees when, I know, there were no late charges due. For the longest time, no receipts were given at time of purchase. Think about it! Did this happen to you? Were there times you were sure you werent late, but like a sap you paid the late charges.
And now, to add insult to injury, Larry, owner of Video Kings in Binghamton as well, has decided to raise the rental fee to over $4 a tape. I guess Larry figures if itll fly in Binghamton, itll fly in Susquehanna.
To rub more salt into the wound, the last time I was in Video King, I decided to buy a tape for my family to watch together Saturday night. Did you know that Larry charges $5 over what some other rental stores charge for a new tape? And, "please," lets not hear that we should give Larry a break because hes a small business man, because hes not. Over $4 a tape rental and $5 extra for a new tape is just too much!
I hope other people feel the same way I do. I fully expect Larry to have (and give) many B.S. answers for all of the above.
PS: We didnt need your smut room, either.
TO THE EDITOR POLICY
Thank you, Susquehanna County Transcript
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