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Keeps His Feet On The Ground
Folks, who among the highest ranking, well elected, not presently in election cycle, county officials would get out of bed in the middle if the night (5 degree temperature) put on boots and trek in the snow in search of a lost pet dog? Of course, Lance Benedict. The voters made an excellent choice in selecting this gentlemen who can reach for the stars, and keep his feet on the ground.
Do We Have A Voice?
The February 25, 2003 Susquehanna Town Council meeting went off without a hitch. But, only for the council members. The parking ban on West Main Street has been a thorn in their side for some time and they were determined to "get rid" of that thorn on that night.
Andy Whitehead and Andy Francis addressed the council very professionally and with extremely accurate documentation. In my opinion, some of the members seemed bored, maybe because they knew, in advance what the outcome was to be. Mr. Whitehead and Mr. Francis had a clear concern for this situation. They put in a great amount of research and personal time to come up with their discrepancies in this proposed amendment. In the end, Todd Glover verbally agreed to explore other options (looking into receiving a grant to widen the road) if Mr. Whitehead and Mr. Francis were willing to work with him. They agreed. Seems like progress? Well, there is more. The floor was opened.
"I wish to address the council as a parent." This is how I began my plea to vote against the ban. I continued to explain my feelings about imposing a parking ban on West Main Street. How would any parent fell about having a "raceway" opened up, just outside their front door. Further into my appeal, I admitted to being handicapped and that a two-block (uphill) walk to my house would be a hardship. A council member told me (prior to the meeting) that the borough did not require supplying a parking area for residents. Well, if that doesnt make you want to live here, surrounded by all these helpful folk? Other neighbors voiced about not being able to have friends or family visit. In addition, what about having any work done on your house. Where are the workers supposed to park? Still, the council listened.
Before closing, Mr. Whitehead requested to table the vote until other options could be explored. It appeared to me that Mr. Glover had nodded. The council then, very quickly voted 4-1 (thank you Mr. Member who voted no, nice try) to ban parking on West Main Street, from Fourth Avenue on out. HELLO! Was anyone else there except the council?
My husband had then been "caught up in the moment," stood up to leave and blurted out to the council, "Buy my house." He was told he was out of order. He continued to mumble loudly (as others that were there) his disappointment in the vote as he was leaving. During this time he was declared out of order, two more times (he was not aware of this at the time). And to clarify, there was not any "name calling" done to any council member.
Later that evening, a police officer was at our house to inform us that my husband was to apologize to the council at their next meeting, on March 11 for disrupting the meeting, or he will be arrested. My husband agreed, because he does admit he should not have let the vote trouble him that much.
All this being said, I will conclude with this. Council members, I wish to address "you" now. As my husband is being made to apologize to you for disrupting your meeting, I feel it only appropriate to ask you to apologize to the residents of West Main Street, for you have certainly disrupted their lives.
They Dont Want Change
In response to the letter written by Colin Connolly of New Milford in your February 26 issue regarding the ability of our county officials, I would like to comment. I am one of those retired executives that moved to Susquehanna County, which Mr. Connolly referenced. And I was a marketing executive with skills in management, marketing, and fundraising.
After relocating to this area I became involved with a local, nonprofit organization volunteering my time and knowledge to help obtain funding for their projects. After attending only a few meetings, I was asked to sit on the Board of Directors.
I put together a committee for fundraising and planned scheduled meetings to discuss ways to obtain the funding required. During these meetings it became obvious that the old, established locals didnt want to hear any new ideas. It doesnt take many comments like, "We tried that once and it doesnt work" or, "Thats a dumb idea, nobody will support it." It didnt take long for me to see where this was going and I began asking the wrong type of questions. As such, I was asked to resign my position on the board.
I have thought many times about running for the position of county commissioner but only have to think back to the experience mentioned above and I come to my senses. The people in Susquehanna like things just the way they are and dont desire any change for the better.
I believe I have some fresh ideas to be tried, but Im not willing to be abused for suggesting something different. So, Mr. Connolly, unless you can find someone who hasnt experienced how our residents will respond to radical change, I believe everything will remain "status quo."
EDITORS RESPONSE: Right on, Bill! We do need radical change; in both candidates AND the mind set of our voting public.
Newspapers In Education Week
EDITORS NOTE: Following are Letters To The Editor in celebration of Newspapers In Education week, March 3-9. The County Transcript accepts such letters all year long, but is happy to see such participation from area youth at this time of year. These letters are from sixth grade students at Susquehanna Community Elementary School (the only we have received so far).
Fix The Oakland Park
I think that we should fix the park in Oakland. That way, if someone was to go to the park they would have more stuff to do. More swings and more little kid, swing well baby swings would help. That way, when parents come down with their children they can do more stuff with them. They should also put new rides in, like a teeter-totter for the children. They should put in a new play set, so the little ones can come there more often. When children come now, they dont leave so happy; when they come to the park they are all smiles, but once they see the way the swings and slide are ruined they just want to go home. In the summer, my friends and I were thinking that they could put in a pool, so we wouldnt have to go to Windsor just to go swimming. There is a lot of room for a pool where that dirt is in the Oakland park. If they put in a pool, the people in Oakland will come to the park to enjoy themselves. The parents would be very happy to have new stuff in the park. These are my ideas to improve the Oakland park.
We Need A Pool
I think Susquehanna needs a town pool. There are many people that need a way to cool off. When Im downtown in the summer, I hear kids say, "We need a pool."
A town pool would provide new jobs for people. You would need lifeguards to protect people, cleaners to clean the pool, concession stand workers to feed hungry customers, and gate people to collect money. This increase in jobs could help the unemployed.
A town pool would also provide a new sport for the school. It would allow us to start a swim team. We could even have swim classes and water aerobics for people out of school.
A town pool would help kids socialize. It could be a place for kids to hang out and it would be a local meeting place to have fun.
After reading this, I hope you agree with me to have a town pool.
I would like to suggest "no war" with the US and Iraq. I would like this because my aunt and uncle are in the military service. I want them to live; I want to see them again. If they go to war they might die. I want them to live. If they die, their kids might have to live with fake parents, and, I also want to see them again at least one more time.
If we go to war, there is a 40% chance that I will die. I want my family to see me graduate from college. I want to have a family, I want to make money and be whatever I want to be. That is why I do not want the United States and Iraq to go to war!
How About A Skate Park
I think we should have a skate park in Susquehanna, because there is no place to skate. We cant skate or roller blade in the streets, because of the cars. We cant do anything in the parking lot either, or we will get in trouble with the cops. We had jumps by the bridge, but someone flattened them. If you open a skate park, there will be less kids getting in trouble. You could even open a skate park, or skating ring and make a profit out of it. There are some activities, but none to do with skating. You could start an after-school activity like skating, so there would be less kids on the streets. A lot of people have skates, but they have to travel all the way to Blue Ridge or Johnson City to speed skate. If our town doesnt have the money, you could have a fund-raiser. That is why I think we should have a skate park in our town.
We Need More Sports
I think that we need to have more sports. For example, we shouldnt have to play soccer with Blue Ridge; we should have our own team. I also think that we should have a girls fifth and sixth grade traveling basketball team. I feel that the boys are more privileged than the girls. I think that because there is a boys fifth and sixth grade traveling team. They also have football, which girls can play but do not really want to. There is another sport that I think we should have, tennis. I think we should have this because we already have tennis courts, but no one to teach us how to play tennis on them. Tennis is one of my favorite sports and that is why I want it. This is why I want a larger selection of sports.
A Four-Wheeler Track
I would like a four-wheeler track in Susquehanna. If we had a four-wheeler track, people would come to ride it. It could be fun, riding and racing circuits. Famous people from all over PA could race at the track.
Another reason I want a four-wheeler track is it could probably keep kids off the streets. The kids would stop riding four-wheelers on the streets and could hang out at the track, instead of the streets as well. I hope that we do build a four-wheeler track in Susquehanna someday.
Lets Get Uniforms
I think our school should get uniforms. I think, if our school got uniforms, nobody would get picked on because of the clothes they wear to school. I also think kids would not get in trouble for wearing inappropriate clothing, such as girls wearing belly shirts and guys wearing baggy pants. If we got uniforms, there would be no difference in what type of clothes people wear because they will all be wearing the same. I also think it would make people pay more attention in class, because nobody would be paying attention to peoples clothes, or children pulling up their pants in the middle of class creating a distraction to some people who want to learn. Teachers would not need to spend class time writing out referrals and sending students down to the principals office for wearing inappropriate clothing, because everyone will be wearing the same clothes. I also think we should get uniforms because they are not expensive. Parents should not complain about the price, they will just be spending money on a few uniforms and not a lot of money on different clothing throughout the school year. These are all my reasons why I think our school should get uniforms.
Hoping For Some Coaching
I would like to help the future Lady Sabers out by saying that the fifth and sixth grade girls should get a traveling team. Im not talking about getting the school involved in this; Im saying that we would appreciate it if someone out there would volunteer to take a coaching position and start an out-of-school girls basketball league. When you get into seventh grade and get to be on a traveling team, we are still perfecting basics that the girls we are playing perfected in fifth grade. The point Im getting at is that the chance of us winning a certain percentage more games, than the people who have played for two years more than us are slim to none.
If someone reaches out and helps, we could excel and start a career we appreciate. Being on a team, we could learn good sportsmanship and teamwork. We could learn that winning doesnt always matter and that you are the winner if you had a good learning experience and had fun! And for the people who plan on doing multiple sports, in high school, theyd get used to being coached. They would also learn how to obey and give all the respect deserved. It would also expand our social life by making new friends, younger and older. At this age, a lot of girls arent getting the exercise they need.
I know that a lot of girls in my grade would appreciate it if someone out there would volunteer to help us through our minor crisis. I dont know if you would get paid, but just knowing that you have made a difference in our lives should be considered payment. It would also help out the future Lady Sabers, a lot. Whoever is reading this, we need your help. Please speak up and do a kind and thoughtful deed, for the fifth and sixth graded Lady Sabers to be.
Hannah J. Price
TO THE EDITOR POLICY
Thank you, Susquehanna County Transcript
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