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In The OCTOBER 6TH ISSUE Of The County Transcript

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Issue Home September 28, 2004 Site Home

Letters to the Editor Policy

Cursed My Stupidity

On Wednesday, September 8, while en route to Cicero, NY, we stopped at Gibson exit 219 for a coffee and to make a cell phone call. Later, while proceeding North on I-81, I discovered I’d left my wallet on the car hood. A quick return proved fruitless and I spent the rest of the journey cursing my stupidity and wondering how much worse it could get before credit cards could be canceled and all the important cards (license, SS, Medicare, etc.) could be replaced.

Back home later that evening, a blinking answering machine greeted me with news of a miracle. A return call to Marty Reed, of Great Bend (a 17-year PENNDOT highway employee), confirmed he had indeed found the wallet along the entry ramp onto I-81. This septuagenarian’s faith in humanity was instantly restored and after speaking at length with Marty, a cynical old guy now has much more faith in this country’s future. I received the wallet today, via registered mail.

PENNDOT workers, as any motorist knows (but will not admit) are oft times criticized when highway repair, replacement, snow plowing, etc. is in progress but are never thanked when the same motorist gets to enjoy the new, improved and safer roadways.

I would like to take this opportunity to publicly thank Marty for the conscientious job he has performed for 17 years and personally, for his honesty.


Robert "Jack" Kline

Pottsville, PA

Just Petty Criminals

This is for the people who are stealing all the political signs in town that do not endorse their candidate. You are nothing more than petty criminals.


Therese Cooke

Montrose, PA

Gestapo Mentality My Foot

In response to a Letter To The Editor in the September 22 issue of the County Transcript.

First off, there are no (Susquehanna) police officers on duty in the middle of the day, except for one day out of the week. When they do come on duty, at 8 p.m., they normally have paperwork that they have to get done before they even think about going on patrol. By the time they go on patrol, it’s (about) 9 p.m. If my memory serves me correct, the noise ordinance is at 10:30 p.m. All loud music or noise of any sort should be toned down by then.

In regard to the police doing their job illegally, that’s just a farce. As much as I’ve seen around town and of the police, everything they do is legal.

About all those illegal situations going on in this town - drugs, alcohol, etc. - the police are taking care of these issues. They haven’t solved it all, but they are getting close.

Instead of complaining about the police not getting to these people, call the police and let them know where this activity is going on. Use some common sense and stop blurting things out that don’t make any sense.

The only thing I can say to these people who think they (police) aren’t doing their job is to get a life and butt out. It is my belief that people should find better things to do with their time than complain about the police department.

To the police force of Susquehanna Borough, you are doing a great job and keep up the terrific work!


Kyle Wolf

Susquehanna, PA

Refusing To Consider

Thompson Township Supervisors, in my opinion have failed to consider that the majority of the residents in Thompson Township do not favor this (Erk Road closing) action.

They (supervisors) have been presented with reasonable alternatives, but refuse to consider them.

Our back roads are very important to us. We use them for access to hunting, fishing or just taking a Sunday ride with friends and family to view wildlife, the fall color season and all the beauty of our area.

Many people come here just for these reasons. They contribute to many of the small businesses in this area (which we really need)!

Residents of our area need to pay attention to this matter and express their concern.

Your road may be next!


Joan Slocum

Susquehanna, PA

An Example Of Misrepresentation

Does your vote or opinion mean anything?

On September 7 we attended the meeting of Thompson Township and witnessed one of the best examples of misrepresentation we have ever seen in local government. Our elected officials graciously listened to opinions from taxpayers, both against vacating the Erk Road and for the vacating of the said road. This was followed by a vote to determine how many taxpayers were opposed to the vacating of the Erk Road and those taxpayers who felt the road should be vacated. The vote was 34 opposed and 8 (4 of whom are employed by the township) for the closure. Letters received from many taxpayers (who were unable to attend the meeting that evening) were also presented to the supervisors stating opposition to the vacating. Then to everyone’s amazement, one supervisor opened his folder and proceeded to read a typed proposal to vacate the Erk Road, with no regard to the opinions of the majority of taxpayers. Due to no second to the motion, the remaining supervisors made a motion, seconded it, to close the Erk Road temporarily.

Why after 20+ years of no maintenance (except for 2001) do our elected officials feel it necessary to close this road, instead of continuing to collect liquid fuels money until the Starrucca Borough bridge situation can be resolved?

Closure of this road prevents the local utility company from accessing power lines at the end of the road and prevents Boy Scouts from camping at a site they have used for over 30 years; not to mention the problem landowners will have in accessing their properties. How will the closure of this road affect all those nature lovers who use Rails and Trails, as well as those who enjoy stopping at Buck’s Falls? They will now have to cross private property.

Why was this road closed when we understand that Thompson Township maintains a road that leads to a driveway of a residence in Ararat Township, when no other homes are on this road?

Is closure of the Erk Road going to set a precedence for other township roads? Will yours be next?


Robert and Lillian Buck

Thompson Township

P. Jay Is The Spin Doctor

In the September 15, 2004 Transcript, I read an article by P. Jay Amadio concerning a ($1,000,000.00 plus) grant nixed by Commissioners Kelly and Warren that I found disturbing. Because I have faith in Commissioner Loomis’ abilities for researching grants, I decided to do a little investigation of my own. I found that the truth and facts are woefully lacking in Mr. Amadio’s well written albeit fairy tail of journalism. Privately, Mr. Amadio makes no bones about being happy a major grant, for the Montrose and New Milford area, was squashed because its main benefits were for only those communities. Ms. Kelly’s ties to the Susquehanna borough being what they are, I fear her purpose is basically identical, but Ms. Warren must know how much the grant would have helped the New Milford borough. Madams Kelly and Warren seem to have forgotten that benefits to the county and the citizens who elected them should be foremost in their actions. Let’s have a little bit of truth in this edition at least.

First, the grant was an opportunity to do a real service to all the residents of Susquehanna County. Any time such a large sum, consisting of taxes returned and distributed to our county by the state is dispensed, our businesses profit and local jobs are produced. Families benefit ascetically and financially. Goods are purchased from local merchants. County taxes can be reduced. Most of the work to be financed was for parks and the remainder for streets and lighting. I might emphasize lighting, as the green in Montrose is an electrical nightmare. Ask any of the many vendors who, during the blueberry festival, complained about the breakers constantly kicking out. Not a very good advertisement for tourism when vendors complain around customers of the county’s inadequacies. That very green, which Mr. Amadio calls the "improvements around the courthouse complex," is the home of the county Soldier’s Monument as well as many county and charitable functions. Secondly, Commissioner Loomis presented all the information to Commissioners Kelly and Warren that he had available to him including all of the e-mails leading to that day. This tells me that they were privy to all the necessary information. Quite frankly, this should have been a no-brainer to the madams, and Mr. Loomis had reason to be upset.

A summary of what I learned in just thirty minutes investigation, and a few days of verification, tells a much different tale than Mr. Amadio’s article. This was a new grant being offered for the first time. The fees associated with the grant would have been $5 to $8 thousand with half paid by the townships. Priority for awarding the grant is based on points (more population, more points) and the number of grants approved. Because the architectural study was already completed, Susquehanna County would have been the first and only applicant (and thereby a shoe in) in the first round for the grant. The second round has just been finished and 5 of 7 applicants are receiving the $4,5000,000.00 being awarded. Seven applicants in the second round! This is not close to the 278 reported by Mr. Amadio.

Commissioner Loomis was on top of an opportunity squandered by Commissioners Kelly and Warren due to a lack of vision and leadership and consequently lauded and spun by a reporter without the ability to put the county ahead of his own particular spot of real estate, and who’s loyalty to Ms. Kelly and his cousin Ms. Warren seems to have clouded his judgment. I wonder if he would have the same sentiments had the grant benefited Forest City. The Commissioners were elected to represent the entire county and should remember that even a grant benefiting part of the county benefits all.

At the end of the meeting even the lead individual for Northern Tier advised the commissioners to run with it. Remember the saying, "A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush?" It was told to me that Ms. Kelly has since stated that the Housing Authority would provide the same services as the grant without cost. I would like to know when, since past experience proves them to be exceedingly slow. Will it be in the next ten years? Will it be in my lifetime? Will it be sometime in this century? Have Madams Kelly and Warren even applied for it? Hello! Hello!


Fred B. Baker, II

Meshoppen, PA

Can You Believe It

Today I attended the Susquehanna County Commissioners meeting. At the meeting it was announced that several Union contracts for the next four years have been finalized and are ready for commissioners to sign off. Several key items were announced; one being full health benefits for the next four years and another was a 4% salary increase for this year.

We were told that the health benefit cost per employee is $1000.00 per month. The commissioner said that the Union would not discuss any employee contribution. Duh, why would they volunteer anything? A benefit package of paid health insurance, vacation, thirteen paid holidays, plus sick and personal days probably puts the county head and shoulder above any local business or industry.

As if the health benefit isn’t enough, there is a 4% increase on top of it. One can only ask, where are we going except toward higher taxes. (Good news for those of us on SS and retirees, right?)

It’s time to make it known that we can no longer afford the three commissioners we have. Three commissioners were replaced because the majority of voters felt they were being short changed. To date, I haven’t seen anything improved with these three. The voters need someone to look after our interest, instead of their own.


Tom Jurista

Silver Lake Township


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