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Letters to the Editor Policy

It Is A Train Wreck

As we predicted a few months ago, the decline in prices paid to dairy farmers is taking place. Actually, everyone should have seen the train coming at us. Some dairy farmers have actually seen a partial payment for March’s milk in the $16.00 per cwt range.

The Class I price for milk (milk used for bottling purposes) reached $25.16 per cwt for September, 2007 milk. The February, 2008 price for Class I milk is $19.95 per cwt. This is a $5.21 per cwt drop to our dairy farmers.

The Pennsylvania Milk Marketing Board reduced the minimum price for a gallon of whole milk in the stores in northeastern Pennsylvania, down to $3.47 per gallon. The entire reduction is felt by the local dairy farmers.

An even bigger hit has been taken by the milk used for butter and powdered milk. The value of this milk was $21.87 per cwt in August, 2007. The February, 2008 price has been announced at $14.67 per cwt. This is a decline of $7.27 per cwt. All of this will mean a substantial drop in actual prices paid to dairy farmers.

Yes, everyone should have seen the train coming!

All of this is happening when cost of production at the farm level is escalating at an alarming rate.

You can talk all you want about dairy farmers having to get more profit per cow. That may help, but it is certainly not the answer. Something must be done and done soon.

Last year, Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) and Senator Robert Casey (D-PA) introduced S1722. This bill must be reexamined very quickly. Dairy farmers are now forced into a position where their price must be enough to cover the national average cost of production – plus!

I would hope that all who read this editorial will immediately contact their senators and representatives in Washington, D.C. and urge them to take immediate action.

No one can be sleeping at the switch on this one! Dairy farmers and concerned citizens must get in contact with the elected officials in Washington and not urge but demand necessary action be taken to preserve our family dairy farms.

If you fall asleep at the switch on this one, there won’t even be another train coming.

Pro Ag can be reached at (570) 833–5776 or by e-mail at proagorg@yahoo.com.


Arden Tewksbury

Manager, Pro Ag

Meshoppen, PA

Time To Stand Together

I find myself becoming more and more alarmed at the outrageous allegations that are being spread around like "Gospel according to Rescue." I also wonder if it isn't against some type of municipal code for an elected official to publicly state that they are planning to join the club without any public hearing and public vote.

I also wonder when the quarry operators, workers, truckers, and all affiliated to the mining industry are going to get together and form a group that will work to protect the mining industry, instead of just sitting back and letting this well organized group of Robin Hoods dictate how and where you can mine. And not in my back yard. Back in the day they were called unions. It may not necessarily be the way for all miners to go, but you guys can no longer try to ignore what is happening right in your own back yard. This bunch of environmentalists do have a vision, ambition, dedication, and agenda.

They also have had years to become refined, and entrenched, without anyone really paying attention. The public persona of this group almost seems so irreproachable. In the beginning, the ideals of protecting wildlife and land appeared to be beneficial to all. Now the pendulum is swinging too far to the right, or left, that it now exposes the snakes in the grass.

Benjamin Franklin said," We must indeed, all hang together or, most assuredly, we shall all hang separately."

I researched a piece on French farmers who protested the big and not beneficial changes that were being sought to the "Common Agricultural Policy." These farmers realized how these changes would not only put them out of business, but they would not be able to produce the food for the people. They banded together and on November 15, 2005 they all got into their farm tractors and rode to the EU Headquarters in Paris to protest these potential changes. The people were then made to pay attention, upon realizing their bellies would be the empty ones.

I can only imagine the sight of all the quarry affiliates, coming together, in skid-steers, backhoes, excavators, stone, concrete and service trucks to Montrose, to peacefully exercise the right to protest and to get the attention of the people, who may not realize just how important the mining industry is here. What a parade that will be. I will be on the sidewalk, cheering these men on, waving my American flag. I hope you quarry folks will seriously get a plan, organize an event, pay for your parade permits, and show up! Believe me when I say this, if you think this is crazy talk, sit and do nothing. Be warned though, in five years the regulations will be so out of control, there will be no mining in Susquehanna County.

I hope that next week it can be announced to the public where and when the first meeting of the concerned miners will take place. There is a lot of misinformed and uninformed people. Don't be one of them.


Cynthia Allen

Summersville, PA

Letters To The Editor MUST BE SIGNED. They MUST INCLUDE a phone number for "daytime" contact. Letters MUST BE CONFIRMED VERBALLY with the author, before printing. Letters should be as concise as possible, to keep both Readers' and Editors' interest alike. Your opinions are important to us, but you must follow these guidelines to help assure their publishing.

Thank you, Susquehanna County Transcript

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