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Inflicting Suffering On Nursing-Home CareMy mother had...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Inflicting Suffering On Nursing-Home Care

My mother had brain surgery almost four years ago. While recovering in the hospital, the Social Services department contacted me and said she should be placed in a nursing home.

Because she was a perfectly functioning 82-year-old when she was admitted to the hospital, we thought that she would get better and we decided to take her home. Approximately 16 months later with deteriorating health and now needing total bed care, we as a family made a difficult decision that she did need nursing home care.

Social Services also agreed that she needed placement and could be helped. She went in as a private pay patient until all of her money was gone except for the sums that you are allowed to keep for "funeral expenses." Medical assistance then started contributing to her care with her monthly pensions (a federal pension from my father plus her Social Security) added to it.

I was notified last week by the administrator of her nursing home that due to cuts in medical assistance after Nov. 1, my mother will be evicted from her facility. Because she receives more than $1,055 per month of pension, she will no longer be eligible for the care which she so desperately needs. The most asinine part of this new regulation is that some other medical assisted patient will probably come in to take her place who can contribute less toward their care than she! . . .

Now at age 86, Mom has not been out of bed for over three years. She is the only truly bed-bound person in her home. She is never moved because her skin tears at the slightest pressure and bleeds. She is totally incontinent, almost blind, is fed at times with a feeding syringe due to a choking problem, has severe dementia and is in a fetal position. She needs professional help with feeding, changing and bathing, which we are not trained to do. . . . One needs only to go into these facilities to see these people to know that they are not just case numbers but individuals with special needs and medical treatment. . . . Something must be done now to keep them where they are. It is a disgrace to our government to pick on these old people who have nothing left in their lives but the loving and professional care given to them at these facilities.

Harriet W. Bode

Jarrettsville

More Shopping? Who Needs It?

Security Management Corp. is proposing to build an over 150,000-square-foot shopping center at the intersection of Route and Brierhill Drive. This center would be similar to Bel Air Plaza in that it would be approximately the same size, "L" shaped in design and anchored by a "major" food chain, with a fast-food restaurant in the forefront.

Other developers attempted to build a large shopping center just up the road at Routes 543 and 22 but were told to downsize the project due to major traffic problems . . .

I don't see how this location, a few hundred yards closer to Bel Air, is any different. My house faces Route 22 and I see daily how horrendous traffic is during rush hour or any special events; cars were backed up into Bel Air when the Big M had its anniversary event recently, a distance of over 4 miles. The state has been quoted as saying that Route 22 will not be widened until late 1995, if funding is even available . . .

The zoning appeal has been rescheduled for 7 p.m. Oct. 26 at the court house . . . Although this was advertised, it seems very few residents were made aware of the proposed center. It seems the town of Bel Air was not "officially" notified of this appeal action. Anyone using Route 22 during rush hour, living in the immediate vicinity, or living on Ring Factory and McPhail roads will be affected by this proposed shopping center and should attend the upcoming zoning appeal.

As a resident of Harford County, I can't conceive of why our elected officials are continuing to let shopping centers be built with such a high retail vacancy rate in the county. We don't need nor do we want another shopping center in this area.

John Baranoski

Bel Air

Perot's Principles

Will you vote for one of the good old boys from your favorite party for president?

How many more of your friends, family and neighbors will lose their jobs before you decide to make your voice heard and your vote count?

Washington thinks free trade will cure our ills. It's free all right.

Take a look around you. Bethlehem Steel Corp. at one time employed 30,000 people. Now the mills are almost silent.

The good old boys in Washington vote themselves big raises in the middle of the night and will get $2 million pension and retirement plans. They are also receiving large donations from PACs. Who do you think is getting their attention? . . .

Let's make our government for the people and of the people again. I love my country and I especially do not want any government employee influenced by a foreign lobby.

It's time for the good old boys to move over. Ross Perot may have made you mad for stepping back to see what would happen in his absence, but he is back. He has shown us the facts and figures. Has your party or candidate been this truthful? Don't ignore it and hope it will go away. Show Washington we are mad as hell and won't take it anymore. . . . We are now in the process of starting a third party to promote and carry on the ideas and principles of H. Ross Perot. . . . This movement is now active in 23 states and well established in Montgomery and Howard counties.

If you are interested and would like more information, please write: The Patriot Party of Harford County, P.O. Box 343, Fallston, MD, 21047

Shirley J. Leard

Fallston

For' Question 6

A referendum on the Nov. 3 ballot will determine whether or not abortion will remain legal in Maryland. Voter turnout is crucial to the outcome of this referendum. We cannot assume it will pass easily; other referendums in other states have squeaked by due to poor voter turnout.

I will vote for this referendum because I believe every child should be a wanted child. I believe a woman's reproductive choices should only be limited by her own desires, abilities, health and finances, not by law.

I believe the quality of life available to humans is one of the most important issues confronting us today. In an ideal society, human beings would realize the miraculous and weighty possibility of bringing another human being into this world as a result of engaging in sex. In an ideal world, we would have a method of birth control that is both 100 percent effective and safe. Until these things come to pass, I believe we must preserve the right of women and men to choose under what circumstances they will bring another human into our society.

If you are pro-choice, please vote for the abortion referendum on Nov. 3.

Kim Hewitt

Bel Air

Vote To Save Farmland

Next month, the electorate of Harford County will be going to the polls to exercise their right to vote. There is a local issue that the electorate needs to pay attention to -- Question A.

A vote for Question A will amend the county charter to allow the county to make installment payments for farm land preservation under the proposed Purchase of Development Rights program. With the near extinction of the state agricultural preservation program funds, we need to establish a local program. To make lump sum payments for development rights on farm land is a fiscal impossibility at the local level. We are losing approximately 3,000 acres of agricultural land to develo0pment each year (approximately 96, 000 acres remaining). Without alternatives, the end result is inevitable. While the issue of real estate transfer tax is included in the ballot question language to pay for the bonds, the actual funding for the PDR program must be enacted through the County Council.

The tax is not the issue at hand. While it is related to the recently conceived rural plan (which will shortly be re-introduced to the County Council in amended form), it is not mutually dependent on it. To better manage the specter of urban sprawl, we, the voters, must give Harford County government the ability to purchase development rights.

On behalf of the board of directors and the general membership of the Community Coalition of Harford County, we urge the electorate to cast a vote for Question A.

Bruce Wells

The writer is president of the Community Coalition of Harford County.

I am urging everyone to vote for Question A in the upcoming election. Question A amends the County Charter to allow the county to pay farmers for their development rights in annual, and unequal payments. Currently, payments for development rights would have to be made in equal amounts. All Question Awill do is allow unequal payments. After passage of Question A, the County Council will consider the funding mechanism.

Since I moved to Magnolia in 1966, we have lost 50,000 acres of farmland in Harford County.

Preserving farmland does more than just preserve the rural character of our county. Farming is an existing industry that we should protect and provideincentives to, just like any other industry. Our farming industry prpduces $25 million in agricultural products each year. with a good possibility of that increasing if we provide the right incentives through the Rural Plan, which will be reintroduced soon. Meanwhile, we can do our part by casting a vote for Question A.

Bob Dillion

Magnolia

OC The writer is president of the Joppa-Magnolia Civic Association

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