Thanks for aid to research shipyard's roots
The Steward Colonial Shipyard Foundation would like to publicly express our sincere appreciation to Anne Arundel County and County Executive John G. Gary for their generous grant of $25,000 to our foundation.
In 1991, the remains of an 18th-century colonial shipyard was discovered at the headwaters of the West River. This site played a critical role in the development of our colonial history and in Maryland's participation in the Revolutionary War.
Archaeological investigation of the shipyard will add significantly to our knowledge of Anne Arundel County culture and heritage.
Our foundation was created to further this investigation, while providing an educational opportunity for students and volunteers.
Thanks to the county grant, we have begun a number of important projects that will forward these goals.
Mr. Gary has provided significant moral and monetary support for our efforts. We are thankful and appreciate his enthusiasm and advocacy for the preservation of this most important piece of our county's heritage.
The writer is founder of Steward Colonial Shipyard Foundation, Inc.
Councilman arrogant in views on bypass
According to the April 19 article "Project will ease traffic on busy road," Anne Arundel County Councilman Thomas W. Redmond Sr. stated that the proposed Mountain Road "bypass is a done deal."
His attitude, despite the apparent objection of two-thirds of the residents of the Mountain Road peninsula to the bypass, is insulting to all of us who have lived here for any length of time. (Mr. Redmond, incidently, does not live on the peninsula.)
The proposed road plans, as displayed at prior public meetings, do not relieve traffic east of North Shore Drive. In fact, it appears to stop there solely as a means of providing access for the development of the Loopers property.
We hope that the arrogance exhibited by Mr. Redmond toward his constituents concerning the proposed Mountain Road bypass will be amply rewarded in the next election.
Robert H. Cole
Pasadena Horse industry a selfish breed
Robert Lillis' letter ("Horse industry aid not a millionaire bailout," April 12) and his unfair assessment of Del. John R. Leopold is another example of the horse industry's selfishness.
What other sport has tremendous tax breaks, legal wagering, off-track betting, simulcasting and still wants more?
Remember, the horse industry is not just about horse-racing. Virginia had a booming horse business for decades without a track.
Mr. Lillis and the others could still enjoy farming and working with horses even if every track closed tomorrow. It would be a billion-dollar-a-year export industry.
According to the Biloxi Sun Herald, it takes 15 years for pari-mutuel wagerers to hit rock bottom financially, and video gamblers just one to three years.
The Harvard Study shows that addictions increased more than 50 percent since video gambling.
The U.S. Treasury Department is studying the link between gambling and bankruptcy. The Phillips Study shows that areas with casino-style gambling have higher suicide rates than those without.
Knowing these facts, why would the horse industry insist on introducing such a dangerous "product"? Selfishness.
Maryland tracks need to explore corporate partnerships and improve their marketing and management.
Other tracks are using their facilities to support concerts, boxing matches, art and crafts exhibits, create educational partnerships and much more.
We've seen in The Sun ("Tracks show purse surplus," April 4) that wagering, horses-per-race and purses remained high even after slots came to Delaware.
We also see that they had $2.6 million of subsidy money that they banked last year instead of spending it on purses.
Why should we listen to them when they aren't even telling us the truth? No, I'd rather they use that $10 million to educate our children. We'd all benefit from that.
Sites take old gas throughout the year
A Pasadena resident who expressed concern in an April 19 letter to the editor ("More drop-off sites for old gasoline") about where he could dispose of old gasoline apparently was unaware that Anne Arundel County offers residents numerous opportunities to dispose of fuels and other hazardous household wastes throughout the year.
Since the Department of Public Works started this drop-off program 10 years ago, 17,500 residents have used it to safely dispose of more than 1.3 million pounds of toxic chemicals and household products.
Gasoline, other solvents and fuels account for approximately 10 percent of the hazardous wastes brought to the drop-off centers.
Oil-based paint and paint solvents account for 57 percent.
More than half of the material accepted is recycled. The remainder is disposed of by a contractor licensed to handle hazardous materials at a properly licensed landfill or incinerator.
In 1996, County Executive John G. Gary expanded the number of annual household, hazardous waste drop-off events from two to eight to make the service more convenient for residents.
The DPW already has held two events this year.
Six more drop-off events are scheduled on the following days: May 16 and Sept. 19 at the Glen Burnie Convenience Center on Dover Road; June 20 and Oct. 10 at the Western District Roads yard in Odenton; July 18 at the Sudley Convenience Center and August 15 at the Heritage Office Center on Riva Road outside Annapolis.
The hours for each event are from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The writer is a spokesman with the Anne Arundel County land use and environmental office.
Residents force-fed racetrack
Sadly, The Sun, in its April 13 editorial "Track debate heads off course," has fallen into the same line of argument used by certain politicians and the Middle River Racing Association: Everyone is telling the residents of the Fort Smallwood area what will be good for them.
Residents did not initiate the NASCAR debate. Details of how a track would be built on the Cox Creek site were announced elsewhere in Anne Arundel County.
"Issues that matter to Marley Neck" include the fact that Cox Creek is a toxic site. The MRRA has told me it will simply cap the site and build on top of the cap. But who will dismantle the factory, and how long will it take?
I have visions of people in moon suits for three or more years depositing every piece of the factory in plastic bags.
What about the noise, air pollution and traffic congestion this will cause, with or without a separate off ramp?
This area is already becoming more residential, with land for development of 2,000 additional housing units on Marley Neck Boulevard.
It is also naive to think there will be no cost to county taxpayers.
There is nothing that frustrates the scrutiny of an enlightened group of citizens more than being told what they should do or think.
We respect our right to be heard on the issues. We hope we'll have an opportunity to do so.
James G. Kirk
I have followed the coverage closely of the proposed speedway in Pasadena, and I would like to know why The Sun has not thrown its support behind this worthwhile endeavor.
This proposal is a "no brainer." It is privately funded and will create thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in economic impact.
The proposal is "smart growth" at its finest. The ability to reclaim an abandoned copper refinery is an excellent use for this land.
The ability to attract tourism dollars is exciting. Motor sports fans are known to be loyal and will travel great distances and spend freely.
It is time for The Sun to endorse the speedway.
Basri A. Sila
Pub Date: 5/03/98