Evans responds to criticism by educators
With all due respect to the choice for Anne Arundel County executive made by the Teachers Association of Anne Arundel County ("Teachers back outsiders against Gary, council members," June 16), I wish to set the record straight regarding my support for education.
During my tenure on the County Council, I have voted to provide money for the education of our young people over and above the requests of the former and current county executives. In my leadership role as council chairman for three years, and as an individual member of the council, additional dollars have been added for classroom teachers, staff for "Bridge the Gap," new schools, renovations, classroom partitions, textbooks and roofs.
To better understand the special education budget, I've actively participated with the Infants and Toddlers Interagency Coordinating Council. I continue to serve as a board member for Scholarships for Scholars. Within the 5th District, I secured interior walls for Folger McKinsey Elementary. The renovation and expansion of Broadneck High and Jones Elementary received my sustained support. Belvedere Elementary wouldn't have received the attention it was long due without my pushing the administration to fund this request. I worked for safe school walking routes in Cape St. Claire and Whitehurst.
This year alone I set the stage for the council to add additional money to fund the asbestos removal program so classroom lighting can be improved.
While the efforts to move money to the board were unsuccessful, I stood squarely for education. As the next county executive, I would demand educational excellence.
The writer is a Democratic candidate for Anne Arundel County executive.
Articles helped focus debate on Clay Street
I would like to thank The Sun for its coverage of the recent controversy involving the Clay Street community and the Hope VI application. As your readers know, the Annapolis Housing Authority has decided not to put in an application to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development this year.
The Hope VI application met strong resistance from our community because we did not trust officials who were telling us this was a good program. They gave us no assurances that Hope VI would not become another massive displacement program.
People who live on Clay Street, as your reporter discovered, did not trust these officials. Just 15 years ago, HUD found that both the city of Annapolis and the housing authority had discriminated against African-Americans through their renewal programs.
We were told 15 years ago that our concerns were not justified. Fifteen years later, we have seen the impact of these programs. We want to see the Clay Street community improved, but we want these improvements to come with assurances. We want the residents who live on Clay Street to continue to have an opportunity to enjoy the last undeveloped waterfront property in Annapolis-College Creek Terrace.
Again, thanks to The Sun, we were able to win a victory. Who says you can't beat City Hall, the housing authority and special interests?
Recycling today offers payoff in future
Craig Timberg's article, "Recycling hasn't lived up to hype," (May 25) suggests that Marylanders spend too much time and money pursuing the false promises of recycling, while landfills remain spacious, plentiful and cheap.
Hundreds of profitable Anne Arundel County firms practice recycling and waste reduction voluntarily, not to "save the planet," but to satisfy shareholders interested in the bottom line and dividend checks.
Likewise, Anne Arundel County continues its residential recycling programs because it's smarter than relying solely on huge out-of-state landfills or waste-to-energy facilities that will soon compete in a deregulated energy industry.
Land disposal carries a number of future hidden costs that are not included in the very low tipping fees of many of today's private facilities: future landfill replacement and liability risks to name a few.
In fact, low tipping fees are a very recent phenomenon of the past few years; the industry is so volatile that no one knows for just how long such prices will continue.
Recycling, on the other hand, shows all its costs up front, consumes only the land area required for processing facilities, .. and returns commodities to the shelf rather than burying them.
Ironically, the offsetting environmental and societal benefits of recycling are almost impossible to calculate and are therefore largely ignored in this kind of debate.
Continuing at last year's rate of recycling, Anne Arundel County could double the projected lifespan of its only landfill and delay borrowing millions of dollars required to expand it. This money may then remain in the economy for better uses.
In addition, for every job created to dispose of a ton of waste, an average of 10 jobs could be created to recycle it. Carl Hursh, of Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection, reports that 25,000 jobs in that state alone were created by the recycling industry. Other more expensive economic development programs have had less success.
The real question raised by the article is not answered by pitting unit costs of disposal against recycling. A more appropriate comparison is a systems approach, which models the costs of a system with recycling against one without over time.
Maintaining a solid waste system is not all that different from maintaining a car. Over the next few years, if you choose not to replace your tires or timing belt, realign the wheels or change your oil, you might save several thousand dollars in the short run. But your car wouldn't last very long, and the money you spend up front would be forfeited to repairs or replacement.
Abandoning recycling altogether to fill up garbage trucks and disposal facilities with as much trash as possible, as quickly as possible, is a lot like electing not to maintain your car. You can save a little now, but you'll regret it (and pay for it) later.
In spite of recycling's proven value in Anne Arundel's own strategy for handling garbage and preventing landfill space, there is as much recyclable trash still being thrown out by our residents as we are recovering. If more people boosted recycling efforts at work and at home, reliance on local landfills could be scaled back further, and landfill space would remain in high supply.
The result would be to drive disposal costs down even further, as a result of less demand, and end up spending less overall.
One could argue that recycling is, in fact, part of the reason for today's cheap disposal to begin with.
Anne Arundel, like many local governments, is charged with finding and following the best long-term solution likely to see us through seasons of low landfill tip fees and high ones.
This solution promises not to "save the planet," but guarantee responsible stewardship of land and financial resources so the true cost to our community of safely handling garbage will be as low as possible for years to come.
This approach is based on long term vision and strategic planning that will affect generations of county residents. We are confident they will be glad we chose the approach with recycling rather than the one without.
The writer is recycling projects manager in the Anne Arundel County Department of Public Works.
Restaurant serves up art scholarships
We are pleased to announce the first Skipper's Pier High School Art Scholarship Contest.
We founded this contest to recognize the outstanding artistic accomplishments of Anne Arundel County high school students. Skipper's Pier will award a total of $1,000 in scholarships to the top three students who exhibited works at the Anne Arundel County Public High School Student Art Exhibit May 4-30. The exhibit was held at the John A. Cade Center for Fine Arts at Anne Arundel Community College.
Art departments from each Anne Arundel County high school selected the best works from their students to be exhibited. Sixty-eight talented students from across Anne Arundel exhibited work, including photography, ceramics, pen and ink, sculpture, and acrylic and watercolor painting.
A committee of administrators and faculty members of the county public schools selected the top 24 entries as finalists. During the summer, the finalists will have their works exhibited at the Skipper's Pier restaurant, 6158 Drum Point Road, Deale.
On Sept. 15, a reception will be held at the restaurant for finalists and their families, followed by the presentation of the top three awards.
We are honored to announce the 24 finalists:
Arundel: Kimberly Brooks, Amanda Mazza, Nina Tukarski.
Broadneck: Mattigen McMichael.
Chesapeake: Nicole Bonadio.
Glen Burnie: Rob Lay, Byung Moon, Jonathan Sitte.
Meade: Jennifer Wagner.
Northeast: Margot Van Den Berghe.
Old Mill: Trevor Best, Nicholas Cypriano, Ted Desautels, Tae Jin Kim, Fred Scriba, Jason Wharf, Soo Jin So.
Southern: Sarah Green, Emily Perrone.
South River: Leah Bender, Courtney Miller, Sarah Callahan.
Other schools: Dallas Cox, Beck Williams.
Customers and friends of Skipper's Pier may participate in this worthy scholarship contest. The Skipper's Pier Patrons Honorable Mention Award will be given to the student artist voted favorite by patrons.
To cast your vote at Skipper's Pier, simply write the artist's number on a $1 bill and deposit in the ballot box there. One dollar will count as one vote with the winner awarded a scholarship totaling all monies collected. All ballots must be received by 10 p.m. Sept. 13.
For information, call Raye Price at 410-867-7110 or 301-261-9322.
John and Raye Price
Pub Date: 6/28/98