Commissioners contradict stance on environmentOur county commissioners...

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Commissioners contradict stance on environment

Our county commissioners seem a bit confused as to their commitment to the statewide goal of restoring and protecting the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries in Carroll County. At the least, there is an apparent contradiction between their words and deeds.

Last week, the commissioners were all too eager to join 21 other Maryland counties in signing the Local Government Partnership Agreement.

This important agreement is an affirmation by local governments that they will abide by the terms of the new Chesapeake Bay Agreement, which was signed just the previous week by Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, the District of Columbia and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Yet, in their own red-line revision of the county's Master Plan which they recently returned to the Planning and Zoning Commission, they managed to remove two of the essential environmental policy components that were in the original document that the planning commission forwarded to them.

Because the commissioners struck those terms in the revisions, one might believe that they can neither support a policy to embrace the statewide goal to reduce nutrients in our bay and its tributaries nor can they agree to set an example for environmental stewardship on county-owned property.

Both components are crucial elements of the Chesapeake Bay Agreement and will most likely be part of any criteria that our county encounters in requesting future funding from the state for any and all projects.

In discussing the commissioners' support of the efforts to improve bay water quality, Robin Frazier is quoted as saying, "We already have our own sort of Smart Growth and we abide by that."

Misleading comments such as hers indicate the incredible chasm of knowledge she and this Board of Commissioners may have to overcome if they are to truly find the means of achieving sustainable development practices here and the key to attaining state and federal funding for much needed new projects.

I hope they can offer some clarification as to what appears to be either a classic case of political hypocrisy or a ray of hope indicating a recent change in their policy by supporting both the state and Carroll's environment.

Do they truly support the goals of the 2000 Chesapeake Bay Agreement or was it just a mistake to have signed the Local Government Partnership Agreement?

My hope is that they will recall both strike-outs to the Master Plan; indicating a clarification of their position and solid support of the state and county ecologies.

Neil Ridgely

Finksburg

Teacher Breslin favored for school board office

I am writing this letter to encourage voters to acquaint themselves with school board candidate Lisa Breslin. I have had the pleasure of knowing Lisa personally for many years as a friend and neighbor.

Education has always been one of her passions. She spends countless hours volunteering in the Carroll County school system. She also teaches at Western Maryland College. Any student lucky enough to be a member of Lisa's classes will find that she is available to that student well beyond the standard lecture periods.

Her love of children is obvious to everyone who knows her. Her enthusiasm and "can-do" attitude make her house the one on the block that all the kids park their bikes in front of and where all will be welcome.

She makes her decisions based on facts, not half-truths or popularity contests. I am confident that as a school board member, Lisa will make her decisions based on what is best for our children.

Linda M. Warzocha

Westminster

An animal story for the school board

The school board meeting July 5 was another example of inaction and loads of mea culpas.

There is an old joke that may apply.

A farmer had a jackass for sale. A prospective buyer arrived, looked the animal over, found it sound and paid the farmer. When he pulled on the reins to put the animal in the truck, the ass stood fast. Frustrated, the buyer screamed at the farmer and demanded his money back.

The farmer picked up a 2-by-4 and smacked the jackass between the eyes. The buyer was stunned and asked why he had hit the animal as he led him away.

The farmer said "You have to get his attention first."

Anyone have a 2-by-4 handy? Make that four of them because we have a bunch of jackasses to move. Maybe some should be sent directly to the glue factory.

The school board and some of the top school administrators supposedly are educated individuals. Why do they act like a bunch of arrogant idiots? Do they award doctorates in duplicity?

I beg the public to be very discerning in the next election and give Susan Krebs the support she needs to turn off the $30 million leak of tax dollars.

Jack G. Winder

Westminster

Blood donor drive faces shortages, delays

On behalf of all the patients whose lives you help save, the American Red Cross would like to thank all those blood donors throughout the year and during times of severe shortages.

Unfortunately, this type of emergency situation puts a strain on the entire Red Cross system, resulting in delays at certain blood drives. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes you, and thank you for waiting so patiently to help those in need.

This is a critical situation. There is less than a half-day's supply of types O and B blood on the shelves. While the response to this appeal has been great, we are still not collecting enough blood to boost the supply back up to where it needs to be.

The need for blood products is so high right now that we are only able to keep up with immediate demand. We need to work together to build the supply back up to a stable and adequate level of three to four days.

The simple truth is that donating blood helps save lives. It may be your best friend or neighbor who needs your blood today. Or, it could be a virtual stranger who relies on your support to help them.

Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs a blood transfusion. It is thanks to blood donors that the American Red Cross is able to respond to the ongoing needs of patients throughout the area.

The summer months can present a particular challenge in collecting enough blood products. In addition, there has been a significant increase in blood utilization during the past year, of approximately 20,000 units.

We must continue to educate people about the need for blood donors because in this age of technological and medical advances, there is still no substitute for blood.

Who can donate blood? Anyone 17 years of age or older, weighing 110 pounds or more and feeling in good health may be eligible to donate blood.

The American Red Cross would like to encourage those who don't give blood to become donors if they are eligible. Please call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE (1-800-448-3543) and schedule an appointment to donate blood. Your donation does make a difference.

Gary Ouellette

Baltimore

The writer is executive director of American Red Cross Blood Services , Greater Chesapeake & Potomac Region .

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