Letters to the editor

February 04, 1997

Letters to the editor

Another 'oops' from the county on landfill's fees

To the editor:

Well, here we go again. Another ''oops'' from our county government, this time, not the sewer system, but the solid waste system. This heralds another dip into the pockets of the county's citizens reminiscent of the sewer debacle where our county government failed for quite a few years to match income and expense.

Our Washington County Commissioners and county employees seem to not understand that you cannot survive if you spend more than you take in and that if you raise your prices beyond what the market is willing to pay, you lose business (ie: solid waste haulers using out of county landfills due to lower prices).

Now, they want to somehow force people to use their service, (bypassing ordinances, laws, whatever) requiring any firm that picks up solid waste in Washington County to use the county landfill, regardless of the cost.


I wonder if they will propose a similar solution to the problem that may arise when Mack Trucks, the sewage pretreatment facility's largest customer, finds a lower cost elsewhere.)

Of course, raising the tipping fees means that the fees charged to county residents will go up to cover that cost, another way for the government to ''bleed'' its citizens without openly raising taxes.

They also plan to divide the county into ''subdistricts'' in the process of ''solving'' this problem. Curious that the idea of financially self-supporting, cost-based subdistricts was condemned in the case of the sewer system but is now the favored solution for the solid waste system.

I am greatly disappointed in our County Commissioners' failure to provide leadership. I sincerely hope that the next batch of County Commissioners will find sound solutions to these problems, perhaps by privatizing the landfills and sewage treatment facilities or, at the least, getting them on a sound fiscal basis.

Robert L. Kohler


Solid-waste mess will give citizens bigger tax bills

To the editor:

So, the Washington County Director of Public Works blames the local garbage haulers for the decrease in tonnage going to the Resh Road landfill. Welcome to the world of business and reality, Mr. Rohrer. If you can purchase 10 pounds of potatoes at supermarket X for $1.98, would you encourage your wife to shop at supermarket Y and spend $3.98?

The problem with bureaucrats and politicians is that governments never have to face the reality of competition. If you make a mistake, such as the sorry situation with the sewer department, or overpricing dumping fees, you just raise taxes to overcome the deficit and correct the mistake.

The taxpayers, the saps who support the bloated government system, have no alternative but to pay the higher taxes and fees. If bureaucrats and the county commissioners were in a competitive environment, as is the local business community, you would not last five minutes.

It's competitive out here, Mr. Rohrer! People go to the lowest possible price for goods and services. I've never heard of anyone purchasing something from the highest bidder. And that includes all levels of government. Why should you expect anything different from the local garbage haulers?

I suggest the commissioners take all you bureaucrats in county government to school for a basic course in economics. It's called Economics 101 and is available in most local high schools.

Herman F. Whitaker


Can't we all live in peace together?

To the editor:

If the past is not forgotten, what good is the future? History is doomed to repeat itself if we do not learn from our mistakes. The Confederate flag supporters have only scratched the surface. Everyone is entitled to an opinion, even the instigators of this ignorance. But hear this: anyone who is prejudiced against people because of their sex, race, or anything else along these lines is a real loser.

We all get hurt and feel pain when we are stepped on and put down. We must come together and work toward peace. When it comes down to it, the one thing that we have in common is that we will all die someday. If you must die supporting these prejudices and the flag that made them, then so be it. But if you can't learn to appreciate the world around you, why live anyway?

Keith Jones


The fairgrounds: Don't chop it up

To the editor:

The strength in the Hagerstown Fairground is its size. If you cut it into small parcels, you weaken it. It looks to me as though some people have started to do this to benefit a select few.

I feel that anything on the fair grounds should support itself and show a profit for the city.

I not only want the fairground to work at a profit, but to benefit most of Hagerstown citizens from children to senior citizens.

First there should be a fair two or three weeks every year. A fair is usually where people forget some of their troubles and have a good time.

Dad rings the bell to show off his strength.

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