As news stories go, it wasn't very long. Not more than six paragraphs at the most. But the report that moved on Monday's Associated Press wire ought to be a wake-up call to anyone who's concerned about the health of non-profit organizations in Washington County.
The AP story followed a longer one which appeared in the Sunday Herald-Mail, a story which contained the news that $61.3 million was bet on tip jars in Washington County during the 12 month-period which ended in June 1997. The story also noted that the total was $6 million greater than that for the previous year.
Now imagine that you're in Annapolis, working as an official of a state government which has made many promises to many people, promises which will cost money to keep. You're scanning the wire for state news and suddenly a little nugget of news catches your eye. In little old Washington County, they're spending $61.3 million on a form of gambling that involves tearing open little slips of paper - and the state isn't getting a cut of it!