Letters to the Editor

February 18, 1998

The fight for Clear Spring

To the editor:

The Planning Commission has exerted much effort to rezone agricultural lands in the Clear Spring neighborhood. A change to HI 1 commercial/industrial, on the outskirts of our area would alter beautiful farm scenery. It may open the door to exploitation and it would effect local culture.

Throughout America, there are worthwhile advocacy groups formed to plead for utmost caution in such development matters. Ninety eight percent of Clear Spring residents have signed petitions, demonstrating that a loss of productive and scenic farmland is not their will.

You can listen to neighbor farmers, merchants, diverse property owners, families and the politically savvy. Protest is respectable from those with the most vested interests, the ones who live here. A few despairing individuals speak as if there may be "no use in standing in opposition." A local merchant correctly states, "the HI 1 Proposal, if formally rezoned, would put me out of business." His concern extends to 21 employees. One person, disrespectful of the overwhelming citizen concern, declares, "the HI 1 Proposal is a done deal."


At past public meetings, good people raised their voices of legitimate concern. Thank God some people are moved now and again to deplore what could be tragic if lands are not protected. For to say nothing would ruin the qualities in ones own heart and spirit.

I believe that Clear Spring residents may be living in a potentially destructive and dangerous period. Anyone can witness other towns where decades of industrialization has had its impact. Washington County Commissioners/planners must be cautious and not act contrary to community membership.

Once a village begins to be ruined, the population suffers and protective measures are not able to restore it. Testimony across our nation speaks sadly of rapid overall deteriorating conditions. It is a false assumption to believe certain entrepreneur developers will design architecture projects in attractive style. It is the same old time trick followed by willy-nilly constructions exploiting the resources. Industries sprawl ugly along HI 1 zones.

We ask leadership to preserve rural atmosphere. Business people working to safeguard natural ecosystem are welcome, yet our children would be poisoned by commercial industrial usage that has no real value. The loss of farmland and the urban population moving "out to the country" have signaled the need for comprehensive land-use planning. Leadership within federal, state and local communities respectfully explore alternatives to "Business as usual" sprawls. We depend on you to vote for land conservation and to represent citizens' quality of life.

Understand that we are hospitable but must protect our family against what we don't need. We also have responsibilities to be in watchcare of our community. It would be foolish to open a door that ruins a town.

Arthur James

Clear Spring

Unlock the door to the police station

To the editor:

In the Jan. 15 "Mail Call" section, a citizen of Hagerstown brought up the subject of the police station not being clearly marked and the doors being locked.

This citizen brought out several good points in the article, those being that after a certain hour of the day, weekends and holidays you cannot gain entry into the station unless you ring a bell and wait for someone to come down to let you in. So what happens in the event of an emergency and you have to get in right away?

What, if any, is the reason that a police station has to have locked doors? Is the crime that bad in this city even the police officers have to work behind closed locked doors? This is totally unacceptable to the citizens of this city. It is unheard of that a police station locks its doors; whose bright idea was this? Let's lock the doors to the hospital too. It would make just about as much sense.

As far as the lighted sign, that too is a good idea. What about people who are traveling through the city who do not know where the police department really is? A large lighted sign would make it a lot easier to find.

If the city should post lighted signs on the Franklin Street side, the Washington Street side and the Burhans Boulevard side of the building where they can be clearly seen from a distance. Unlock these doors and put a uniformed officer inside.

Gerry Rickard


Commissioners need to listen

To the editor:

To quote from a letter to the editor last year, "Cedar Lawn residents don't want sewer, and Cedar Lawn residents will not accept an underhanded, secretive, sewer plan generated by our so called planners, to supplement the developments and the white elephant waste treatment plant that has been and will continue to be dictatorially forced upon the residents of this area by our lame duck County Commissioners."

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