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Letters to the editor

September 02, 1998

Blame board for Humphreys' excesses

To the editor:

Recent articles about the unusual expenses and vehicle use of a member, Andrew Humphreys, of the elected school board deserve comment - particularly so in view of the fact that Humphreys is a candidate for county commissioner in the coming primary election.

I am sorry Humphreys was outraged by the initial newspaper report, but the matter is one for which reporting is reasonable, and the reporting itself - however negative Humphreys may consider it - did report both sides of the situation.

Notwithstanding, as Humphreys has indicated, the expenses were incurred within the terms of board policy (which encourages attendance at out-of-town meetings), and there have been no claims either to the contrary or that any of the other expenses were not reasonable in purpose and amount.

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If there is any fault to be found (and I don't want to imply that there is) at least half of it should be laid at the door of the board (or of its members unhappy about Humphrey's spending). The board knew - or should have known - of the situation long before it reached its later stages. By its failing to take effective protective action, the board not only left the barn unlocked but open as well, and is in poor position to avoid a pointed finger.

There have also been reports of Humphrey's frequent use of board vehicles. The indications are that such use has complied with administrative requirements. If that be the case, why fault Humphreys? Rather, if such use is not acceptable, the school system should tighten its requirements - and perhaps should have done so much earlier.

Humphreys has indicated the vehicle use was tied to activities connected with his board membership. Absent claims to the contrary, his comments should be accepted, and the acceptance should be favorable. For my part, I have never seen a board member more visible at school-related activities than Humphreys, and what I see has been supported by what I have heard through the grapevine.

I am concerned by the newspaper report that in the future Humphreys must "clear" his "travel" (expense?) plans with the School Superintendent. The report would have been more helpful if the meaning of "clear" had been clearer.

Although board employees who are under the supervision of the superintendent reasonably might be expected to "clear" any proposed expenses with him, Humphreys is an elected official who is not under the supervision of the superintendent, and should not be required to "clear" his projected expenses with the superintendent.

While I cannot join Humphreys in the full measure of his outrage, I can understand his having strong feelings about the handling of the matter. He has worked hard within the rules, and deserved a kinder treatment. Under the circumstances, I support him for his actions and his comments.

Alan A. Marriner

Hagerstown

These poor ladies

To the editor:

Some women have told me that Clinton is still their man but then they justify themselves by claiming that all men are adulterers, and Clinton is no different from anyone else of his gender. (Ouch!)

That some women feel that way is really tragic. Their relationships must be awful.

I hope and pray that these ladies will find a way to establish relationships with good men who earn and inspire their unconditional faith and trust.

Men of faith and integrity may not make headlines - they just make good husbands and fathers.

Larry Kump

Falling Waters, W.Va.

Starr working for Hillary

To the editor:

Just a passing thought. Does Hillary Clinton owe Ken Starr a fond "Thank you?"

Had it not been for him, chances are she may never have learned of her husband's infidelity and straight-in-the-eye lying. Think about it.

John McCune

Hagerstown

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