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thumbs up, thumbs down 9/30/00

September 29, 2000

Thumbs up, thumbs down 9/30



Thumbs up

To Dr. Matthew Hahn, of the Tri-State Community Health Center in Hancock, for the quick-thinking way in which he distracted an armed man until staffers could exit the building. Thanks, doc.

Thumbs upTo the late Arthur H. Otts Katz, a former Hagerstown resident whose decades of involvement in dozens of Washington County businesses, charities and non-profit organizations earned him the community's love and respect.

Thumbs upTo the late Louise Sutter, for her generous bequests of $120,000 apiece to the Maryland Theatre and to the Zonta Club of Washington County. Her gift leaves the theater debt-free for the first time in years.

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Thumbs upTo Richard Phoebus, Horace Murphy, Jeff Kercheval and John Barr, for the community service that won them Hagerstown/Washington Chamber of Commerce's top awards for 2000. This area owes them more than most citizens will ever know.

Thumbs upTo the Hagerstown City Council, for accepting a state grant to hire an attorney to push landlords to stop illegal activity, including drug dealing on their properties. Go get 'em!

Thumbs upTo the 160 students from Boonsboro and Sharpsburg elementary schools and the adult volunteers who helped celebrate National Kids Voting Day Sept. 26, to inspire others to go to the polls with their parents Nov. 7 and make voting a family tradition.

Thumbs upTo artist Mark Twain Noe, for his donation of many hours of time to paint backgrounds for a display of wildlife in the Charles T. Brightbill Environmental Center near James Buchanan High School in Mercersburg, Pa.

Thumbs upTo the Washington County Commissioners, for adopting a retirement program for volunteer fire/rescue personnel. It will cost $8 million over 15 years, but full-time paid personnel would be far more expensive than that.

Thumbs downTo NBC's Olympic commentators, who insist on portraying the contests as the U.S. vs. the rest of the world. Aren't the Olympic games supposed to be about bringing nations together?

Thumbs down

To the U.S. Congress, which is behind schedule again on the budget, with 11 of 13 spending bills unfinished at the fiscal year's end. As Sen. Robert Byrd of West Virginia notes, delay only encourages closed-door wheeling and dealing.

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