Letters to the editor - 9/3/02

September 03, 2002

Groundwater is in danger

To the editor:

Today as I headed south on Md. 67 I observed a very disturbing sight. A series of five or six perk-test sites had been prepared just south of the intersection of Md. 67 and Mount Carmel Church Road.

The field in which these perk sites were prepared was as brown as chocolate ice cream, and the soil which had been removed from the perk holes was dryer than any parched bone in the desert.

In case you do not know the purpose of a perk test is to see if soil will absorb water at a fast enough rate to allow for a septic system to be installed. Clearly land and subsoil which is as dry as that which we now have in southern Washington County would absorb any water at a fast rate. So what?

The problem which we have is not water absorption, it is lack of underground water.


We should insist on not only a perk test in Washington County, we should also insist on a test of underground water supplies before a building permit is issued. I can imagine no greater folly than that upon which we are now embarked in Washington County.

We are quickly running out of underground water, and wells and streams are running dry now.

Who in the county government should I contact for aid when my well and stream run dry? Who will help me with the expense of providing water for my family and my cattle?

I know the answer is that county officials will tell me about acts of God destroying my well and stream. I want to tell all who will listen that I will be in a court of equity the day my well and stream run dry asking for just compensation from those who continued to allow new wells to be drilled into severely depleted underground water tables. Perhaps then they will not consider my concerns to be frivolous and unfounded.

County commissioners hear me now, hear me loud and clear. If I run out of water, we will get to know each other intimately in court. Please consider your zoning and permit actions very carefully. You serve in a fiduciary capacity to protect the interests of the citizens of Washington County; please do so. Please impose a moratorium on new wells until at least our underground water supplies have returned to normal, something which will require several seasons of normal and above-normal rainfall.

Rodney T. Pearson Sr.


Howard case a county circus

To the editor:

Have you been following the circus of duplicity the Washington County Commissioners have been trying to sell us over the secret retirement fund of John Howard? Not since Bill Clinton got caught in the Oval Office with his pants down around his ankles have I heard such twists and turns of the English language concerning what was signed when and by whom.

It appears that no one on the commission can remember for sure if a document of secrecy was signed, should have been signed, was ever presented to them for signing, or even existed to begin with. If it did exist, it must have been the fault of lawyers. They get blamed for many of the ills of mankind anyway.

To me, the issue no longer is about Howard's secret retirement fund. It is about elected officials who don't have the backbone to stand up and take responsibility for their actions - be they right or wrong - and tell their constituents the truth.

If we the people haven't learned anything else about politicians, we should have learned that when what they say doesn't seem to make sense, there is a strong likelihood that there is no sense to be made.

Come election day, let us vote these people out of office. Then, perhaps, we will not remember if they ever existed to begin with.

Tony Suranno


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