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Letters to the editor 9/24

September 24, 2002

Townsend, for education



To the editor:


As a mother actively involved in assuring quality education in Washington County schools during and after my own children's time there, and as the grandmother of four beautiful granddaughters who are or soon will be entering the school system, I'm writing to reiterate my support for Kathleen Kennedy Townsend for governor of Maryland.

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend is a fighter for quality education, while her opponent voted to slash education funding and eliminate the Department of Education. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend championed funding for early childhood education, lowering class sizes and emphasizing reading in early grades while her opponent voted to slash Head Start, school lunch and school loan programs.

Kathleen Kennedy Townsend has given her commitment to continue her work with and for parents and communities to attract and retain the best possible teachers. Her opponent, who is claiming to be a "moderate" needs to find a dictionary because someone with a voting record like his is certainly no "moderate."

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More importantly, maybe Bob Ehrlich needs to go back to school as he only earned a 9 percent on his report card from the Children's Defense Fund and earned a 16 percent on his report card from the National Education Association. Are these the kind of grades we'd accept for or from our children? I think not.

I'm voting for Kathleen Kennedy Townsend for governor because she believes as I do, that the future belongs to our children and that we have the responsibility to assure they get the best possible education to reach their maximum potential and become the leaders we'll need and of whom we'll be proud. Let's not let our children down. Join with me on Nov. 5 and vote for Kathleen Kennedy Townsend for governor of Maryland.

Kathleen D. Hall

Hagerstown




Enough of Taylor, slot talk



To the editor:


Del. Casper Taylor has declared that those who oppose slot machines but favor other types of gambling are hypocrites. He has also stated that he is opposed to casino gambling, through which slot machines produce most of their revenue. Is he thus not being a hypocrite too?

Taylor also has indicated that we must compete with West Virginia for lost revenues due to slot machines. But West Virginia is now considering legalizing casinos because lawmakers are still facing a budget shortfall. Will Taylor soon be calling for a "level playing field" once West Virginia legalizes casinos? Where will this gambling mania stop?

West Virginia has lower taxes on cigarettes and a lower property tax than does Maryland. Why doesn't Taylor support lower taxes on cigarettes and lower property taxes if we are losing revenue to West Virginia? Should not we be competitive in that respect as well? Or is he being hypocritical?

What about the hundreds of millions generated by the multitude of lotteries we already have in this state? Weren't those proceeds supposed to support education and care for the elderly? What happened to that money?

And why does Maryland, one of the wealthiest states in the country, need slots to balance its budget? Could it be because Taylor and his friend Parris Glendening have just legislated the largest state budget deficit in history, of more than $1 billion?

Or could it be to pay for Rocky Gap lodge and golf course which, according to MEDCO, has lost $16 million dollars over the past three years?

Or could it be to help Allegany County's government continue to pay the $400,000 per year to subsidize Rocky Gap, that is now coming out of our county's general fund instead of Open Space funds?

I can understand Taylor's desperation to recoup the losses to which his poor decision-making has led, but is he the leader to fix this? He is one of the major players that got us into this mess in the first place! Why should the state make losers out of our citizens to pay for their government spending excesses?

Since so many of Allegany County's residents are struggling under Taylor's 28-year leadership to feed, clothe and educate their families, why does he believe our local population can afford to lose millions of dollars in slot machines?

As a community we must draw the line against slots. Taylor must hear the voice of the people. Vote your conscience and bring fiscal responsibility to the State House, not more gambling!

Frank J. Clark

Cumberland

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