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Our New Year's wish list

January 01, 2004

On this New Year's Day, 2004, we offer some of our wishes for the next 12 months. They include the following:

- That all American troops stationed in Iraq, Afghanistan and other trouble spots around the world return home safely to the family members who worry so much about them.

- That President Bush and his administration figure out a way to turn Iraq into a democracy where being a citizen matters more than who your grandfather's enemies were.

- That Democratic and Republican state lawmakers in Pennsylvania, Maryland and West Virginia don't get so caught up in the quest for party dominance that they forget that their top task is to make government work efficiently for the good of the citizens.

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- That the Washington County Commissioners spend more than five minutes discussing the School Board's plan to issue bonds for school construction and renovation.

- That the candidates for Washington County School Board remember that their true constituents are not the adults who will vote for them, but all the children in the public school system's classrooms.

- That the Hagerstown City Council follow through with its decision to develop new and renovated market-rate housing downtown to draw residents with money to spend and investments to protect.

- That citizens remember that, for the most part, elected officials are honest people who get too little money and not nearly enough respect for the jobs that they do.

- That the Maryland General Assembly does the right thing in 2004 and provides $1.8 million in operating funds for the University System of Maryland's Hagerstown Education Center.

- That all Washington County governments and citizen groups support the effort to not only shelter the homeless, but to also get them counseling and job training.

- That all those who feel they need to be drugged or drunk to endure life find fulfillment in some other, less dangerous ways.

- That we continue to have the support of our faithful readers and advertisers, who depend on us to cover the news and to help keep their businesses prospering.

Happy New Year from The Herald-Mail.

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