Live chat with Hagerstown City Councilman Kristin Aleshire - transcript

September 06, 2005

The Herald-Mail will present a live chat with Hagerstown City Councilman Kristin Aleshire, starting at 1:00 pm and ending at 2:00 pm today. Questions or comments can be submitted by clicking here before and during the chat.

The text of the live discussion will flow into the bottom of this page during its live hour. You can either click "Refresh" on your browser window or hit "F5" on your keyboard to see new responses. Make sure you scroll down to see the latest answers.

Name: Patty

Location: Hagerstown, North End

Guest: Aleshire

Message: Hello,

I was wondering once the hospital vacates its current location what will happen to the building it currently houses? Will the burden be placed on the city to raze the property or with the Hospital be responsible for razing it? If it is kept what will be its use? I see it as a possible burden for the city and residence.


Aleshire: It is currently in the hospital's financial plans for relocation to Robinwood to raze their existing site. The city will bear no part of this cost.

Name: Brenda

Location: Hancock

Guest: Aleshire

Question: An advisory board was recently formed in regards to Holly Place continued funding. What, if anything, has this group done? I havent seen anything in the Herald Mail to indicated that they have even had a meeting. Holly Place does not have all the time in the world to raise the much needed money to operate.

Aleshire: I think the advisory board was created through the efforts of the local state legislators and the current board that oversees Holly Place. This question would better be directed to those entities. Both the city and county came up with emergency funds within their current budgets to assist in this effort due to the time crunch.

Name: ed jordan

Location: williamsport

Guest: Aleshire

Question: what ever happened to the "5 acres per building lot" in wash co? Need to stop all new development

Aleshire: This is more of a question for the county commissioners, but I believe the county has recently enacted changes to their ordinances that address this zoning question of density regulations. I think you will find that in recent Herald articles just in the last week showing a large number of lots already approved for development that are not subject to prior or current density regulations.

After your council victory, you referred to the large expenditures made by some of your opponents and said that "Money is a very, very poor substitute for intelligence." What did you mean by that?

Aleshire: In a later letter to the editor, I enunciated the meaning of this statement. The word that I should have chosen was "knowledge," because it became apparent during the campaign process that others involved appeared to be using the effect of money to get a message out there to the public without actually taking the time to really research the issues.

Name: Carrie

Location: Marion, PA

Guest: Aleshire

Question: I live in PA, but work in Hagerstown with the homeless. Your colleague, Ms Nigh, has been quite outspoken about her views on the homeless in our community. I wonder if you share the same views as Ms Nigh, particularly her feeling that our community is a magnet for homeless persons due to services available. Do you feel that the city should stop giving money to such organizations as REACH?

Thank you in advance for your response.

Aleshire: City money included in our annual budget is a small part of the overall city budget. Therefore, I do not feel that it's appropriate to remove any beneficial group from that part of the budget. However, I share similar views with Ms. Nigh to the degree that locally funded services should be directly benefiting locally-effected people first. I believe that there was an article in the Herald approximately a year and a half ago that accentuated the point of an influx of homeless to the area from other areas because of the number of services offered in this community.

Name: frank

Location: hagerstown

Guest: Aleshire

Question: how can we continue to keep the downtown rennovation a priority and in general keep hagerstown clean and safe??

i work in a detention center as a drug/alcohol counselor and i get really concerned about the issue of drugs/crime/housing and its negative effect on our town thanks,and by the way i follow city council and watch the meetings and think you personally handle issues very professionally. sincerly,frank

Aleshire: I think the best way to keep downtown revitalization a priority is to continue our efforts of increasing the number of public/private partnerships similar to the various projects currently underway. I think that we also need to couple with that our continued efforts of an efficient , visible police force, comprehensive camera system, increased public activity, and removing the public perception that our downtown is unsafe.

The 2-plus-2 committee, made up of two council members and two county commissioners, has been meeting for some time now. What is the most important agreement to come out of those meetings?

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