One term limits for Mt. Jackson council
An open letter to Mt. Jackson residents; once again it’s council election time (May 1) when the town’s voters will elect three council members.
My proposals are simple: “one-term” limits for council - members and the mayor because long-term incumbency creates the possibility of corruption even in small towns. “One-term” limits eliminates this possibility.
A full-time mayor at $40,000 annually instead of an appointed town manager at $80,000 annually. Isn’t the mayor elected to conduct the town’s business? The town’s taxpaying residents don’t need a mayor AND a town manager.
Changing the town’s tax revenue structure from the vehicle, real estate and structure tax to a “1 cent” town sales tax on all items sold in town except for medicine and food. Taxing food is “insanity!”
Open an adult-supervised “teen center” with no colors, alcohol, profanity, drugs or tobacco allowed. Parental contact when teen(s) exits teen center.
The taxpaying residents having the “right” to vote on all tax issues instead of the long-time council vote only.
These are some of my proposals and if elected, I will serve only one-term and I will not accept a salary and I will expose to the taxpaying residents any corruption that may exist because I’m not intimidated by council, the mayor or the town manager.
Remember, the town’s government cannot be any better than the taxpaying residents want it to be.
I respectfully ask for your vote on May 1, 2012
Al Asbury, Mt. Jackson
Put cost studies of jail options online
The Shenandoah County Board of Supervisors claims that a regional jail is the most cost effective option for updating our jail. Some of them express outrage that a firestorm of opposition has arisen to their decision and insist they have done their due diligence in exploring options.
Their claim should be easy to prove. All they have to do is make available the cost studies of the options they considered. Hopefully, the options included those that our sheriff suggested plus other options any prudent person would have considered. I suspect the only study that exists is for the regional jail because it appears that is what they had their sights on from the beginning. Cautious buyers research all options. Not our board; they locked in on a regional jail with a laser. Even when our sheriff suggested options, the board always asked the sheriff to do the cost studies to support his option. Why ask the sheriff? The supervisors know he doesn’t have the resources to do cost studies. Besides, that’s not the sheriff’s job; that’s their job. Maybe they didn’t want the options studied for fear of what they would find.
So here is a request to our Board of Supervisors. Post on the county website the final reports of all the analyses and cost studies that were done for all options that were considered in your decision to join the Regional Jail Authority.
Ken Cruise, Toms Brook
Correction on quote in March 24 news story
When a reporter from The Northern Virginia Daily came to me after a demonstration against the Obama administration’s mandate that the Catholic church be required to pay for services it deems immoral, I was flattered and gave what I thought to be a thoughtful, measured response. I would have been more flattered if the reporter actually quoted me rather than write what he likely surmised to be an adequate synopsis of what I had said. In this paper, March 24 edition, I was quoted as saying, “They are taking away our religious freedom, what we believe in.” Rather than being flattered, I was a bit embarrassed. This quote, which is in response to the question, why were we here?… sounds shallow and a bit petulant. If you will allow space for a bit of a correction, I will be in your debt.
Obama’s mandate will, for the first time in the history of the United States, coerce a particular faith to materially participate in what it teaches to be an immoral and sinful practice. If the Catholic church, or any of its myriad institutions, fails to abide by the mandate, the federal government will make the church pay large financial penalties for what will be considered its recalcitrance. No, the federal government can not take away “what we believe in,” but the Obama administration has written a law (a 2,700-page law) which “prohibits the free exercise of” religion. That we were there is no surprise. I hope that once all understand what is at stake, all Americans will rise up against this truly tyrannical law.
Bill Castellan, Front Royal
250 volunteer with area Red Cross chapter
This National Volunteer Week, April 15 to 21, the American Red Cross is celebrating our own dedicated volunteers, the people who make the Red Cross run. Red Cross volunteers are doers. Red Cross volunteers are people in action.
Our chapter has nearly 250 volunteers from all walks of life. They come together with one common purpose—to prevent and alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies. In the 2012 National Volunteer Week Proclamation, President Barack Obama states that “our lives are made richer, our communities are drawn closer, and our country is forged stronger by the dedication and generous spirit of volunteers. I encourage every American to stand up and play their part - to put their shoulder up against the wheel and help change history’s course.”
Red Cross volunteers are always ready to step in and help people down the street, across the nation and around the world. They teach lifesaving safety courses such as first aid, CPR, babysitting and care giving. Volunteers serve veterans, members of the military, and their families; work at blood drives; and respond to large and small disasters. During National Volunteer Week, the Red Cross wants to thank each volunteer. We take this time to recognize the selfless gifts of time, money and blood the Red Cross has received from our community.
National Volunteer Week is also a time to invite you to join us. If you are not a volunteer, give the Red Cross a try. Red Crossers are people who are trained to perform extraordinary acts in the face of emergencies. To find out more, contact our Volunteer Services office at 540-2662-5412.
Chris Scott, executive director, Top of Virginia & Shenandoah County Chapters, American Red Cross