Letters to the editor - Saturday (9-14-2013)

  • Posted: Saturday, September 14, 2013 12:32 a.m.

Rather than point fingers, let’s find a use for books

People need to step back, take a deep breath and think. If there are usable books that the school system does not need, it is great to find that out.

Let’s determine if there is a way to reuse them. That is better than recycling. Ask for public volunteers’ ideas on how to pick the books up from the schools and distribute. One way I can think of is to have the schools accumulate books for a quarter and let volunteers pick them up for delivery to the public library. If the library does not want them, they could be taken across the street to the Farmers Market and given away. It would probably draw more people to the public library and the Farmers Market.

If that does not work, I am willing to volunteer to explore other methods of reusing the books, like involving churches. Some kids may not have any books at home. It is worth a try.

— John Leatherman


Stop the petty squabbling

I don’t think that Rowan County can afford to wait out the terms of office of commissioners Jim Sides, Mike Caskey and Craig Pierce to halt the damage being done to its reputation and its ability to attract new business.

Would you locate your business in a county that thinks so little of its public education system and school administrators that they continue to require them to operate out of multiple substandard office buildings 20-plus years after merging the two systems? The squabble between the county commissioners and the school board/city of Salisbury continues to spiral out-of control. Meeting this critical need does not appear to be on the commissioners’ agenda.

I applaud Jon Barber for his recent candidness on the central office issue. The city of Salisbury is located within Rowan County. Commissioners should represent the residents within the city limits of Salisbury just as equally as those without. It’s not Rowan County against the city of Salisbury. It’s not Rowan County against the school board. We’re all in this together!

Our school administrators deserve a decent working environment. All of this pettiness detracts from the education of our youth. Can’t a state law be enacted to allow for some type of recall election to replace commissioners who voters now feel are abusing the power entrusted to them? Let’s give Jon Barber and Chad Mitchell some colleagues that are willing to reach a solution. In my opinion, the citizens of Rowan County should:

1. Lobby for a recall election and replace those three commissioners as soon as possible.

2. If that is not possible, voters should replace them as soon as their terms expire.

3. And if, while exercising option 1 or 2, any of them get reelected, then we collectively deserve to be the laughing stock of county governments across the state.

— Alvin Park

China Grove

Food drive a successs

In June, the community first heard that the need was great at Cooperative Christian Ministry. Our Summer Food Drive began and the community heard from clients and CCM staff about how low pantry shelves were getting and how high the need had reached. Now, in September, we can say, “Boy, did the community respond!”

Thanks to the generosity of local businesses (On The Run, Cannon Pharmacy, KS Image Solutions, F&M Bank, Centerview Hardware and the Independent Tribune) who sponsored the 2013 Summer Food Drive as collection points for non-perishable food, CCM collected 22,253 pounds of food! The community responded by bringing food to those drop off locations as well as the 10 pantries in the CCM pantry network and even to their churches as part of the 1,000 Can Challenge. Youngsters even collected cans in response to the Kids CAN Too! challenge. In addition to all the food we collected, the community also donated enough money for CCM to purchase about 25,000 pounds of food from Second Harvest Food Bank. That is an estimated 47,000 pounds of food that goes directly to help the hungry in our community.

The community helped CCM get through the summer months, when need is highest. Children are out of school, and parents who depend on school feeding programs to provide a hot meal or two for their young ones are left wondering where the next meal will come from. In August, CCM distributed 55,000 pounds of food through our pantries. The only months we didn’t distribute more than 47,000 pounds of food this year have been February and March – when families receive tax checks to help offset food needs. To say the generosity of the community helped carry CCM through the summer is an understatement. Families continue to struggle, and the community continues to step up and help. CCM stands with the families of those provided food daily in saying, “Thank you,” to our community.

— Joanie Reeder

Joanie Reeder is a development associate with Cooperative Christian Ministry in Concord.

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