Letters to the editor – Monday (4-21-08)
County had good reasons to oppose 150 annexation
There are clear and convincing reasons why the Rowan County Board of Commissioners resisted the city of Salisbury’s forced annexation even to the point of paying legal expenses to do so.
Is it really right to forcibly annex county residents and make them become residents of any city if they do not choose to be annexed? Likewise, is it fair for Salisbury citizens to pay the bills associated with forcing county residents into Salisbury? Where is the right to vote for either group of citizens? These citizens have no vote and therefore no voice.
Councilman Mark Lewis mentioned in his comments at Tuesday’s City Council meeting that he found it especially “distasteful” that tax dollars were used to fight this annexation. Interestingly, according to information given at the public hearing, the city spent over 16,000 tax dollars to pay the Centralina Council of Governments just for consultant work on this same annexation. Mark Lewis found nothing wrong that City Council planned to take at least 240,000 sales tax dollars away from county government after already taking $1.8 million annually through recent annexations. What did he expect the county commission to do? Commissioners’ pleas to find common ground before requesting a halt to the annexation had fallen on deaf ears at City Hall.
Was the fight to stop this forced annexation worth it? You bet! Rowan County now retains the much-needed sales tax revenue that helps to pay for schools, libraries, social services, health department, courts and jail. City government does not pay for any of these. Aside from doing what is morally right, the County Commission needs this funding to pay for essential services for both city and county citizens.
It is time to change North Carolina’s 1959 annexation law. That’s a vision most citizens can embrace.
ó Tina Hall
Tina Hall serves on the Rowan County Board of Commissioners.
See, people can make difference
The way I see this annexation mess is like this. I see that the people of Rowan stood up and were heard. I see that our rights as citizens were upheld. Because when the people tell our elected officials the way things should be, they should do it. I see that when the people of this country stand up and are heard (as one voice), things happen.
This is the way our government was set up to be. A government of the people and by the people. Somewhere along the way, we have forgotten that we have the power to get things done in this great country. Or have we been told this so much that we believe it? I have heard since I was a child “If there was something I could do, I would do it” … “I’m just one person, I can’t do anything” … “You can’t fight city hall.”
Now the City Council is trying to make us believe that you were not heard? They are saying that because so many people had signed up for city services, the city of Salisbury could not afford to go ahead with the annexation. I do not believe this. The way I see it is if all those people had signed up for city water and sewer and really wanted the services, where was their voice? Why were they not heard? Why were they not putting up signs saying, “Please annex us?”
Well, don’t you believe you were not heard. You did something, and you were heard loud and clear. I’m very proud of all the people that did not believe that they could not make a difference. I’m cheering for all of you that stood up and made a difference. Maybe others will see that they can make a difference, too.
ó Jeff Bost
Students, teachers are both winners
Recently a controversy has surrounded the Biggest Loser contest that was held at West Rowan High School during the first semester. A letter was written to the editor in response to the article detailing the contest. This letter stated that this contest placed the education of the West Rowan High students in jeopardy. However, students have another opinion. Many students have commented about the improved moods of the teachers since the start of the program. It is a proven fact that exercise increases blood flow and brain activity that can enhance teachers’ performances.
Another argument was that teachers should not be wasting their planning periods by walking. Whatever teachers may be guilty of, it is not wasting time. Many teachers arrive at school an hour or more before class begins and stay afterwards, sometimes until 6 in the evening. Many teachers often take work home with them, even on the weekends.
If planning periods are the only time a teacher can fit in beneficial exercise, then, by golly, I think it’s quite all right.
First and foremost, even before they are educators, teachers are role models. When students see teachers losing weight in healthy ways, it discourages young adults from seeking the “perfect body” through dangerous methods such as anorexia or bulimia.
Upon reflection, the benefits of the activity supercede any and all arguments in opposition.
ó Melani Lippard
Truckers lead way on gas protests
Did you see how the truckers tried to help us with the price of gas? They weren’t very organized or successful, but at least they tried. How high does gas have to get before we as consumers say enough is enough?
Companies are losing business; others are having to choose between paying bills or buying gas; and now food prices are rising. We need to do something so the gas companies will stop charging us so much. Consumers could join forces with the truckers and take a few weeks off until gas comes down.
If we showed gas companies that we aren’t paying ridiculous prices any more and prove it by not driving, then and only then would gas prices come down. Trust me ó if we as consumers don’t do something, it is only going to get worse not better.
Let’s do something now.
ó Stephanie Darby
Letters endorsing candidates in the May 6 primary should be limited to 150 words and must be received in the Salisbury Post newsroom by 5 p.m. April 30.