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DOCUMENTS


The Tentacle


September 24, 2009

Random thoughts:

Joan Marie Aquilino

Healthcare:

 

Chip away at the items one by one. Stop forcing insurance companies to have mandated coverage outside normal everyday items. IVF (In vitro fertilization) is one example. Do a basic coverage; with wellness visits and then, if you must, do an a-la-carte menu for the rest.

 

Let businesses co-op health insurance. A perfect example would be locally owned restaurants. Let them pool employees. One restaurant can't do much for 10 employees, but how about 10 restaurants with 10 employees each.

 

Both items could be handled without cost or drama.  Not exciting changes unless you are one of the lucky ones that could now have the opportunity to have insurance for the first time.  Obama wouldn't get the in your face excitement he's going for now but helping people one by one should be the ultimate goal. Pork and BS can’t be hidden quite so easily in single item reform.

 

* * * * * * * * *

 

Board of County Commissioners & Municipalities:

 

Drama . . .Drama . . Drama ! Stop all the back and forth. Use your offices as they are meant to be used and stop the bickering of “he-said-she-said attacks. There is plenty of blame to pass around for all sides. Even when either or both sides have valid points, they get lost in the petty drama that plays out in the back and forth trumping of "I'm the Boss of You" games.

 

* * * * * * * * *

 

Board of Education:

 

Still at it! I want to see the criteria used to give bonuses to the school board’s one and only employee. The one employee they have happens to be part of the Board of Education, so I would imagine part of the process deciding what that criteria will be to give themselves, raises, negotiate their own contact with themselves since the employee/attorney is the superintendent's employee not the school boards.

 

I'm not even blaming the superintendent. Heck, if those around you are fool enough to let you get away with it, why not. Legally right and ethically wrong is a tough call for many.

 

No money for recycling; no money for buses; no money for classroom teachers’ raises; no money for diving boards; no money for real cuts, not even money to do repairs on their offices. Let’s not forget that huge savings of $20,000 by refusing to let children who bring their lunches to school to have a plastic spoon should they forget or break their own.

 

Is that bonus worthy? What about the two million squirreled away to forward fund their own office building? Oh, and don't forget the added – though rarely mentioned – parking cost associated with this building. We the taxpayers will end up paying the parking bill, too. Anything in that list scream bonus?

 

* * * * * * * * *

 

Board of County Commissioners:

 

You've spent the better part of your term undoing what had been done the previous four years. These extremes have got to stop. It's a waste of taxpayers’ money doing and redoing the same things.

 

You did to the town of New Market exactly what you claim Frederick City is now doing to you. You were willing to take rights away from the town to grow, but instead of not allowing any growth you were going to stick your 'kind' of dense growth in an area neighboring the town but in the county, and dump it's traffic into the town with no chance of the town being able to annex it now or in the future because it was just over the border enough and they wouldn't be able touch it. Hello, doesn't anyone get it. You can't call out Frederick City for the same things you do to others. Linganore is to New Market what Ballenger and Cloverhill are to Frederick City. I completely understand Frederick City wanting to get their hands on the land knowing the flip-flopping that goes on at Winchester Hall. Maybe Jefferson Tech (not so much Tech anymore) Park should be within the City of Frederick limits. The Ballenger area certainly should have been, as well as the FSK corridor. The city is pretty well shut down to the south which was its logical growth area.

 

* * * * * * * * *

 

Municipalities:

 

Many of you aren't any better. Brunswick, as an example, had an Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance and got hurt by doing the right thing and playing fair because other municipalities that didn't. The county was left having to put the schools and money in those areas. That is wrong on every level. Frederick City you need to take ownership for the burden you are about to put on the roads, in the schools and for the welfare of all this build out will affect. You are no more an island than the county is the boss. Growth should bring benefits – not harm – to an area. 

 

* * * * * * * * *

 

Referendums:

 

Yes I know they are legal, but are they beneficial and, if so, to whom? At this time I'm seeing them more and more as a fad, the chic thing to do, a way to get a do-over. Go all the way back to Gov. Martin O'Malley and the referendum on slots. This was his way of taking the heat off himself and dumping it on the voters. What did it accomplish?

 

The community activist types are now using this method to stop annexations all over the county when they could have forced their presence and been part of the ‘process.’ No, not enough excitement that way; better to wait and use it as a political tool and gather signatures for ‘causes’ and ‘campaigning’.

Penn & Teller’s video banning water shows how people can be talked into anything. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yi3erdgVVTw.

Community Activist learned this lesson well.

 

My only advice is, do your own research and, if you don’t, then shame on you. Your vote is your voice, not your signature; others are using your signature to have their voices heard  . . .  no vote, no voice very simple. Trust – but verify first.

 

 

’til next time . . .



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