Sunday’s Tribune-Democrat featured the typical pre-primary election article lamenting expected low voter turnout.
It’s a shame more people do not take an interest in these elections. The decisions made by our local governments impact our daily lives.
Through elections, we can help change our local communities and our region. I was recently told by a fellow council member that the status quo is good. Hearing this, I recalled the story of a CEO who said we have a hole in our boat and it was his job to get everyone to row in the same direction, never mentioning a plan to actually fix the hole.
With elections, we have the chance to impact our direction. Our region is a different place than it was a decade ago. We have a dwindling population, a stagnant job market, dropping revenues and oppressive regulations from state and federal agencies.
At the same time, we have to ensure certain services remain constant. We all deserve a well-trained and responsive police presence to respond to our calls for help. We all deserve a fully equipped and staffed fire/EMS service to keep us safe when fate or circumstance has different plans. We all deserve a safe community where our government serves us, and not the other way around.
I hope you voted in the primary, and I hope to see you at the polls this November.
Neighborhood problems are tied to housing
I witnessed the mud thrown by both groups running for re-election to city council. I am not a supporter of increasing Section 8 or public housing. We are overburdened with increased crime, loss of population and jobs, and now there are more renters than homeowners.
Where are these new people coming from and why? We have no jobs for them and there are empty homes everywhere, which makes it a feast for more Section 8 landlords.
We are forcing out people to rural areas and increasing government programs. This is not just in our area, but in many other areas.
Take a tour of the city and note the number of outdated, depressing-looking homes in need of work.
We need to make them more pleasing and safer for tenants and upgrade the community that surrounds them.
I read a magazine article about a mayor who took a stand on crime in his town, cutting crime by 40 percent. The Section 8 housing program has a huge budget. This type of housing can transport social problems into working-class communities, depressing property values.
Dishonesty, deceit too obvious to ignore
The dishonesty, deceit and lack of transparency in the Obama administration have become too obvious to ignore.
There is no way that U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice did not know that the attack in Benghazi was a terrorist attack, yet she perpetuated the White House-sanctioned lie of the anti-Islamic video.
The cover-up of Benghazi was a deliberate act to ensure the re-election of Barack Obama.
After eight months, the president is still looking for answers.
Now, the IRS has admitted to targeting conservative and patriotic organizations, and The Associated Press news service phones have been monitored. And, of course, the president will look into these incidents. He always looks, but doesn’t seem to find the answers.
We Americans are not dormant; we are fully aware of the deceit coming from the White House.
No longer rejecting ‘government tyranny’
Two weeks ago, President Obama stood in front of graduates at Ohio State University and told them to reject those who warn of government tyranny. He told them that these people said government tyranny was right around the corner.
I guess tyranny must have gotten a bus ticket from Ohio, because it has showed up in Washington, D.C.
Have you noticed lately White House press secretary Jay Carney? He lies so much his nose gets longer every day.
The Obama administration claims the only changes to the Benghazi talking points were stylistic in nature. I’m so glad members of this administration were not in charge of drafting our Constitution; they would still be at it.
The truth is dangerous to liars.
College frugal with Cambria tax dollars This letter is in reply to the Commissioners Corner article that appeared May 15 in The Tribune-Democrat.
We cannot respond to all of the issues in that article, but we will challenge the statement that Pennsylvania Highlands Community College has been extravagant with taxpayers’ dollars as they are allocated by our sponsor, Cambria County.
The article failed to mention that the $200,000 surplus described was a result of the increase in the dual-enrollment-program numbers (high school students earning college credits).
All Penn Highlands employees – including the president – agreed to a pay freeze in 2011-2012, which saved the college more than $100,000 that year alone. In 2013, employees received a one-time bonus of $200 each and $500 for six administrative employees, which cost the college $22,600.
The president’s bonus was a decision of the board of trustees based upon reasoning that our president is the lowest-salaried president in the state’s community college system.
Penn Highlands is the only college in the state system that continues to increase enrollment on a yearly basis. PHCC continues to expand and serve the needs of the citizens of central Pennsylvania.
Yes, it has been successful due in large part because it has an outstanding administration and faculty. It addresses the educational needs of Cambria County citizens.
Until now, it has been extremely affordable, and some of that affordability is because our county sponsors have been supportive of the college. The $150,000 reduction is a very difficult and concerning action that will have tuition impact on the county’s most valuable asset ... its citizens who are our students.
Kathleen O’Rourke, Ed.D.
Trustees, Penn Highlands Community College
Invest in students, not foreign companies
“Don’t worry about it, everything is fine,” said Commissioner Douglas Lengenfelder when I voiced my concern to him regarding the $150,000 funding cut to Pennsylvania Highlands Community College.
I am not sure how everything will be “fine” when students will be receiving the burden to pay for their education, while the commissioners fund foreign trade for wine-bottling operations with Cambria County tax money.
This business venture leaves our entrepreneurs of tomorrow, our youth and adult learners, to pay extra for their educations today. If they truly are worried about business in Cambria County, why not focus on the hundreds of jobs that are leaving – work with companies such as Northrop Grumman, DRS, CTC, NDIC, Gamesa and Lockheed-Martin?
Keep our local talent here, instead of bringing in foreigners with low-paying jobs.
Do they not think that they will bring some of their own workers and send the profits back to their families in Argentina?
I will not be patronizing a company when I know the money being used was pulled from local taxpayers’ pockets and those of students.
We as citizens should be concerned when out county leaders move funding from “community” to “foreign.”
I do not approve of my tax money being pulled from education.