Volume 14, Issue 6 ~ February 9 - February 15, 2006

Letters to the Editor

We welcome your opinions and letters – with name and address. We will edit when necessary. Include your name, address and phone number for verification. Mail them to Bay Weekly, P.O. Box 358, Deale, MD 20751 • E-mail them to editor@bayweekly.com. or submit your letters on line, click here

Public Campaign Financing Takes the Dirty Work out of Politics

Dear Bay Weekly:

It’s difficult for this reader to express the surprise of others at the Abramoff-DeLay et al. lobby scandal, because the solution is so obvious and has been available for so long. I have been an ardent advocate of that solution throughout my career, i.e., public financing of election campaigns.

Public financing will remove from politics and government the Middle Man, aka The Special Interest, aka The Lobbyist. Government then would just be a relationship between the voter and the elected official. With such dramatic reform, the First Great Experiment in Democracy might avoid the fiscal and moral bankruptcy to which our current leadership is taking us.

—Bill Burlison, Odenton

You Have Clean Energy Choices

Dear Bay Weekly:

At the 2006 Public Forum on Clean Energy in Charlotte Hall, over 60 people gathered to discuss what we can do about our rapidly changing climate — not whether a furry Pennsylvania rodent saw his shadow that morning. The Southern Maryland Greens and Sierra Club sponsored the program.

St. Mary’s County Commissioner Larry Jarboe advocated driving electric or hybrid vehicles. He also announced that St. Mary’s County will install a large tank to operate county heavy equipment on bio-diesel fuel in a year-long test of reliability. (Contact: 301-475-4200x1351 or bocc@co.saint-marys.md.us.)

Shannon Schmidt of Solar Tech, Inc. gave detailed examples of how installation of solar panels of photovoltaic would increase homeowner self-sufficiency and reduce monthly electric bills. (Contact: 301-373-3318 or scschmidt@smcm.edu.)

SMECO energy and technology manager Mike Rubala, detailed the energy-saving benefits available through the PowerWise residential conservation program. In addition to tips on many steps that you can take yourself, SMECO offers several low-cost inspection packages that include rebates on energy-saving products and free electric waterheater insulation, water-saving showerheads and faucet aerators. (Contact: 888-440-3311x4478 or www.smeco.com.)

Josh Tulkin of Chesapeake Climate Action Network described the impact of rapid climate change on Maryland coastal areas. The Maryland Healthy Air Act currently before the General Assembly will solve the serious problem of power plant pollution, he said. It closes the loophole that allows old power plants to emit more pollution than EPA standards. Citizens can contact their state delegates and senator to support this bill. (Information at 301-891-6726 or www.chesapeakeclimate.org.)

—Frank L. Fox, Mechaniicsville

Dear Readers

We’re seeking stories from Chesapeake Country citizens who have had problems with mold in their homes. If you’ve been affected and would volunteer information, please email a brief explanation of your experience and your contact information to editor@bayweekly.com.

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