Saturday/Sunday, July 23-24, 2011: Food banks, trash fees, volunteers for Millinocket

Posted July 22, 2011, at 3:49 p.m.

No strings attached

I am writing in support of the comments in Pastor Ian Shearer’s July 19 Letter to the

Editor concerning the Good Shepherd Food-Bank and its treatment, or mistreatment, of

I Care Ministries and Pastor Herschel Hafford. This is my personal opinion and doesn’t

necessarily reflect the position of any organization I belong to.

I have worked with Pastor Hafford for many years in my position on the Benevolence

Committee of First Congregational Church. We have supported the charitable programs

of I Care Ministries and referred many people to them for fuel and food assistance.

I have never known of anyone being refused assistance because of their lifestyle or

because they didn’t attend services there. If everyone who received assistance through

I Care Ministries attended their services, they would need a much bigger building.

My American Cancer Society Relay for Life team has also received generous support from I Care Ministries for the past three years with no strings attached.

The fact that Good Shepherd Food-Bank canceled its agreement with I Care Ministries

without notice and without giving Pastor Hafford a chance to answer the claims

suggests to me that its supposed reason for termination would not stand up to close

scrutiny.

I have made donations to Good Shepherd Food-Bank in the past because I thought they got a lot of bang for the buck and that they were a reputable and efficient organization. I will be directing my donations elsewhere in the future.

Carl Akeley

Millinocket

Hold off on trash fees

At this time, the Queen City is undergoing some very positive changes. The arena, waterfront and even our revitalized downtown are great examples of this city moving forward. Remarkably, we have accomplished many of these goals in the depths of a recession.

One of the proposed changes we are currently considering is the single-stream, pay-per-bag program. It is simple — each household pays for the amount of garbage used by purchasing special garbage bags, and the items we can recycle will be picked up without a cost. Basically, we are each responsible for the cost we incur.

This entire process is being looked at due to the expiration of our contract with Orrington’s PERC plant in 2018. There are a lot of unknowns about how much our PERC fees will increase in that year, but some anticipate the new price could as much as double.

After listening to the community and giving this much thought, I have decided that I am not in favor of moving forward with this system until 2018. We are in the middle of a recession and people are struggling. At this time, having an increased cost for trash bags is not acceptable.

I believe that having a residential trash pick-up program is one of the basic services that Bangor provides to our citizens and people seem to like it. When we renegotiate our contract, things will likely have to change. But in 2011, I will vote to uphold this basic service.

Charlie Longo Jr.

Bangor City Councilor

Other debt options

Why are those in Congress allowing this debt reduction discussion to be limited to the political hot button areas of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and taxing the rich?

What about the huge sums sent to Petrobras to fund undersea drilling off Venezuela for the benefit of Chavez and Soros (and the output will be sold to China)? What about the millions we are gifting to “friends” like Cuba and Chavez and many other countries which consistently vote against our interests in the UN?

What about millions spent on welfare and health care for the hordes of illegal aliens in this country? Deport them.

Declare victory in the unwinnable wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and bring the troops home and put some of them on the Mexican border.

Roger W. Hannemann

Camden

For the good of town

I am proud to be one of the members of a previous Board of Selectmen who hired Muriel Smith to be our administrative assistant, tax collector, etc. Muriel started her job under very difficult circumstances when the administrative assistant resigned.

After holding interviews, Barbara Drisko, Bill Layman and I hired Muriel for this position. I believe our trust has been proven by the fact that Muriel has been re-elected to this position and has served our town capably for the past 13 years.

During the past year we have lost the services of three outstanding employees, seemingly due to the actions of a handful of people outside the town office. At times we have all had our differences, not only with Muriel, but among ourselves. Most of us have been adult enough to walk away and work through the problems. We have put aside our differences and worked for the good of the town.

Unfortunately, I suspect that if the right person is not hired by the selectmen, there will be difficulties for the new administrative assistant. Sadly, I believe that this is inevitable.

I wish the board well in its search for a new administrative assistant.

Geri Moore

Columbia Falls

Volunteers for Millinocket

My wife and I were born and brought up in Millinocket, returning after being away for almost 20 years. We left in 1986, after is was announced that GNP Co. was going to lay off employees and scale back its operation. We returned after retirement because this is where we felt our home is.

We found many changes had taken place, the least of which is the loss of the vitality of young people between the ages of 21 and 55.

We are a town of retired people. We are the ones who pay the taxes, keep our property up and try to support the things that matter in the community. Right now we are the life blood here in Millinocket. How is the local government looking after our interests?

I think Millinocket has made itself irrelevant in the discussion about the changes that are coming to this area whether they want the changes or not.

Millinocket has a need for leadership from our local officials. The council lets events dictate its actions. The idea that the return of jobs in the mill is the only option is hurting our ability to participate in meaningful changes. Changes are coming, and to have any effect on the outcome, the town needs to be involved.

Could an advisory group of senior citizens help town officials make these difficult decisions? If we don’t get this right, we may not get another chance. We are willing to become involved.

Larry and Joan Carr

Millinocket

Rich live, poor die

Mr. LePage’s new MaineCare policy: The rich will live and the poor will die. It’s that simple.

Does he call himself a Christian?

Anna Durand

Bar Harbor

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