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Water conservation

I really can not believe that people are worrying about washing their cars! Instead, people should be worrying about the farmers and their families.

People should be trying to conserve water because there isn't a big tank under ground that is just for your city water.

Why don't we try to do what our governor asks, and conserve water. Hey, it isn't going to hurt us, and in the long run it will help not only just the farmers, but everyone.

/s/ Tinalee Larson, Sunnyside

Schatz situation should have been handled better

When Bud Schatz became financial manager for the City of Sunnyside 20 years ago we had been hit with one major economic hit after another. WPPSS went down, PP&L and the phone company "downsized" their operations in Sunnyside, Carnation closed and so on. It was like a snowball rolling down a hill.

These were good paying jobs that we lost in this area. There were houses abandoned all over town because people just left, which meant a loss of property and sales taxes. It was a dark economic period and Bud Schatz played a very important role in helping steer the city through this period.

During this time period the city was able to keep its commitments to the library, and the citizens were willing to take on an ambulance service. If you really don't know the history of this period it might be hard to understand why some of the people in this town have very strong feelings about the ambulance. It was a challenging period and it took some courage and determination to take on the commitment.

I agree with Bob Story when he says that Bob Stockwell could have and should have gone over the (water and wastewater privatization) numbers. I suspect there were others who could have and should have also gone over the numbers. I think in some ways Mr. Schatz was used as a scapegoat. Even if the city had signed the contract it should have stayed even financially. The city should not have either lost money or gained money.

The bigger question for me was in the contract itself and how it was given to the public. The city really needed to have a contract lawyer go over it.

I'm not a fan of privatization. I feel it's a declaration of failure by the City Council and city management, especially coming a year after bailing out on the library.

After 20 years of loyal service to the city by Bud Schatz, I feel the situation could have and should have been handled better.

/s/ Carol L. Peterson, Sunnyside

Strange

city dealings

Thank you, Bob Story. The "Sacrifical lamb?" editorial column needed to be published.

It is my understanding that City Manager Bob Stockwell was for several months initially pushing to hire Veolia Water to improve the water problem instead of using our local personnel and at the same time save $289,851 every year. I find that strange.

I also find it strange that on Friday, March 4, 2005, Bud Schatz informed Bob Stockwell the savings would be only $23,810; and on March 5, 2005 not only was Bud Schatz not working for the city of Sunnysicde, but Art Housler was serving as the interim finance director. All this happened when Mr. Stockwell and the Council met on Saturday, March 5.

Why the secrecy?

Why was the city manager not responsible for the terms with Veolia Water?

Why was Bud Schatz not given a raise for discovering the $200,000 in expenses that were "left out?"

And where was Veolia Water when we thought $289,000 was a gift from them every year?

Strange!

/s/ Richard A. Kirk, M.D., Sunnyside

Bud Schatz the latest casualty

I would like to compliment Bob Story on his editorial, "Sacrifical lamb?"

First, we lost Fire Chief Jim Stanton, then Parks and Rec Director Tom Byers and now Finance Director Bud Schatz.

What I find most surprising is this episode regarding the different figures concerning the water department privatization issue. This happened on Saturday, March 5, 2005. On Tuesday, March 8, we already had a replacement in the finance director's office. Was this man already hired and waiting for the opportunity to take this position?

In the early 1980s City Manager Leo Fancey and the City Council deemed it imperative that we hire a parks and recreation director. Dave Fonfara was hired and we have had a director ever since, until Dec. 31, 2004, when Tom Byers' position was not funded. City Manager Stockwell assured the Parks and Recreation Commission that he would advertise for a new one as soon as possible. It is March and we have the former secretary of the department acting as parks and rec director, and as secretary and manager of the community center. How can one person fill three positions?

Summer is coming and we need a qualified parks and rec director to supervise the swimming pool staff and swim lessons, organize and run the Hershey track meet, organize the soapbox derby, plus the softball and little league teams.

Contact the City Council members and insist this position be filled by June 1, 2005.

/s/ Dorothy L. Aiken, Sunnyside Parks and Recreation Commission vice-chairman

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