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Pay for your own recreation

| Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2014, 9:00 p.m.

Referring to the article “Armstrong trail work planned” (VND, Dec. 28), I ask: Why do we have to continue to drain our pockets to pay more dollars for recreation?

The article points out how wonderful this development is — at a cost of $36,000 from Kittanning's coffers and an additional $40,000 from the Allegheny Land Trust. While this sounds wonderful to those collecting the cash, these children installing birdhouses on the trail could be installing birdhouses made by the Progressive workshop at their own houses to monitor bird activity. Their parents can buy the birdhouses out of their own pockets.

The article reveals the total cost is $38 million for taxpayers to supply these grants across Pennsylvania.

Mr. Steffy, Allegheny Land Trust executive director, is happy with the sacrifices of the volunteers working these trails. How about some hurrah for the volunteer firefighters who have expanded areas to cover with the influx of more people in these trail areas — areas that are free from paying any taxes to offset the cost of their expansions?

Our dwindling volunteer fire departments already are stretched from a lack of resources, donations and man power. Added to that are the additional skills required for expanded duties, such as the Dec. 25 Indiana County gas well fire that had to be managed by volunteer firefighters.

These trails also require more diligence by homeowners who have them running parallel to their properties. These trails can open up more opportunity for possible break-ins and other undesirable activity.

Regina Liermann

Kiski Township

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