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Letters to the Editor

Letter to the editor: Westmoreland commissioners' 'accomplishments'

| Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2019, 12:03 p.m.

Our unimaginative county commissioners hired a Chicago firm and spent $309,000 on a far-reaching “Reimagining Our Westmoreland” plan which used the wrong assumptions that may cost millions to implement and ignores cost-of-living migration from the northeast.

When the commissioners change hands in January 2020, they can boast:

• Budget deficits spending our $60 million reserve fund down to around $5 million (I project it at zero next year based on deficits of $7.5 million each of the past two years). A $20 million capital improvement loan.

• Failure to attract employers; Sony plant underutilized.

• Poor judgment resulting in numerous lawsuits.

• Support of the Municipal Authority of Westmoreland County’s 39 percent rate increase, since they appoint board members — who in turn donate back to the commissioners’ campaigns.

• Rewarding large donors and friends with contracts and jobs.

•Overpriced no-bid contracts and project labor support.

• No apparent courthouse maintenance schedule in place, with $1.2 million in water damage repairs since 2010.

• No grant writer or volunteers to promote the county on social media.

• No standard design for municipalities.

• Targeting of the Westmoreland County Prison warden.

After a 15-year decline, are hemp production, more restaurants and embracing diversity the best they can come up with? The incumbents clearly timed their over spending with the end of this current term in 2019. I would hope that we find a Trump political outsider candidate with a real resume and integrity to fix these issues.

John Ventre

Hempfield

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