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Westmoreland Laurels & Lances

| Friday, Dec. 15, 2006

Laurel: To Greensburg officials. Once again City Council is looking into eliminating the municipality's treasurer job as an elected position. Even Treasurer Robert DePasquale approves the change. The practice of electing municipal treasurers is antiquated, at best. But separate from the treasurer issue is the willingness of Greensburg's leaders to examine better efficiencies in local governance. That's laudable.

Laurel: To forward-thinking farmers. More than 30,000 have registered for the Pennsylvania Farm Premises Identification Project, a voluntary program designed to more rapidly curtail the spread of disease outbreaks among farm animals. It allows the state to issue timely disease outbreak information to farmers, such as symptoms to look for and whom to contact. And that should reduce unnecessary quarantines. This is not about counting chickens but about containing potentially deadly contagions.

Laurel: To the Unity Township Municipal Authority. A computerized system that helps monitor operations and maintenance at a wastewater treatment plant helped net the authority a regional award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The award, given in each of the agency's 11 regions nationwide, recognizes concerted efforts to help protect the environment. It also reflects the authority's commitment to public service.

Lance: To neighborhood speeders. They're obnoxious enough in the daylight. But some lunkheads evidently think nothing of burning rubber on local roads in the wee hours when good folk are trying to sleep. Whether at day or night they pose more than an annoyance. And in municipalities without local police, they're getting away with it. How about a little common sense if not common courtesy: Save your tires and ease up on the gas.

Laurel: To Cherry Tree council. Leaders in the quiet Indiana County borough shot down a councilman's wrongheaded recommendation that every homeowner have a gun and firearms training -- presumably for home security. The measure failed in a 6-1 vote. Given citizens' clear Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms, we're glad to see reason prevailed over empty rhetoric.

Congratulations: To Medic 10 in Mt. Pleasant. The all-volunteer emergency response provider is celebrating 30 years of saving lives. The group, formed in 1976 by 10 members of the Mt. Pleasant Volunteer Fire Department Rescue Squad, answers 600 to 700 calls yearly. The organization now boasts its own headquarters, state-of-the-art medical equipment and 26 active members. Here's to another 30 years.

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