Letters, Letters to the Editor, Opinion

March 26 letters to the editor

Public forum with council candidates 

Local elections matter! On April 6, at 6 p.m. at the Hotel Morgan, there will be a second opportunity for the public to meet and question candidates who are running in the city council election to represent First, Third, Fifth and Seventh wards.  

For the first time, these councilors will be elected to four-year terms, and citizens owe it to themselves to be educated about where candidates stand on issues of importance to the community.  

This forum will be a non-partisan, moderated event and will be based on written questions submitted by the audience. It is important to remember that all registered voters who live in the city will vote for these candidates, and the winners will make decisions for us all, not just for their ward constituents. 

In the 2021 election, only about 7.8% of qualified voters made decisions that impacted the whole community. In fact, we have to remember that Morgantown City Council doesn’t just make decisions that impact city residents — decisions made here can have major impacts on people who live in other areas of Mon County. It’s our responsibility to elect the best candidates, and I sincerely hope that more than 7.8% of us will take that responsibility seriously in this election. 

Early voting will run from April 12-22 at the Train Depot, Hazel Ruby McQuain Park. Polls are open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and on Saturday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Election Day will be April 25 and polls will be open 6:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Absentee voting is allowed in certain circumstances which are explained on the city clerk’s website https://www.morgantownwv.gov/590/Voter-Information

Vicki Conner 

Praise for Pike pothole patching was too soon 

As Glenn Walker’s letter in the March 19 edition described, there are far too many road hazards in and around Morgantown.  

I, too, would rather have seen the surprise state surplus used for fixing roads and our other ongoing governmental issues than to fiddle with the taxes and probably lead us back to bigger problems before too long. 

In my Feb. 19 letter to the editor, I mentioned that I was pleased with pothole patching on the Kingwood Pike’s Monongalia County side. 

I spoke too soon. 

Not long after that letter was published, I drove the Pike again and was appalled with the number of potholes waiting for all of us. How did that happen? 

Selective patching had occurred during the previous month, but another round of traffic wear gouging out other old potholes had also occurred. The first effort had not been all that effective. 

The Pike again has a collection of terrible and dangerous obstacles in some sections. 

When my husband was being treated for lymphoma in Morgantown, he tried to be stoic, but the many potholes on the various ways to get to the cancer center made his tumor hurt. I tried to avoid them, but he and his tumor got knocked around far too much because of our pitiful road conditions. 

How shameful. 

He served in the military and had paid taxes all his working life, and our government couldn’t even provide a decent road to get him to treatment without adding to his pain. 

Deb Miller  

Preserving the Medicare hospice benefit  

President Carter’s decision in mid-February to enter hospice is a choice more than 27 million Americans have made, with increasing numbers selecting this option as more people get to know hospice care.  

In 2019, 1.61 million Medicare beneficiaries were enrolled in hospice, and, according to new research by NORC at the University of Chicago, hospice saved Medicare $3.5 billion that year. The research also found in the last year of life, the total costs of care to Medicare for beneficiaries who used hospice was 3.1% lower than for beneficiaries who did not use hospice. What’s more, the longer people spend in hospice, the greater the savings to Medicare — a critical point as policymakers look for ways to extend the Medicare Trust Fund.  

Unfortunately, a proposal by the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission to cut hospice spending will threaten the future availability of this important service. As a consultant serving hospices in West Virginia and hundreds across the country, I hope Reps. Miller and Mooney and Sens. Capito and Manchin will protect this vital service for our state’s residents. 

Ted Cuppett