Nay: We sympathize with Frederick Alderman Roger Wilson. We too would have liked to have seen the city delay a water rate increase scheduled for July.

Wilson tried to get his fellow aldermen to consider a delay during a virtual meeting earlier this week. But they weren’t interested in his proposal to hold back the increase for six months. The aldermen initially approved the hike back in November.

We get the board’s reluctance. A delay could cost the city $615,000 in revenue, according to its estimates. And with COVID-19, the city is expected to see budget shortfalls elsewhere. But Frederick residents are likely going to face shortfalls too. So we’re with Wilson on this one.

Yea:

A horse walks up to a senior care facility and ...

What might sound like the first line of a joke was perhaps one of the oddest, yet, most uplifting acts we’ve seen during this stay-at-home pandemic.

Residents at Montevue Assisted Living and Citizens Care and Rehabilitation Center of Frederick were surprised Wednesday when three horses from Rocky’s Horse Rescue and Rehabilitation in Thurmont paid a visit. The horses didn’t go inside but they did parade around the facility as residents looked out their windows.

The same day, a couple of firefighters/EMTs, Derek Hartman and Bobi Jo Swartz, along with help from the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 3666 and some volunteers, took four horses, around first the Genesis Healthcare facility, followed by the Frederick Health and Rehabilitation Center and then the Somerford House.

Again, smiles around from all the residents and workers. Not a long face in the house. Well, except for perhaps the horses themselves. And that’s no joke.

Yea:

Jimmy Beldon has a very important job. The 55-year-old has been in the state and national spotlight recently as Gov. Larry Hogan’s American Sign Language interpreter during the COVID-19 pandemic. His job is to translate Hogan’s messages during press briefings for the deaf and hard of hearing community statewide. And we’re proud that he’s from Frederick.

We’re also happy that Hogan and his staff have made Beldon such a focal point during these briefings, ensuring that the vital information about the pandemic is available to the deaf and hard of hearing community.

Beldon’s hard work and dedication was even recognized by the governor earlier this week when he honored him with a citation on National ASL Day.

Congratulations, Jimmy, and keep up the good work.

Yea:

America’s military are currently fighting a very different war than what we’d typically be reading about.

And we’re glad they continue to show up like they always have.

Despite fighting an invisible enemy, members of the Maryland National Guard showed up this week armed with food and supplies for our city’s most vulnerable in a much-needed partnership with the city of Frederick. Frederick Community Action Agency is lighter on volunteers than normal due to the new coronavirus and the guardsmen have stepped in to fill the void and help provide those critical services.

They expect their services to continue and probably increase in the coming weeks. We see this as an excellent use of our military servicemen in dire times.

Yeas and nays is a weekly feature of quick-hit opinions from The Frederick News-Post’s editorial board. Send your suggestions to letters@newspost.com.

(16) comments

Greg F

I'd say you missed the biggest NAY in that the city that already has the HIGHEST PROPERTY TAX RATE IN THE NATION wants to raise it yet again, while many people already are in dire straights to boot. Come on now...why on earth? Are you telling me we somehow can't manage the city well enough that we have to charge more than the likes of San Francisco, NYC, Miami or any other municipality of any size in the entire USA? Really? What a nice marker to go by when wanting to by another or a first home in this area. We already let the likes of Dan Ryan and other prominent big builders rape our land and get away with perks that allow them to bulldoze forests and level mountains to plunk down more sub-par quality cookie-cutter homes...and then overcharge for those too. There is no doubt that as soon as humanly possible, I will sell every last thing I own in this municipality/county and get the bejezus out of here to some place else that doesn't take 2 years to put down a bridge and short little road without much of any consequence to the contractor. How many more tax breaks are you going to give to builders? I hope none...they aren't paying for the traffic jams we have, put a token in, if that on any schools needed for the increases in housing, and the city itself annexes anything of value to be able to squeeze out every nickle they can out of those who live here. Enough is enough...anyone at this point, Democrat or Republican who suggest increasing taxes needs to be voted out then put in the old fashioned pillories for a good ol' tomato and veggie throwing festival. Tar and feathers should be brought back with a ride out of town on a rail for any such politician. In the words of a famous character Howard Beale, "I'm mad as he11 and I'm not gonna take it any more!"

public-redux

“... the city that already has the HIGHEST PROPERTY TAX RATE IN THE NATION...”

Wow, you are incredibly uninformed.

Greg F

Here's just one stat: Frederick County has one of the highest median property taxes in the United States, and is ranked 148th of the 3143 counties in order of median property taxes. The city adds its own tax on top of that. County is in top 4% of all counties. Good try at a troll...fail.

public-redux

Ah, moving the goalpost. You’ve backtracked from highest in the country to not highest in the country. Loser.

public-redux

Property tax rates in Frederick city are not even the highest in the state. Look it up. It isn’t hard.

Greg F

PR...add the county tax to city...you get there. Either way, your moving goalpost champion is Trump who has 5 million tests due any time now then months later it's not nearly that and where is his miracle this will all just go away? Go peddle your papers elsewhere as there are more important things than worrying about who is #1 and #2...FredCo and Frederick municipality ARE the highest when I was reviewing stats and it still, for all practicality, remains so since simultaneously, the incomes aren't quite what other places that match this rate are. And I didn't say the city was the highest in the state...add county and city together.. Excuses, excuses...they're way too high and to add to it now is a kick in the nads.

gary4books

Spending is never the problem when it is productive and does more for the people than they can do on their own. The trick is to pick the best people (elected) to supervise the spending and make sure they spend where it is productive. That fixes the problem. But many vote for other social reasons and we get the government we get - and deserve. Frederick spends where it is necessary and they do respond to voter suggestions. Not perfect, but they are better than other places I have been.

Jaco

The City is also proposing a 2% increase in property taxes.

public-redux

Taxes or tax rates?

niceund

Just look at the newly released requested budget.....5% increase in water/sewer and 10% increase in storm water management. Atrocious.

MD1756

More importantly, what is the increase over time? It certainly hasn't gone up every year. What is atrocious is that funding for needed services haven't kept up with the needs because people complain and so politicians are reluctant to spend on infrastructure but they're more than willing to spend on things they can't afford like all day pre-k because it's like the chicken in every pot promise and many of the public are happy because they get something for nothing (or very little since they aren't taxed directly for the services they are demanding).

gary4books

Roger Wilson is right. Frederick people need some way to manage their water bills. A delay would be nice. But expensive to the City. However, there are new devices that give a better way to watch our use of water and to know when it is leaking down the train without any good use. These devices can alert us to water waste and help us save on our bills. Perhaps Roger and the other Alders can work out some way to get a discount on these devices or help people pay for them. I expect this to happen after he current problems are over. Better later than never.

TomWheatley

I remember that story about the deaf woman who was hit with a huge bill. The reason why I mention she is deaf is because she neither heard the water running and most of the flow alarms in the article activate a sound alarm.

That is indeed a concern, but perhaps more information on why the increase was proposed in the first place would have made for a balanced article. Was it because of more people, lots of high bills due to wasted water, high usage in general, delayed or no maintenance like what happened in Rosemont? Inquiring minds want to know the rest of the story. Where is Paul Harvey when you need him?

MD1756

The rate increase was needed because water infrastructure has not been 1) properly maintained and 2) has not been expanded sufficiently for the growth in the population. The citizens were lucky to have the rate increases put off for so long. Frederick has had violations of the CWA in the past and if it wren't for enforcement actions and a citizen suit against Frederick the water bills might still be cheaper and Frederick could still have much more serious violations than they recently have. For example, see: https://www.fredericknewspost.com/news/environment/pollution/frederick-sued-by-group-over-violations-at-wastewater-treatment-plant/article_314db407-504c-573b-82d3-4085effb0e60.html

gary4books

Flume web page: Water Status

Water not running

0.0gal/min

Not Running

As of 2:04 PM

Greg F

Add that you can get a low-flow decent commode for around $125 that takes 20 minutes to install yourself and that is practically plug-proof. Water and sewer use could be cut seriously if people actually put one in.

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