Friday December 21, 2012

Chief speaks out on Vernon cruisers

Editor of the Reformer:

I would like to set the record straight regarding inaccurate information regarding cruiser maintenance. The Vernon Police Department maintains its vehicles very well, and we do follow scheduled maintenance guidelines. We have very good mechanics working on our cruisers and they keep maintenance logs on all repair work that is done.

The 2005 Ford Crown Victoria, that is nearing 150,000 miles, should have been replaced two years ago. The fact the Crown Vic is still running is a testament to how well we do maintain our vehicles. No one could have predicted the mechanical issues we are having with the 2007 Dodge Charger. How much more of an appeal must I make in order to prove our position for the immediate need of a new cruiser?

I understand the Selectboard has a fiduciary responsibility. All of us in emergency services have a far greater responsibility. You cannot put a price tag on that.

Mary Beth Hebert,

Chief Of Police,

Vernon Police Department, Dec. 20

Retreat must keep patient care as top priority

Editor of the Reformer:

We write to express concern about the state of patient care at the Brattleboro Retreat. We have experienced the Retreat from a variety of vantage points -- mental health worker, social work intern and recipient of very supportive services.


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Recent changes include laying off a high quality psychiatrist (Dr. Roberta Bennett) and many specialized therapeutic service providers, such as art and recreational therapists. This results in longer waits for care and lesser trained mental health workers or teachers being asked to provided specialized services outside the scope of their experience.

We understand the challenges of the CEO and Board -- the need to maintain aging buildings and be competitive in the health care marketplace while providing quality services. We further appreciate the importance of the Retreat as a community minded institution whose jobs are critical to a vital Brattleboro.

What we ask is that all decisions be made from the perspective of the best possible patient care.

Leo Schiff and Joy Hammond,

Brattleboro, Dec. 15

A reflection on life
and living

Editor of the Reformer:

Walking along the dark streets of this Wantastiquet river basin town affords the best views of the broad expanse of our New England night sky where, as Longfellow writes, "The fountain of perpetual peace flows there."

The constant stars are my companions on a clear night. So near they are, yet so far away, reachable, but untouchable which prick my consciousness into turning my gaze straight up.

It’s the stillness in the whole host of stars that wordlessly beckons me to stand firm in a perpendicular trance. There I was with both feet on the ground with my head facing the random formation of constellations on this cold December night.

And then, in one unmediated peaceful moment, an orange ball suddenly appeared from nowhere. In three blinks of an eye it etched a long lofty line of light before falling back and vaporizing into its armageddon blackness from whence it came.

Is not a falling star a metaphor for life? From nothing to something to nothing; a line of yellow that leads the eyes to see it for only a moment so that you have to ask yourself, "Was that for real?" Real or not, like much of human life itself, it is an unforgettable experience that is too often burned up too fast ... and where you have to see it to believe it.

Vidda Crochetta,

Brattleboro, Dec. 17

Rep. Moran reflects
on state budget

Editor of the Reformer:

We, the people, are the government of Vermont.

We elect representatives to create a state budget that, by raising and spending money, puts a voice to our priorities. At present, however, we often budget backwards, starting with a set amount of revenue, and then using it to fund existing programs.

A forward way to budget is to first determine what our needs are, decide how these needs can be met and then find the necessary revenues. This forward way creates a budget which carries out our governmental commitment to ourselves.

To show clearly how the budget works, we need to be open, listing all the money raised and how all of it is spent. Revenues that would be raised by taxes, but are not, because of exemptions or credits (called tax expenditures), are, by default, expenses. Thus, over a billion dollar a year, that we give away in tax expenditures, should be shown in the expense column of our budget.

By being forward and open, we can create a genuine people’s budget.

State Rep. John Moran,

Dover, Readsboro, Searsburg,

Somerset, Stamford, Wardsboro

and Whitingham, Dec. 18

Alumni honor Therieau

Editor of the Reformer:

I write this letter on behalf of the BHS/BUHS Alumni Association Board of Directors.

We would like to honor the late Mary Therieau by dedicating the annual reunion in June of 2013 in her name. Mary died on Nov. 24 after a short but courageous battle with cancer.

For those of us lucky enough to have known and worked with her, this is a huge loss of a person who attacked life with a smile on her face, a good word for everyone and the ability to bring sunshine with her wherever she went. Mary worked diligently on our board for many years and was a mainstay at the door of the Saturday night dance. To say that she will be missed is an understatement of great proportion.

More importantly, our thoughts go out to her wonderful family. To her husband, her daughters, her grandchildren, her mother, her sisters and her brothers, we offer our deepest sympathy. We hope that this small acknowledgement of who Mary was can bring some comfort to all of you.

As the 2013 reunion time grows nearer, I hope that the entire BUHS community will join us in honoring a life well lived: class of 1973, this especially means you.

Hope to see you all at the 2013 BHS/BUHS Mary Therieau Reunion.

Sue Strong,

BHS/BUHS Alumni Association,

Dec. 19