Another Suffolk storm

Published 12:00 am Monday, July 25, 2005

Editor, the News-Herald:

Surprising Suffolk, here we go again. Saturday’s local news in the Daily Press indicates another surprise. This time our city officials are proposing a tax for storm water runoff. Runoff where? Could it be to fund more downtown projects? Once again, the rural areas of Suffolk will receive another tax bill with no benefit or explanation.

If you ask our neighboring Portsmouth/Chesapeake citizens about their storm water program, most have no idea what that tax provides.

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The timing for another tax proposal is absolutely amazing! Just after our city officials (mayor, city manager and public works director) campaigned and convinced the city to take over the road maintenance from VDOT, a new tax program is proposed. Maybe our city officials should ask VDOT to also kick in a few more million for storm water. Another tax program will require more high-paid department heads, low-paid workers and new equipment at the cost of all Suffolk citizens.

New programs to support the Suffolk for Tomorrow concept does not accomplish the numerous problems we are experiencing in Suffolk today. Currently, when calls are made to report right-of-way maintenance, overgrown properties or street repairs, it is not uncommon to receive an inadequate reply. I don’t consider, &uot;We don’t have time for a return call,&uot; a proper response.

Sure, the city can close off a major roadway because of years of poor planning by our city officials. However, when a major crisis develops on Route 58 and/or Route 17, the city storm water program will only be a drop in the bucket problem compared to the major storm that will occur because our city closed the Kings Highway Bridge on Rt. 125.

Millard T. Winslow