No, Ka-Ching is not a writer of old Chinese proverbs.
Ka-Ching is the sound of cash registers ringing in unison in Chamber of Commerce member stores, at K. Hovnanian headquarters, and throughout the hallowed halls of county government in celebration of their victory over all the naïve Queen Anne’s citizens who were foolish enough to think they had a voice in what happens where they live.
I’m at a loss for words to describe the revulsion I felt when I heard that the voter referendum on the Four Seasons project was deemed deficient by the Board of Elections after the petition for referendum produced twice as many signatures as needed to put the issue to vote in the next election. And after county government had affirmed the legitimacy of the referendum in a public legal notice.
Keep in mind what the petition for referendum was all about.
It wasn’t a vote yea or nay on the issue itself.
It merely gave the citizens of the county the right to vote on the issue. It allowed people to participate in a decision that could significantly alter their quality of life, and have a severe and irreversible impact on the environmental riches that have set Queen Anne’s County apart from other areas of Maryland who have been less diligent about protecting their natural resources.
Now that citizens have been denied the right to be heard, the issue has been taken to a higher level.
In a representative government, what happens when the people have no representation?
Following are excerpts from letters written to the county commissioners during the past week. Judge for yourself what happens when the people speak and no one listens.
“It is clear from this latest action, and most of the other public processes I have witnessed or attended lately in the county, that the county leadership is increasingly out of step with a sizable and growing part of its constituency.” Frank DiGialleonardo, Centreville
“This is precisely what causes folks to throw up their hands in disgust, adopt a feeling of helplessness, and not bother to turn out for elections or get involved in the process. If this kind of powerless apathy is what the QAC government is striving for in its citizens, they have done a great job of it.” John Stinemire, Kent Island
“How can you, as servants of the people, ignore the expression of such a significant segment of the population when they are the ones who will be directly affected by this development?” Hamilton G. Walker, Jr. Stevensville
“The county government should speak for its citizens; however in this case they seem to have the developers best interest in mind. This, at best, seems to be spite, and, at worst, corrupt!” Chris Haley, Stevensville
“So much for representing the constituents of Queen Anne's County in an honest, upfront manner.” Andrew Spiegel, Chester
“This decision, regardless of what law you choose to hide behind, is a terrific example of elected officials not respecting the opinions, efforts and desires of their constituents.” Teresa A. Peruchi-Murphy, Chester
“The fact that our voice is not going to be heard on this matter is appalling. I thought this was a government by the people, for the people.” John Polcak
I have added one more citizen’s quote that, although written over 200 years ago, is still both relevant and timely.
" Elective government
is the best permanent corrective of the errors or abuses of those entrusted
with power." Thomas Jefferson
© 2000 - 2001 Bill
Evans. Used By Permission. All Rights Reserved.