TALK TO YOUR LEGISLATORS!
On Thursday, December 10, from 7 to 9 p.m. our League will host a Legislators Forum. It will be held at Suncrest United Methodist Church, 479 Van Voorhis Road. The forum is designed to let the legislators tell the public what their priorities and proposals are for the upcoming Legislative session, and for them to hear from you about your hopes, needs and concerns. In the past this forum has led to very fruitful discussions between the public and the legislators.
The legislators will be given four minutes to discuss their interests in the upcoming session, and the public will then have the opportunity to voice their requests. After the forum there will be refreshments and time to talk individually with the legislators. Please plan to come!
Democracy is tough, people always seem to be in disagreement, and, to the untrained observer, nothing seems to get done. Maybe that is why people tell me on an increasing basis that politics do not interest them anymore. Nobody said it was going to be easy; a government ruled by the people has always been difficult from the very beginning, but the alternative was to be ruled by a monarchy where the voice of the common person would not matter. Some people want lots of change, and that’s OK, and other people don’t want any change at all, and that is OK too, because through the convening of humans, good government ultimately does succeed in seeking out the Goldilocks Zone, where our life can happily exist regardless of the differences in the views of our representatives. This is why the League is enamored by people who choose to exercise their right to vote, because that very right, so hard won, is the foundation on which people can have a voice in their own government. – Jonathan Rosenbaum
Members from the Natural Resources committee went to the Green Team presentation on Recycling in Morgantown and Monongalia County. The message was that single stream recycling offered by Republic Services to the city has been very effective in increasing tonnage of materials recycled from 198 tons in 2012 to 892 tons in 2014. However many citizens of Morgantown are still not recycling, even though they are paying for it. They recommend that we encourage our neighbors to recycle. The Republic representative also said that they removed the recycling bins from many student neighborhoods because the students were using them as garbage cans and contaminating the recycling materials.
In the county there are two places to do single stream recycling: the Walmart on Hornbeck Road every Saturday from 7 to 11 a.m. (except not the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Nov. 28); and in Westover next to the City Building on Dupont Road, Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. County Commissioner Tom Bloom reported that right now that is probably what will be available for some time, since having Republic pick up once a week in each of these places is what the County can currently afford.
Another issue that the Natural Resources committee is studying and wants to take action on is climate change and reducing greenhouse gases. John Bird presented an overview of the subject at the Natural Resources meeting on November 11. Members resolved to become more informed on the subject, to become better at educating others about the dangers of human activity, to lobby our legislators to take action, and to write letters to the editor. The National League is also encouraging all League members to lobby our members of Congress to support Obama’s Clean Power initiative.
There were a few NR members at the Water Forum sponsored by the Green Team: Linda Yoder, Judith Wilkinson and Jonathan Rosenbaum. Basically, the most interesting tidbit we learned there is that currently Monongalia has the cheapest water bill rate in the state. The new increase will push us up slightly to the 6th cheapest place in the state.
Here are links to the Green Team videos:
How Clean is Morgantown’s Air and What Can We Do About It? – https://youtu.be/pmm3fQCEN3Q
How Clean is Morgantown’s Water and What Can We Do About It? – https://youtu.be/cSUNR0NDVq4
Is Recycling Working in Morgantown and What Can We Do About It? – https://youtu.be/2P2Jl4Xpggc
OCTOBER MEMBERSHIP MEETING
The Secretary of State’s office and the League of Women Voters of Morgantown-Monongalia County are calling attention to two very important changes for voters in WV. A new law was passed in the 2015 Legislative session which makes the May 10, 2016 Primary Election even more important than ever. That law requires that the election of justices of the Supreme Court of Appeals, circuit court judges, family court judges and magistrates be on a nonpartisan basis and that candidates for those positions will be elected on the same date as the primary election.
At our Membership Meeting October 14, Briana Wilson, Communications Director for the Secretary of State’s office, informed attendees that the process for electing judicial candidates will follow the current process for electing school board members. On May 10, Mon County voters will be electing one Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeals, three circuit court judges, two family court judges and four magistrates. The Secretary of State’s office and the League of Women Voters will be distributing further information reminding voters of this important change. Ms. Wilson also introduced the new on-line voter registration process, which is available at https://ovr.sos.wv.gov.