As I am only allowed one letter per month, I thought I would comment on recent incidents and news stories that were in The Inter-Mountain.
I was more than a bit dismayed to read in the March 9 paper that Darlene Phares was no longer employed in the sheriff's office. I don't know what happened and probably never will because the county commission and the Sheriff's office do not feel that the public has a right to know anything they do, unless it is going to make them look good.
Darlene has been with the sheriff's office for many years and I find it hard to believe she would have left voluntarily. She will be missed. I have had the good fortune of knowing Darlene for many years and she is, quite simply, a class act and a finer person has never walked the face of this earth.
Mike House was asking about around-the-clock coverage by the deputies. I believe it would take a lot more than 10 deputies to provide 24-hour coverage for this county.
If Mr. House is so concerned about that (and it is a valid concern) then he should contact the Legislature to appropriate more money so more state police officers can be hired so Randolph and other counties could have law enforcement on duty 24 hours. Keep in mind, Randolph County is a large piece of real estate. How many officers will be enough? Also, are we willing to pay the extra taxes necessary, state and local, to hire these extra officers?
Re: Mike House's (and others) call to open the county commission meetings with a prayer: Hang tough on that issue, commissioners. You will be opening a can of worms if you give in to that crowd. What church or denomination will be selected to give the prayer? If you decide to allow a pastor from a different church or denomination to give the prayer, what will you do if a Muslim Cleric shows up and wants to participate? What about a Hindu or Buddhist or Druid or any other religious figure? If you allow one, you must allow all.
Shelly Moore Capito said recently that she "has never seen the windmills turning." She must be driving the corridor at night. I drive that road several times a week and the windmills are almost always turning. Of course, for her to say that alternative energy is a good thing might be taken to mean she is against the coal industry. I am not anti-coal. I support it strongly; however, I want it done in a responsible and safe manner.