2017-08-18 / Letters

Service-minded are in short supply these days

To the editor:

I enjoyed reading Chief Thurlow’s commentary about the Pine Point Ladies Auxiliary in the July 28 issue of the Leader. The more I learn about the history of the place I decided to raise my family, the more I love this town.

Unfortunately, I think the chief is right about dwindling participation in volunteerism and civic organizations. Don’t get me wrong, the active organizations we have here in Scarborough accomplish a lot relative to their small volunteer pools, it’s just that I see the same faces at each event.

In fact, I’m pretty convinced at this point that Nancy Crowell, in addition to running a top notch library on a conservative budget, has mastered cloning technology in her spare time. How else could one woman be in so many places?

The same is true for many of our other town leaders. Julie Kukenberger, our superintendent, can’t possibly have time to sleep with all she’s accomplished during her first year in town.

Our public safety personnel always seem to be going above and beyond the call of duty; and many of our town and school officials have dual roles in service organizations.

Kelly Murphy, board of education chair,man also volunteers with Project G.R.A.C.E., where she’s an instrumental part of efforts to get food to people in town who need it.

Kate St. Clair, vice chairman of the town council, runs a charitable foundation in memory of her son, Kyle. Many of our town councilors have also served on the board of education, but I don’t think that should be a reason to discount their commitment to their current roles.

In today’s fast paced world, the pool of folks willing to serve their communities is limited. I am thankful to all who saw a need for their service and stepped up to fill it.

We can disagree with the decisions our leaders make, but calling their character into question as part of an effort to persuade people to vote a certain way is not only unhelpful, it flies in the face of the community values and traditions that make Scarborough a place I’m proud to call home.

And remember, while some people in town are trying to convince you that we have big spenders at the helm of our schools, we pay less overall per student, less in administrative costs per student, and we also pay our teachers less than our neighboring school districts; it’s a pretty tight ship even on years when we’re not below level services as we are this year.

As we prepare for the third school budget vote, let’s remember who we are, remember the return on investment we get for our tax dollars, and remember that the next generation of service minded people are currently watching to see, both how we treat our neighbors and how much we value their futures.

Erin Rowan

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