News from the Tennessee Valley Opinion
MONDAY, JUNE 18, 2007


Commissioner could do more to clean up state

To The Daily: This is in response to Linda Drzycimski’s letter to the editor. She wrote about eyesores and blight and made a reference to Commissioner Stacy George going to a city outside of Morgan County and threatening to sue that city if they don’t stop asking their citizens to clean up their junk-filled yards.

I find it odd that a person in Mr. George’s position would do such a thing, but you have to consider the company he keeps. A few weeks ago, Mr. George was on 101.1 FM in Birmingham talking about the steel company from Germany that is going to build a plant in Mobile. In this interview he kept referring to Madison County Commissioner Mo Brooks as his good friend.

So let’s talk about eyesores and Commissioner George’s good friend Mo Brooks. Many of Mr. Brooks’ campaign signs/eyesores are still up beside our highways a year after he was defeated for lieutenant governor. I counted 34 Mo Brooks signs nailed up to light poles along the highways in Cullman, Morgan, Lawrence, Limestone and Lauderdale counties just last week. There is no telling how many of these Mo Brooks campaign signs/eyesores are nailed up to light poles statewide. All candidates removed their campaign signs from the roadways last year after the elections were over, but not Mr. George’s good friend Mo Brooks.

Commissioner George kept saying during his time on 101.1 FM that he cares about Alabama and its citizens. If George means that, then he should stop threatening to sue Arab for telling its lazy residents to clean up their junk-filled property. He should go get Mo Brooks some Saturday morning and help him remove all of his eyesores from last year’s elections.

Dan Turner

Bill would streamline arthritis research funding

To The Daily: The Arthritis Prevention, Control and Cure Act has been re-introduced in Congress for the third time. The APCCA would, in part, establish pediatric rheumatology fellowships and a loan-forgiveness plan to encourage more medical students to pursue a career in pediatric rheumatology. Currently, Alabama is one of several states without a pediatric rheumatologist. The APCCA would also strengthen the arthritis research platform by ensuring that the limited federal funding for arthritis research is used in the most strategic manner possible. And the bill would expand public health response to arthritis by strengthening arthritis public health initiatives, which would ensure that more people are diagnosed early and avoid pain and permanent disability.

We are elated that Sen. Richard Shelby was an original co-sponsor of the APCCA 2007. As a respected veteran senator, his sponsorship of this bill (S.626) represents a significant contribution toward changing the lives of Alabama’s children and adults with arthritis. We are pleased that U.S. Reps. Spencer Bachus, Jo Bonner, Artur Davis and Mike Rogers are again co-sponsors of the House bill (H.R.1283). Sen. Jeff Sessions and U.S. Reps. Robert Aderholt, Bud Cramer Jr. and Terry Everett have now joined as co-sponsors, giving Alabama a “Clean Sweep” with U.S. policymakers. Alabama and Rhode Island are the only states in the nation with this distinction, leading the way.

Cindy Criswell Ducker
Arthritis Foundation, Alabama Chapter
Board member and state advocacy chair

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