Cumberland deserves better

Published 12:18 pm Tuesday, July 17, 2018


I think that many people in Cumberland County are feeling that their voices and expressions of concern do not matter.

Why would a project of this magnitude that has potential negative impact on not only Cumberland but several surrounding counties be hidden from the public and “pushed through so quickly.”

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Many residents in Cumberland County are still unaware of this landfill. They do not know the size “mega landfill,” the impact on land values, water contamination, pollution, noise, odor, the wetlands and traffic.

The board of supervisors made it clear that they did not want the public to research this issue and have time to add input or at least to try to get this issue on the November ballot for the citizens to have their voice heard. The attitude, comments and demeanor of the board members clearly indicated that they were not interested in listening to the citizens’ concerns.

One of the board members referred to the citizens having “hissy fits” about the landfill. Another board member stated that all of the people that support the landfill were afraid to come to the meetings because “of the animosity of the crowd.” To my knowledge there were no disturbances at any of the meetings.

The board of supervisors appear to be a group of individuals that do not seem to be able to comprehend that this decision affects many of these citizens’ families, their life savings, their homes and property, the health, safety, and well-being of their family members and that of their neighbors. I think it is totally natural for these citizens to be upset and passionate about this issue.

A board member was quoted in the Cumberland Today that “we have been doing this for the last 12 years that I’m aware of and we don’t have much to show for it. We have only 2 miles of four-lane highway. We have limited infrastructure, no port, no interstate system, no airport, no rail, etc.” Well that comment should tell the citizens of the county that a change in leadership is needed!

Cumberland citizens must rally together and continue to express their concerns about this landfill and elect a board that is willing to sit at the table with all citizens, develop appropriate plans for the county’s economic growth, demonstrate mutual respect, understanding and honesty.

During the past month I have heard the board of supervisor members blame the citizens for no growth in the county, but I hear that our local county government does nothing to assist businesses in locating here, even after they have expressed an interest.

I’ve heard the prison mentioned many times; so why was that denied and turned down by the county when it would have created revenue and many jobs for local citizens, without such of a negative impact on our environment and potential health concerns for the citizens. What about Cobb Creek? Now I’m hearing board members say that Cobb Creek will only cost Cumberland County money.

Are we seeing a pattern of poor judgment, poor insight, poor planning, and poor decision-making.

Cumberland County deserves better.

Barbara Speas Bishop