Landowners should be wary and protect rights
To the editor:
The recent decision from Judge Washam in Wilson vs. Beck/Chesapeake (2013cv140) is an example of gas company overreaching and operating in disregard of the rights of landowners.
The lease in that case required the gas company to secure the landowner's permission before assigning the lease. After requesting and being denied permission, the gas companies proceeded to record the assignments in breach of the lease terms.
Mr. Wilson was forced to file the lawsuit to protect his interest, and the court voided the assignments.
This is not the only instance of lease assignment without permission of the landowner, as many other local leases had similar "consent clauses" in them that were disregarded by the drilling companies.
Former Chesapeake CEO Aubrey McClendon was quoted in 2008 as saying: "We make more money 'flipping' leases than drilling ..."
The leases are generally heavily favorable to the drilling companies anyway. Using their economic leverage and landowners' fear of litigation, the drilling companies often bully landowners into accepting unfair terms or unfair interpretations of lease terms, as in the consent clause.
The jury of public opinion is still out on whether the drilling boom will be a long-term benefit to local residents (and the nation), or whether only the drilling companies will be the primary beneficiaries. In the meantime, landowners should be wary and protect their rights.
(Formerly of Salem)
Concert benefitting Lifeline a big success
To the editor:
The nearly 300 people who attended the benefit concert sponsored by Lifeline of Columbiana County Pregnancy Center recently were fortunate enough to enjoy four world class musicians together on the same stage, a rare occasion for Salem or other communities of our size.
Eric Genuis, the pianist, composed all of the musical selections and he was accompanied by Kathleen Buccleugh as soloist, Brian Bak as violinist, and James Rosenbloom as cellist.
All four have the ability to perform a solo concert, thus having them appear all together was phenomenal. There was never a boring moment but instead silence, awe, and applause for the amazing talent we had the pleasure to hear.
Eric's compositions and piano playing had such energy and passion that there was not a dry eye in the audience after many of the selections. This was especially true after Kathleen sang the last song of the afternoon, "Here I Am," which Eric had composed during the time that his Down syndrome daughter underwent heart surgery to save her life.
Eric was educated at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, Canada, where he received First Class Honors in Piano Performance, and he has also completed course work in film scoring at the Berklee School of Music.
Currently he performs up to 200 concerts per year including large venues, schools, prisons and private homes. He has received acclaim from John Debney, film composer for "The Passion of Christ" and "Spy Kids" and Joel Sill, Music Supervisor for" Munich" and "Forrest Gump."
Kathleen Buccleugh had the voice of an angel and a marvelous range. Her singing of "Panis Angelicus," of which Eric wrote his own music for the lyrics, was beautifully done.
Her "vocalise," whereby she sang only using her voice without lyrics, was exceptional. She received her bachelor's and master's in voice from the University of Alabama and has appeared in numerous solo recitals and operas in New York City and Alabama.
Brian Bak, immigrated from Seoul, South Korea, 21 years ago and began his violin instructions in the United States at the age of 7. His multiple scholarships and bachelor's and master's degrees from the Julliard School of Music in New York and attendance at Yale University School of Music were exemplified by his superb, flawless, and amazing performance.
He has served as principal of the Juilliard Orchestra and the Juilliard Chamber Orchestra, and performed with the former on a summer tour in China. Brian will begin his doctoral studies in music performance this fall.
James Rosenbloom played the cello in a way we had never heard before. Normally a cello is a mere accompaniment, but he played with such passion and deep, solid tones that were very pleasing to the ear.
He began playing the cello at age 9 and received his bachelor's of music degree from Louisiana State University and has performed with symphonies in Baton Rouge, the Cincinnati Conservatory, and Chautauqua, N.Y. He has also performed in Italy, Costa Rica, and Jamaica. Following the concert, James was traveling to a festival in New Orleans where he would be performing 50 selections.
I could go on and on, but needless to say this concert was above and beyond our expectations. I was confident the concert would be good, after the recommendations and raves from my brother, Don, who said, "We had the best concert I have ever heard" while wintering in Phoenix, Ariz. But until the concert began I had no idea how amazingly great it would be.
Eric, Kathleen, Brian and James played with such passion and emotion that it uplifted the audience into another realm where they had never been before. The beauty and melodies that I heard that day are still resounding in my mind.
Lifeline of Columbiana County wishes to thank everyone who contributed to the success of the concert, including but not limited to, area newspapers, especially, the Salem News for giving great coverage for the concert, the generous donors, the ticket sellers, the volunteers who helped with programs, tickets, flyers, and anything else needed, the pastors and churches who promoted this event, and especially the Winona Friends Church for its continuing help and support, and the Salem First Friends Church for graciously hosting this event.
Lifeline is particularly grateful to everyone who attended the concert. Your support will enable us to open a free pregnancy clinic, under a new name, which will offer ultra sounds along with other pregnancy tests in Northern Columbiana County.
GEORGE and THERESA MORRIS,
Board members, Lifeline of Columbiana County
Reader unhappy with Columbiana Council
To the editor:
Shame on the Columbiana City Council. The recently approved initial steps in developing a miner's "Man Camp" at the former Lake Front Golf Course in Columbiana has the community and schools extremely concerned.
A "Man Camp" is a hotel and or temporary housing facility built to house employees of the oil and gas industry. The New York Times noted that where developments like this occur: "sexual assaults, sex trafficking, prescription narcotic use, and violence have increased crime and overburdened an already overwhelmed police force."
After reaching out to the council directly to find out what action they were taking to stop this, only one returned the phone call, councilman Richard McBane, who stated "They can do this anywhere in the county, so why not in Columbiana where we can earn the tax revenue?"
Mr. Richard McBane, the safety of my family and my community is more important than tax revenue. The Columbiana City Council either has their priorities confused or are personally benefiting from the development.
To quote city leader Cyril Scott from North Dakota where a similar development was built, he noted: "The drugs come with it. The rapes. The sexual assaults come with it. All these things come with the 200-men man camp. I've seen the devastation done to communities."
I urge all of those in Columbiana and the surrounding area to contact the city council and express why they simply cannot destroy our community for their own self-interests.
Women's Night Out was a positive event
To the editor:
The Salem Community Center would like to thank everyone involved in making the fifth annual Women's Night Out a fantastic event. It is a positive feeling knowing the community of Salem and surrounding communities support the efforts of fighting childhood obesity through wellness initiatives.
The Salem Community Center's continued goal of empowering children to become active young adults who understand the importance of exercise and eating right is made possible through the direct efforts of Women's Night Out.
Money raised from the event will impact programming and the lives of local children over the course of the next year. We appreciate the enthusiasm of our sponsors, vendors, advertisers and participants. Donations from Salem Giant Eagle, Stark Memorial, Custom Images, Yuhanick's Cleaners and Thorne's Neighborhood Market helped to make the evening more enjoyable than ever.
Thank you again to the entire community for your involvement, it is rewarding to know that we service such a great community. Women's Night Out sponsors included: Salem Regional Medical Center, Sterling House, BOC Water Hydraulics, Inc., Copeland Oaks/Crandall Medical Center, Salem Radiologists, Kent State University Salem and East Liverpool, and Stitle Construction Corporation.
Additionally, we would like to thank our "Mini Spa" vendors who provided complimentary spa services all evening; Natural Solutions, Columbiana Massage Therapy, BodyCare Massotherapy, ArbonneInternational and Shelby Massotherapy.
Salem Community Center
Reader:?United District going after your money
To the editor:
Once again United Local School District is going after your money. On May 5, a permanent improvement levy is going on the ballot.
Seriously, take an honest look at those operating your school and how they distribute your money, before you consider giving them more money to do with as they want.
Fall of 2013 no raises were given to teachers, cafeteria workers, bus drivers, and other workers. New bus drivers get no insurance.
Yet the administration and board members all received a raise, plus health insurance offered. Why was health insurance offered school board members? If they are working people they have company insurance or Obamacare. If they are retired they should have planned their insurance as their retirement.
All employees are required to do drug testing as do most schools. But, there is talk of having employees do a blood test! For what? So, if something would show up they can refuse them health insurance or even fire them? It is none of the administration's or school board's business! Let alone it's an invasion of privacy! What nincompoop came up with this? Just leave people alone!
How about kids who can't pay for lunches are allowed to acquire a meal and then have it taken, just to receive a peanut butter sandwich instead. The food is then thrown out. Make sense to you, not me!
What about the psychological impact it can instill on these children? The embarrassment and hurt placed on them because of no money through no fault of theirs. How many do not eat at all, just to save face? Why not prepare an allowance in the school budget for all meals to be paid for K-8. If allocation can be provided for athletic transportation to and from games, why not feed the students in K-8 free?
In 2011 the superintendent, board members, and treasurer spent approximately $3,200 for a weekend lodging and meals in Columbus. It's only a three-hour drive from Columbus to Hanoverton. How much do you suppose has been spent in the past three years for meals and stay overs? Enough to pay for your children's lunches?
Talk is United needs 16-18 new buses. Nothing wrong with replacing buses. But why wait until you need that many at once. Why not four to five at different stages? Poor management?
Two classrooms taken and turned into offices for Viscounte and secretary at a cost of over $500,000. How do they benefit the students? Talk about "to be comfortable putting their heads on their pillows at night"(November 2013) how about it Viscounte and school board? Why not make improvements and upgrades to benefit the student body; not the administrative body?
Urges voters to back West Branch levy
To the editor:
On Tuesday, May 6, voters in the West Branch community will be asked to decide a very important issue. It is the West Branch School District income tax levy, and for the following reasons, I hope it passes.
An income tax school levy is fair. It is based solely on an individual's ability to pay. Please note that Social Security is not subject to this tax.
West Branch currently educates children for $9,015.00 per student. This is $1,585 less than the state average of $10,600 per student. I think our children deserve better than this. After all, they are our future.
For the past five years, West Branch has consistently earned the state's top ranking of "Excellent" or "Excellent with Distinction." In 2013 the State Report Card converted to an A to F ranking system and West Branch proudly earned an "A." If West Branch hopes to continue this excellence, adequate funding must be secured.
Remember, a positive vote for the West Branch school levy is a positive vote for the future. I hope you'll join me on May 6 by voting in favor of this very important issue.