News and Tribune

May 1, 2013

NEWS AND TRIBUNE LETTERS — For May 1


Public Service Recognition Week May 5-11

Across the country and in communities like New Albany, federal employees protect and serve our nation. To honor these workers and their service, May 5-11 has been designated as Public Service Recognition Week.  

With the exception of astronauts and the SEAL team that caught Osama bin Laden, there aren’t many federal employees whose work is heralded in newspaper headlines. 

Whether it’s our role to inspect food and water, open new international trade routes for U.S. companies to sell their products, patrol America’s borders, protect our freedoms, take criminals off the streets and keep them behind bars, acquire the best equipment for our soldiers, or provide the intelligence needed to thwart terrorism, a federal employee’s satisfaction comes from the knowledge that America is safer and stronger because we did our jobs.

There are many federal workers in your communities and surrounding areas. They sound the alarm when a bad storm is coming; postal employees deliver the mail; air traffic controllers make the skies safer; the Census Bureau provides vital statistics to businesses; the V.A. Medical Center provides health care to veterans; the Corps of Engineers secure our dams and prevent floods in our communities; Social Security provides your grandmother’s monthly check; Medicare pays her medical bills; and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission makes your children’s toys safe, etc. 

Unfortunately, many politicians and congressional members target federal workers for cuts in pay and earned benefits as measures in a continuing fight over the federal budget. Federal employees’ salaries have been frozen for nearly three years, contributing almost $114 billion toward deficit reduction. No other workers in the private sector have been singled out for shared sacrifice or similar measures.   

As you encounter these federal workers in our community, I encourage you to let them know you appreciate the work they do in your behalf. We are honored to serve you.  

— Don Savage, President of Indiana Federation National Active & Retired Federal Employees Association

 

Organizer offers thanks to clean up volunteers

 

  On Saturday, April 27, spring cleaning and beautification for New Albany was possible because of about 75 volunteers who were willing to get their hands dirty and make a difference in the community. We are so grateful they gave up their Saturday morning to clean, weed, plant, mulch, fill planters, and in general, beautify downtown New Albany. This was an initiative of Keep New Albany Clean and Green in partnership with Develop New Albany, and it was inspiring to see the community come together to make this happen.

Here are the accomplishments by the by the numbers: 530 petunias, 120 sweet potato vines, 60 geraniums, 30 lantana and 12 roses were all planted. Two hundred bags of mulch were spread. Thousands of weeds we pulled. Sixty planters were filled with flowers around the downtown area. They look great. Thanks to the Community Foundation of Southern Indiana, Horseshoe Foundation and Samtec for providing the necessary funds to do this. Thank you MainSource Bank for donuts, coffee and water to support the volunteers and sincere appreciation goes to the many volunteers who worked so hard to make it happen. Thanks to Girl Scout Daisy Troop #1329 from the first grade at Floyds Knobs Elementary and their parents for helping beautify the Veterans Memorial on Market Street. Also to County Commissioner Mark Seabrook and City Council members Diane Benedetti and Shirley Baird, thanks for their hard work and leadership.

The city has come such a long way in the past few years but there is still so much more that can be done to make New Albany even better. Working together for the common good is critical for a great community. Thanks for those who are willing to make a difference!  

— Jerry Finn, Board Vice President, Keep New Albany Clean and Green