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Issue without merit
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Dear Editor: In last week's Covington News, weekly columnist Patrick Durusau made reference to the county subsidy of cell phone service for county commissioners. He commented that instead of providing this service to the commissioners the money should be forwarded to the Sheriff's Department for the purchase of bullet proof vests. In writing the article Mr. Durusau did not take into consideration critical factors that come into play when composing his reasoning and rationale for his article.

Since the year 2000, the Newton County Sheriff's Department has been involved with the Bullet Proof Vest Partnership Program. It is a program that awards grants to sheriff departments for the purpose of purchasing Bullet Proof Vests for personnel. This grant covers reimbursements for actual money spent on these lifesaving vests for our heroes in uniform.

I am happy to report to Mr. Durusau, though he can't attend our Sept. 15 meeting, the BVP Program has just awarded the Newton County Sheriff's Department $57,541 this year to purchase the very vests his article claims our cell phone subsidy would cover.

Also, he points out that the Web site does not provide contact information on the commissioners. This is simply not true. Since late 2007, I have a link attached to the county Web site and a monthly newsletter called "My Perspective." In this newsletter I provide a wrap-up of our two monthly commission meetings for the residents in the second district. This link has both phone numbers and my e-mail address listed for citizens to call or write with their concerns and comments.

I wish Mr. Durusau could join us in our two monthly meetings to see how the Board of Commissioners facilitates issues, rather than to create one that has no merit.