Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To Wood County Habitat for Humanity for exceeding its $100,000 goal in the group’s recent four-month Caring Campaign. A final donation of $1,900 by Michael Tucker, president of the West Virginia Central Credit Union, who also gave $10,000 to open the campaign, pushed the total over the goal. The money will help the wonderful organization build more homes for deserving residents.

DOWN: To news that eight West Virginia county school systems – including Calhoun – have serious budget deficits. This past Wednesday, the state Board of Education approved plans by the counties to eliminate these deficits. If these deficits are not eliminated, the affected counties could possibly be taken over by the state.

DOWN: To New Matamoras resident Robert D. Armstrong, 54, who pleaded guilty to violation of the Clean Water Act by allowing oil and gas well wastewater to flow into a tributary of the Little Muskingum River three years ago. He also entered a guilty plea on behalf of his company, RCA Oil and Gas LLC. On June 19, 2010, Armstrong used a backhoe to breach a wall of the reservoir, releasing about 800,000 gallons of wastewater from several fracking operations into Rockcamp Run.

UP: To the Knights of Columbus and the local Catholic Charities for the “40 Cans for Lent” drive, which was announced this past week. The 40 Cans drive asks families to donate one can of non-perishable food for each day of Lent. The food will be collected on Sundays at St. Margaret Mary and St. Francis Xavier in Parkersburg and St. Monica in Lubeck. Boxes will be placed in the rear of the churches. The goal is to collect 2,500 pounds of canned goods, which will be used to restock food pantries in the area. This is a wonderful idea that possibly could be adopted by other churches in the area.