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Dear Mr. County Executive...

Thank you for your letter of June 2. I am pleased and deeply touched that you took the time and effort to notify me about your gift of the reconstruction of Maple Road intersections. I know the sacrifices you had to make: drastically cutting the county payroll, returning the city parks, eliminating aid to cultural groups, slashing library funds…the list goes on. All of this, just to give me my wonderful gift! The postage alone must have cut deeply into your Six Sigma budget. I feel that I don’t deserve this largesse on your part, but I shall happily accept it.

When I went to the Clearfield Library last Thursday, to find that it was closed for the day, I wouldn’t have been quite so disappointed if I’d known of your plans to give me a new intersection! I shall harden my heart to the pleas of jobless artists and tell them to get a real job. Oh! I forgot; they’ll have to compete for work with county employees who are being downsized. Let them seek work in the South, then. We certainly don’t need more unemployed people hanging around our wonderful county.

Your handling of the County Holding Center debacle was masterful! Why coddle prisoners? If they don’t like the treatment at the Holding Center, or if they’re inclined to commit suicide there, why did they perpetrate the crimes in the first place? They should display some personal responsibility. It’s your obligation to protect the people who work for you from scrutiny. As far as I’m concerned, stonewalling is the optimum way to handle situations where colleagues’ accountability is criticized. I applaud your efforts.

You are ingenious to have confused the Justice Department by enabling “unrelated and extraneous” e-mails to be sent to them. I imagine that that slowed down their stupid and unnecessary investigations into the Holding Center operations.

Your stated purpose is to attract tourists to the area. Surely, our remarkable architecture should help. It’s too bad that we won’t have a Bass Pro Shop at the Aud site to show off, but I blame that on city planners. What do they know? Perhaps you could give employment to some out-of-work bums by hiring them at far less than minimum wage to build tall fences. We need to make slums inaccessible and invisible to tourists who’ll surely flock to our county to view the attractions you have selected for them to visit. It wouldn’t do for tourists to see those slums and boarded-up and abandoned stores and homes. They might think we’re less than perfect.

I must reiterate my thanks and appreciation to you, Mr. Collins, for your great thoughtfulness and humanitarian efforts to improve my life. Of course, I’m aware that you didn’t solicit my vote in the next election for county executive, but it goes without saying that, as a result of your consideration, I shall definitely vote for you in the fall.

Yours truly,

Hallie Block, Williamsville

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