Dear Editor:

Last week, I read in your paper about the potential acquisition of the old Empire Beauty School building by the Schuylkill County Commissioners. Many people have a strong opinion of this issue, myself included. Unfortunately, because the County Commissioners only meet on Wednesday mornings at 10 a.m., the working class and business owners cannot participate in county government. I and others would like to attend and be able to discuss County issues with our elected officials before action is taken.

With respect to the land deal, the County is falling into the trap of buying a landlocked building in Pottsville. Schoeneman himself was smart enough to expand his business where he had ample space to meet current and future demands. The County is short sighted in purchasing a building that has no room for future growth.

Because this matter was voted on the first time it was brought up in public, the taxpayers have no idea if the County spent any time determining if this is in our best interest. What other options were explored? Does the County own land anywhere that could be built on? Were properties in other municipalities studied? Are we getting the property for the best price possible? Is the use of eminent domain in the County's best interest?

If the County Commissioners would hold evening meetings like every municipality and school district in the County, the public could participate in the making of these decisions and could provide valuable input and options. It is the duty of any government body to insure the people are able to participate and to avoid the appearance of cronyism and back room deals.

Larry Padora

New Ringgold