Just as Summit Hill changed its street sign colors to give it individuality, so does Northampton have unique colors - orange and black - reflecting the pride the community has in its athletic teams.

The U.S. Department of Transportation issued an edict that Northampton's signs are hard to read and they must be changed to DOT standards by 2018.

The ruling would have affected a lot of communities, necessitating an expense they don't need during these difficult financial times.

Weissport might have been a town which would have had to buy new street signs had the order stood. Even Summit Hill possibly wouldn't have complied with DOT standards.

Frankly, why should the DOT be sticking its nose into local situations? The DOT regulates truck drivers, railroads, airlines, airports, and interstate highways.

It has enough on its plate without having to try to dictate street identification signs to individual communities. Especially now, it is an expense that municipalities don't need.

We can understand if state officials would come down with an edict that street signs with bare minimum standards would be required on all streets to assist emergency responders. Again, it would be a state ruling, not the feds dictating to us. And actually, this is something local municipalities should do on their own.

Because the DOT backed off on its street signs - for now - towns like Northampton and Weissport don't have to change them.

Hopefully, the DOT will stay out of the affairs of local governments and stick to policies that the agency was forced to regulate.

Big Brother already is too big. Just look at the dictatorial powers of the EPA and other agencies.

The DOT can't be allowed to become another ridiculous, uncontrolled monstrous agency whose policies are decided contrary to all things democracy is meant to be.

If you want a better definition of what we're talking about, look at what the EPA is trying to do to the coal industry. Do the voters, the general public, or even our elected officials have input into their policies?

The answer is obvious.

By RON GOWER

rgower@tnonline.com [1]