Thumbs UP to hospitals investing in their communities -- this time, Fisher-Titus Medical Center in Norwalk giving away $50,000 in grants to area schools. After 12 years, that amounts to more than $500,000 spread out over 109 grants for projects in math, science and health education. Gifts such as this not only enhance education but invest in the people who we hope will build the area's future.
Thumbs DOWN to a teen-aged tantrum turning into a police case. So you're a 15-year-girl who doesn't want to baby-sit. Taking off for more than a month and taking up police time to look for you -- well, that's about as far from the answer as you can get. Given the very real heartache displayed in the national media when young people disappear and bad things really do happen to them, what was it your family could have done to you that justifies putting it through this hell? If you're not safe, Alayna Reinbold, we hope you can be made safe. If you are, and are just hiding, it sounds like someone needs to get over herself.
Thumbs DOWN to Perkins Township wasting time on politics over whether Ford or Chevy is better for police cruisers. Police Chief Tim McClung likes Fords but Chevys are apparently a better deal -- but two township officials are also affiliated with Foster Chevrolet. Trustee Bill Dwelle said he had a phone conversation with an Ohio Ethics Commission lawyer buying Fords from Matthews Ford would be OK. McClung said there are other Chevy dealers, but the delay might jack up the price. It sounds as though the monotonously usual animosity between McClung and Dwelle has resulted in the kind of fight generally expressed by certain cartoon stickers in the rear windows of pickups. What's the best deal the township can get on a cruiser? That's all that matters.
Thumbs UP -- green ones -- to the Erie County recycle bins being overfull -- because more people are taking part in recycling. File this under: "If you have to have problems, these are the kind to have."
Thumbs DOWN, again, in Perkins Township for wasting time on a highway department employee who, because of DUI trouble with the law, can't do something essential to his job: drive a truck. Instead, the township kept Gary Windau on part-time. Since Dec. 31, the deadline trustees set for Windau getting his commercial driver's license back, he hasn't been working, but he isn't fired, either. It may be the township is trying to do the compassionate thing by not cutting loose a valuable employee who made a mistake, but what happens when a "mistake" is made by someone the township bosses don't like as much? The township may be setting a troublesome and costly precedent.
Ending on a positive note, thumbs UP to the latest crop of St. Mary athletic hall of fame inductees. These are, once again, people who not only gained athletic glory in their high school years, but became vital parts of their communities afterward.