A voice is to be used

Published 4:36 pm Monday, March 8, 2004

By Staff
Our View
Tuesday night the residents of Escambia County, concerned about the implications of four-laning Hwy 31, showed up to voice their opinion on the issue. Both supporters and opposition came to look at the map displaying the route and possible alternate routes. These people who came out, whether curious, interested or just plain worried about the project, made sure that they were going to take the steps necessary to have their voices heard.
With this project come matters that must be weighed carefully by both the Alabama Department of Transportation and the area's citizens. For instance, safety is a concern as mentioned in our front page story today that speaks of a Flomaton resident concerned for the welfare of the kids attending the Flomaton High school and their going between the school and the park, which is across the highway. However, another aspect of safety would not degrade safety but we feel enhance. How many of our children commute everyday to attend Jeff Davis at the Brewton campus? With two extra lanes available, one on each side, in our opinion traffic would run much smoother and be safer. Another factor is loss of property to some of the residents along this route. Will this loss of property decrease the value of their home?
Not all of these areas have a negative connotation, some are actually positive. The city of Atmore has been working very hard to bring industry to Atmore and improve the quality of life for its citizens. The four-laning of Hwy 31 will be another plus to help us bring industry to the area, by providing better access to and from our city and its merchants.
One thing that we noticed that some might not, relates to our first paragraph. Citizens are concerned with what is going on in their community and are willing to take action. In an era when citizen participation, especially at the polls, seems to be shrinking ever smaller, we applaud our citizens for their efforts to inform themselves and participate in the process.
As you know this is an election year for many offices here in Atmore and Escambia County. We feel that this is a sign, that the people of Atmore will voice their opinion during these elections. No matter who you decide to vote for, we each have an opinion and a voice. Don't just sit there and let other people make decisions for you. If you do this, not only are you giving up your right to make a difference, but also you're right to question the actions of those elected officials. So, when the time comes to vote, make sure that your voice is heard.

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