To The Editor:
I don’t often write a letter to the editor even though I do not agree with many things the city does. I have discussed these problems with the mayor in the past. Overall, this is still the best city in the area to live. Now enough is enough, now is the time to ask the citizens of Washington to agree with 47 homeowners to stop a junkyard from going into our west industrial park that is next to a residential subdivision. For anyone who has not been listening, the Sporlan Valve Plant No. 2 has been sold to a group that plans to establish a junkyard at that location. If Sporlan would still be locally owned, they would not have sold to a junkyard operation. In the late ’40s and early ’50s, Washington was stagnated by having only shoe factories and some pipe factories; they paid very low wages and had a heavy hand over this town. As a young boy, I can remember my uncle who worked at one of the shoe factories tell my dad, “My friend wanted to take off work for an hour or two to attend his mother-in-law’s funeral. He was told that if he did he would not have a job when he returned.” In June of 1955, the Washington Civic Industrial Corporation was formed with the intent to bring good and clean industries into Washington. They sold stock (more like a donation) for $100, a lot of money at that time for an individual, so that the WCIC could buy land and resell it to an industry. Over the years they have brought many industries into Washington, like Hazel, Melton Machine, and many others. This was when only the WCIC and the Chamber of Commerce was doing industrial development. The 353 Redevelopment Corporation, a branch of the city, did not start until August of 1988. In 1973, the WCIC made a deal with Dr. John and Mimi Post to buy 17 acres of their land to resell to Sporlan Valve Company for an expansion. This was Plant No. 2. Over the years, the WCIC and the Chamber of Commerce have turned down some industries because they did not fit in Washington. I know because I have been a member of the board of both organizations for about 40 years. This junkyard does not fit into Washington. It is time for the city council and the mayor to step up to the plate, do not rewrite the decisions of the past generation, do what is best for the citizens and the city and stop this new junkyard.