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Survey of Chatham taxpayers is one-sided

By Janet Place
Posted Saturday, March 6, 2010

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Pittsboro, NC - While I applaud anyone who asks for accountability in government, I have to comment on Tom Glendinning's survey. I took the survey, and found it to be very one sided, especially the last question. An unbiased survey would have included more boxes for "need more information".

I am hard pressed to rate all the services listed, though I recognize that they all are important. I feel well qualified to comment on health and human services. They are are excellent given how little funding they really get and how understaffed they are. Do most people know that the health department is responsible for restaurant inspections, water quality, well and septic inspection, community and school health and many other programs that happen outside of the "clinic".

There is plenty of research to show that most people have no clue as to all the services provided by the health department. The fact that health and social services were lumped together in your survey proves that and even reinforces that the health department is a social service. It is not.

In a recent national project to determine county health status by state, Chatham Co ranked number 4 out of the 100 NC counties. This was not due to the availability of primary care providers. There we ranked 49 out 100. The ranking was due to community health initiatives.

Nobody likes paying taxes, but it is a fact of life if we want to have a livable infrastructure. Yes, we always need to make sure that our taxes are being used appropriately, but public opinion should not be based on an unscientific survey.

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