EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

January 1, 2014

Sound Off

The Eagle-Tribune

---- — Inspections

I see that Haverhill’s Mayor James Fiorentini is on the front page touting all the services being provided by the city. One number caught my attention: The city’s four inspectors conducted nearly 12,000 inspections. How is this humanly possible? Conservatively, say that they work 46 weeks a year after deducting vacations, personal and sick time, and holidays. At 3,000 inspections per inspector, that works out to about 65 inspections a week, or 13 a day. I’m sure that they are taking coffee and lunch breaks, not to mention all the chit-chatting and hobnobbing around town. You’d be lucky to get five to six hours a day of work. That works out to two to three “inspections” per hour, per inspector, every single workday of the year. Figuring in travel time to each location, these inspections would have to last no longer than a few minutes. And this leaves absolutely no other time for paperwork and office duty. Sounds like an impossible number to me. I wonder how many sites are really being inspected or is there something else going on here?

Handicap placards

I was the executor of my aunt’s will. She passed away three years ago. She had a handicap placard. The estate never was asked for its return. There was never a follow up from her doctors office or city for its return. Anyone not authorized to could have just used it forever, which I am sure happens in many similar cases. I eventually discarded it myself, but maybe there should be some sort mandatory renewal requirement put in place and maybe some sort of color coding to allow verification by authorities. Currently abuse is just too easy.

National service

Every 18- to 20-year-old should need to serve at least two years in the military -- not combat units, but to serve in some capacity. This is done in other countries. There are far too many young people wandering aimlessly with their cell phones. Our country needs to educate and indoctrinate them. Many just plain don’t get it. No pay, just room and board. This is a no-brainer!

Avoiding questions

The president has gone undercover in Hawaii to avoid answering for budget cuts to veterans, lost unemployment benefits, and the 1.5-percent Social Security increase of $6 a month (after deductions) that gave me almost enough money to buy two gallons of gas for my holiday vacation. I think I will just stay home instead and buy two pounds of hamburger.

Local doctors

I am older and in need of medical care. I make every effort to find doctors in Methuen where I have lived for many years only to have these doctors send me to Lawrence. I have explained to them I need doctors in Methuen because I do not have transportation and travelling to and from Lawrence is costing me a small fortune. Methuen is known as a city. Why can’t we have the medical facilities we need right here? It just does not make any sense to me and it sure is a hardship to have to go to Lawrence in every respect. My fixed income should be going to food and utilities rather than cabs.