The West Virginia Legislature's 2000 Budget Digest has again funded a variety of projects throughout the Mountain State. Thanks to its own legislators, Harrison County has benefited from the variety of "special causes" championed by our representatives in state government.
The list of funding touches many needs in and around our county, including the Clarksburg Parks and Recreation board, Summit Park, local libraries and high schools and funds for dredging Simpson Creek.
Through the state Division of Culture and History, funding for many area fairs and festivals is provided.
Such funding by initiative is popular with both legislators and constituents -- especially those supporters who get dollars for their personal causes. We can understand that the system has its detractors also. Less powerful legislators may feel that the needs of their districts are overlooked.
On the whole, the funding seems to be worthwhile -- and in the public interest.
The Harrison County projects are important to the quality of life here and for all of us.
It is to be hoped that the process always functions this way. Public scrutiny of the funding is not only appropriate, but should be welcomed by our elected representatives. Neighboring states have debated the wisdom of such funds, often seen as a pork barrel for the powerful legislators and their friends.
But here in the Mountain State, the public apparently benefits from the process. Let's see that it stays that way.
Harry M. Fox,
Telegram Editorial Board member