Thoughts From The Publisher’s Desk

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News reporters think differently than other people, and that’s why a friend of mine in the industry elsewhere had some questions for me after reading about the major pot bust on our website last Friday.

He was specifically questioning how authorities came up with a street value in excess of $400,000 for the 350-plus pounds of marijuana they recovered during a traffic stop along Route 113. I said I had no idea how they came up with that number but would get back with him.

After some calculating and some research, which included a visit to Priceofweed.com to learn the average cost of low-quality weed is about $125 per ounce ranging up to $350 or more for the stronger stuff, I discovered the pot seized under the police’s valuation came to $1,200 per pound of weed, or about $75 per ounce.

When I reported that back to my buddy, he said that must have been “brick weed.” Not wanting to sound clueless, I then went back to the Internet to determine what exactly he was referring to with that reference. Clearly, he was better versed in this stuff than me.

The bottom line here is apparently this weed was not the good stuff, despite Staff Writer Joanne Shriner reporting she could smell the drug as soon as she walked into the Marylnd State Police barracks in Berlin last Friday for the press conference, which featured more than a dozen large packages of pot on the table before authorities.

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The Maryland General Assembly reconvened Wednesday and one of the major issues expected to be addressed at some point involves gun control, but Delegate Mike McDermott has raised some eyebrows and received some cheers and jeers for his belief there are enough laws on the books for gun control.

On many issues, McDermott may be a tad too far to the right for me, but on this issue he’s on the money. Rather than tightening every single gun law on the books or adding more, school safety should be the focal point of the legislature in the coming months. Unfortunately, it’s probably not going to happen, as the governor’s office has already outlined its plans to seek new gun control measures and crack down on existing ones.

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The other proverbial shoe dropped this week when Perdue Farms and the Hudson family filed an intention to seek reimbursement for at least a portion of its legal expenses from the Waterkeeper Alliance. The move comes a few weeks after a judge ruled the alliance did not prove a Clean Water Act violation occurred on the Hudson farm, which raises chickens for Perdue.

The reimbursement seems like a long shot to me, but it’s going to be interesting to follow. Clearly, in seeking the funding reimbursement, the poultry giant and the family want to try and prevent others from going through what they endured over the last three years. However, in my estimation, the judge would have opined about the reimbursement in his ruling last month in the lawsuit. He had mentioned earlier in a court document that if the lawsuit was frivolous and proven to be a waste of time that he would not hesitate to order attorney fee compensation.

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It was confirmed this week Salisbury’s mayoral election will be contested, as one-term incumbent Mayor Jim Ireton will be challenged by Joe Albero, a household name in Salisbury thanks to his online news blog.

Although the Ireton-Albero showdown has been a certainty for months, I am hearing there will be at least one other name on the ballot come election time. With the election deadline looming on Tuesday, it will be interesting to see if this individual does come forward as supporters hope.

A three-person race for mayor will be extremely interesting as the top vote getter might only need 30 percent of the vote to claim the seat. With Ireton and Albero throwing mud at each other already, a qualified candidate who takes the high road could be the choice. It will be interesting to see what transpires next week.

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