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March 10, 2009     Cape Gazette
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March 10, 2009

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Li i | r, KS TUESDAY, MARCH 10 - THURSDAY MARCH 12, 2009 7 Letters )) Continued from page 6 via its website of the identity of its embe who eater to greening by recycling, the saleA of environmentally sensi- five products and procedures, or other Earth-friendly service in any way." The so-called Chamber Green Force boasts of ctmntly having some 90 members and has as its motto "May the Green Be With You," sort of sounds like a St. "Patrick's Day toast. I was one of many Chamber Green Force members who at- tended a breakfast meeting held at the Center for the Inland Bays Feb. 26. There was a cross-section of loeal businesses that all do what they do in their day-to-day activities with the most eco-mind- ed and "greenest" approaches possible. Many have practiced self-im- posed cost-sangmeasures for years before green became popu- lar. It's not rocket science - a lot of it is just following through with what our parents kept harping on: turning the lights out when you leave the room, closing the out- side door when the heat or air- conditioning is on and turning the TV/computer off when not in use. Fixing the leaky faucet, proper caulking and weather stripping, etc. to conserve energy, recycling - the many little things that add up to being more energy-con- scions, more frugal, less wasteful. Being "green" in our business and in our private lives is much easier now with advances like the use of solar panels (Cape Gazette has theirs), electricity-usage mon- itoring devices, manufactured ad- vances to malse  biodegradable products, computer-monitoring of our utility usage and green con- struction using recyclable, ecolog- ically friendly materials. We all just need to look for the green op- tions available and probably some greenbacks in the process. The government is even offering many more incentives to con- serve via increased tax credits. I invite your readers to visit the offices of the Center for the In- land Bays in the Indian River Ma- rina for a trip to the future. They have transformed a frame life- guard building into a state-of-the- art green office building bringing together green technology in a most beautiful building fim the solar panels on the roof to the use of bamboo floor molding,. The windows are energy'efficient, the wall paint non-toxic and most of the flooring and furniture is made from recycled material and/or recyclable itself. Outside they have an ecosys- tern that ties in a pond that is fed by rainwater runoff from the roo a cistern and a water garden. The whole proiect was thought out very well and all aspects interact so beautifully. What an accom- plishment. Makes one prou d to be humaxx UPS Stm Rdoth mm .Cape high theatre program on upswing Bravo to the Cape Henlopen Theater Arts Academy produc- tion of "Grease," which played to sold-out houses (over 1,100 tick-- ets were sold) this past weekend! As parents who have seen the Cape theater program at its best and most neglected, it is gratify- ing to witness its very welcome and deserving comeback. Many thanks to Dr. George Stone, Principal lohn Yore and the Cape Henlopen board of edu- cation for supporting the rebirth of this program. Thanks to Cape Theater Arts Academy Program Director Ken Skrzesz and Stage Director David Button, along with both their professional an.d student production teams who brought their magic onstage, backstage, front-of-house, in the band, and rtmning lights and sound. Thank you to the many parents who supplied food to hungry, tired teenaged actors during very long reheaqsals, and at intermis- sions, raising over $600 for the academy. And special thanks to Aleta Thompson and Chris King  for their Cape theater institutional memory and wisdom. We hope the community will also support the new Encore Thrift Store, located off the north- bound lane of Route One just past Arby's, which is opening March 14. Clear Space Productions, in partnership with the Cape Hen- lopen School District and also as the Theater-Company-in-Resi- Cape Henlopen High School, is very generously con- tributing 10 percent of Encore's proceeds to the Cape Theater Arts Scholarship Fund, which will provide Cape theater students with educational and field trip op- portunities. This is just the beginning, for with the completion of the new high school's fabulous arts facili- ties will come many possibilities for cross-departmental enrich- ment and student community service credit, including sets built by the Cape tech classes, scenery decorated by Cape art classes, re- hearsal and intermission food provided by Cape cooking classes and productions marketed by Cape business classes and adver- tised on Cape TE. The Cape Theater Arts Boost- ers look forward to helping to co- ordinate all of these efforts for fu- ture productions that Cape dis- trict audiences will enjoy for many, many years to come. Parents, community members and Cape faculty, please contact to offer your support and assistance. scott tnmu00 (ape Theater Arts Parent and Community Boosters Report paints unfair picture of fire companies rmchair quarterback- If otir fire companies are when they f'clqt a fire, they must fire service, h ing is always easy and maintaining substantial bank take hours away from their fatal- And suggesting that the State when you think about balances, consider for a minute lies to train to answer the bell. Fire Prevention Commission recent newspaper arti- the cost of equipment, person- When reporters write about acts as a rubber stamp for the cles attacking Delaware's volun- nel and a place to put all that fitness rooms and exercise fire service just isn't so. The teer fire companies, it's easy to stuff that's close to the sprawling equipment in terms that make it people on the commission come see that a lot of armchair quar- communities our firefighters look like the fire service is set- from both industry and the serv= terbacking, but little under- protect. In that light, what might ting up exclusive health clubs ice and are far from being under standing of the challenges facing seem like a padded purse starts for its members, it misses the the fire service's thumb. our firefighters, went into" the looking more like what it is - point that the National Fire Pro- I think most Delawareans articles, prudent management to meet tection Association has mandat- would agree with the premise I certainly agree that any or- certification and background future needs, ed that equipment as part of its that our state is blessed to have ganization serving the public - checks of emergency medical I'm a fwrn believer that state health and safety standards, volunteer fire and ambulance should be ready to accept con- appropriations for our fire corn- While it's getting harder to fend service personnel with the pro- structive criticism, and that services personnel as well as panies should remain uniform, volunteers, the volunteer fire fessionalism and dedication that making our volunteer fire com- there's always room for im- parties submit to annual audits. After all, as the newspaper service remains a bargain for the , our crews demonstrate day in provement in anything, includ- That said, I strongly object to points out, those contributions state. According to the most re- and day out. With state govern- ing the volunteer fire service, the tenor of stories that create represent but a small part of a cent report from the state audi- ment's help we've built a fire But this is a case where the crit- the impression that Delaware's department's overall budget. To tor's office, replacing our volun- service that ranks among the na- ics should walk in the boots of volunteer companies are enrich- cover their other costs, depart- teer companies with paid pro- tion's best, and we should think our emergency service person- nel before telling us what S ing themselves at the expense of ments hold public dinners, food fessional services such as Wilm- long and hard before we gut that ' sales, bingo and other charitable ington's would cost the state at system and replace it with taxpayers and state government, gaming activities. Ian tell you least $151 millionin the first year something else. wrong and how we should fix it. The fact of the matter is that a During my time in the House new fire truck can cost upwards from experience that a volun- of operations. State Sen. Bruce C. Ermis, D-Smyrna, ' teer fire company's lucky to get It's true that people live more represents Smyrna, Delaware City, [eipsic, and Senate, Ive sponsored and of $400,000 and that, as we add a 30 percent response to its demanding lives, making it hard- tittle Creek, Odessa, Townsend, parts of supported a number of bills people and new housing devel- fundraising activities, er to fmc[volunteers. It's sad Middletown and eastern Dover. He is a past aimed at improving both the opments, it's going to cost more chief, past president and 50 year member of performance and accountability And, let's not forget the folks that the media seemingly want to add staff and equipment to Citizens' Hose Co. No. 1,a past president of of OUr emergency services, keep our citizens safe. who answer the call. Not only to make that task harder by the State Fire Chiefs Association and the Those include bills that require do they face extreme danger tainting the public's view of our Kent County Fire Chiefs Association.