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April 5, 2005     Cape Gazette
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April 5, 2005

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10 - CAPE GAZETTE, Tuesday, April 5 - April 7, 2005 .Legislators eye financial aid for Delaware Guard By Bridin Reynolds Hughes While there is no measure for their explicit bravery and no ac- counting for the implicit risks they run, at last count more than 400 men and women are serving the nation in wartime through the Delaware National Guard each week. Two state legislators are taking the lead on sponsoring leg- islation to honor that service by providing financial options and support to their families. Leaders in the General Assem- bly predict that a hybrid of the two bills - one sponsored by Rep. Pete Schwartzkopf, - D-Rehoboth Beach, and a second by Rep. Deb- orah Hudson, R-Fairthorne =is likely to emerge and find swift and strong support next week. "Assuring that there is long term financial security for the families is a goal we all share," said Sen. George Bunting, D- Bethany Beach. Bunting, a vet- eran of the Vietnam War. added, "Either bill, or a collaboration of the two will be well received." Beebe Continued from page 9 jurors had to have felt. This ver- dict was clearly a product of their anger against the defendants and a motivation to punish them for their conduct," the motion says. The jury awarded the Bailey es- tate $4 million in compensatory damages for her pain and suffer- ing from the time she was locked in the freezer until her death. Her husband, Tony Bailey, was award- ed $3 million, and each of her three sons, Chris Connaway, Shawn Connaway and Elberton Connaway III, was awarded $2 million. Anticipating that a jury would likely improperly consider the ir- relevant testimony, Elzufon sought to have the estate's claim tried separately from the wrongful death and punitive damage claims. Private Mortgage Insurance Removal Estate & Personal Appraisals Insurance Appraisals Refinances & Purchases soil amendments mulch corn ost stone FHA & REO Appraisals Major Len Gratteri, Public Af- fairs Officer for the Delaware Na- tional Guard said, "These propos- als are just another example of the tremendous support received by soldiers and airmen of the Delaware National Guard and proof that service is a two-way street here in Delaware. There is no better way to support our troops than to help take care of their families. These bills will help do just that." Schwartzkopf's proposal cre- ates a fund for the purpose of re- imbursing life insurance premi- ums paid by National Guard members. The eligible premiums are those paid to the Servicemem- bers' Group Life Insurance pro- gram. The organization offers members of the U.S. military a $250,000 death benefit for a monthly premium of $20.00. The premiums are deducted from the paychecks of the military members who participate. Under this program, the Delaware National Guard would Before the trial began, Judge Bradley ruled against separate tri- als. Nearly four pages of the 28- page motion for a new trial are de- voted to listing 39 parts of the tes- timony that Beebe says were irrel- evant to Bailey's pain and suffer- ing. "Unfortunately, before the jury verdict was rendered a vast quan- tity of evidence, all of which was unduly prejudicial and totally ir- relevant to the Estate claim, was put before the jury - all over the defense objection," the motion says. "...can there be any doubt in anybody's mind that had Julie Bailey's Estate claim been sepa- rated as originally requested by the defense that the verdict would not have been anything close to the $4 million that the jury award- ed?" the motion asks. Bailey family attorneys are ex- pected to file a response to the motion this week. NEED AN virgilbrown @ Licensed & Certified Appraisers available x2-0000327 Phone: 302-945-8545 Fax: 302-945-8396 set eligibility rules and administer the reimbursement up to $20 per month for members activated over 30 days. The legislation is modeled di- rectly from legislation that passed in New Mexico and is being pro- posed in many other states, in- cluding Alaska, Pennsylvania, New York, Michigan, Oklahoma, Massachusetts and Georgia. In- cluded in the bill is a provision that the state funds do not sup- plant the federal funding or feder- al reimbursement. Hudson's bill would provide fi- nancial benefits to the survivors of those Delaware service men and women, including members of the Delaware National Guard, who die in the line of active duty. The legislation requires the state to provide-a $150,000 death benefit to the beneficiary of any Delawarean on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces, including any member of the Delaware National Guard on active duty, who died while serving. If enacted, the death benefit would be retroactive to Sept. 11, 2001. Any survivor receiving the benefit would be re- quired to file the claim within two years of the bill becoming law. Under current state law, a death benefit of $150,000 is paid only when the Delaware service person dies during active duty after being called up during a state of emer- gency issued by the governor. Hudson's legislation would re- qtaire the death benefit to be paid regardless of the manner in which the service person is called to ac- tive duty, If enacted, the benefici- aries of seven Delaware service members killed in either Iraq or Afghanistan since Sept. 11, 2001 would qualify for the benefit. "I decided to introduce this leg- islation after learning more .about the issue and realizing that the compensation death benefits for fallen soldiers are not offered by the state in an equitable way. It is my belief, as well as every mem- ber of my caucus' belief, that if a Delaware service person dies in the line of duty, even if they were not called during a state of emer- gency, his or her survivors should be financially compensated. At the very least, we are saying to those families of fallen service men and women that we value their service and will not forget the sacrifice they made for our country." Gratteri said he looks forward to seeing the bills mesh or pass in- dividually, "The Delaware Na- tional Guard prides itself on being Delaware's Hometown Force, serving every community in Delaware and the nation," he said. Dec Grizzly Presents: ik Short Course on Great Gardens and Lawns Taught by a 0uartet of Lawn & Garden Gurus Can your home's lawn and garden be as beautiful as the fairway at your local golf course? Absolutely, says Doc Grizzly. But you must know what steps to take and when to take them. In this free seminar our garden and lawn gurus will share their extensive knowledge. Warren Golde, Baywood Greens horticuhuralist, will discuss Maintaining a Masterpiece, how he keeps up with Baywood's 750 acres, 200,000 planted trees, flowers and shrubs including 2,500 azaleas, 4,000 rose bushes, and 40,000 daffodils! Dec Grizzly will talk about caring for sandy Sussex County soil and natural, organic soil amendments that encourage long-term healthy growth. Helen Waite, Garden Designer, Waite Garden Design, will reveal Great New Plants For Your Garden. Chris Sann, Soil Expert, Barnyard Greenhouse, will speak on Spring & Summer Color in the Garden. GR00ZZLY00 LANDSCAPE SUPPLY & SERVICES 607 S. Marshall St. * Milford, DE 19963 * 302-422-4544 or 800.355-4544 *