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April 11, 2008     Cape Gazette
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April 11, 2008
 

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11 - 50 Cents Booth: State should buy offshore power What's good for residents should be good for Delaware By Leah Hoenen Cape Gazette staff When it comes to electricity, Rep. Joe Booth says Delaware should put its money where its mouth is. Booth, R-Georgetown, says legislation passed last year allows state entities to join together to purchase power. Bidding as a single entity has saved the state millions, said Booth. He said the state's energy provider is Constellation Energy. Booth also says the state should take a stake in the stalled offshore wind farm proj- ect alongside residential and small business electricity customers. Lawmakers charged four state agencies with overseeing the proposed wind farm that would supply power to the standard offer service customers. They would have looked at the contract more carefully if they had more on the line, Booth said. "They would have seen it differently if it would have raised what they had to pay for power. They would have given a little more time and consideration to what we're about to put on residential and small business cus- tomers," he said. Booth wrote an amendment to House Concurrent Resolution 38, which would direct the state controller general to vote in favor of Bluewater Wind's proposal for a 150-turbine offshore wind farm. Controller General Russ Larson could not vote in favor of the project because some legisla- tors had pricing concerns. His potential no vote led to the vote being tabled. Booth's amendment would have the state join on as a partner with Delmarva Power's standard offer service customers, small business and residential ratepayers. "The state needs to put its money where its mouth is. We're saying to all o'f our sub- jects out there, 'This is good for you.' But Continued on page 8 Drivers Beebe cuts ribbon on sorely needed new Hudson wing A portrait photograph of Joe Hudson will hang in Beebe Medical Center's new Joseph R. Hudson wing. Beebe employees, officials and volunteers gathered Wednesday, April 9, to dedicate the long-awaited facility which includes an expanded emergency department and new beds for critical care and medical-surgical needs. "I'm deeply honored by this," said Hudson, "but the cred- Dennis Fomey photo it really belongs to the thousands of people - the most dedicated people I know - who make Beebe Medical Center the best for all of our residents and visitors." Jan McCarty, left, chairwoman of Beebe's board of directors, praised Hudson for his "legendary benevolence and ded- ication." See story and more photos on pages 28 and 29 question Rt. 1 safety By Ron MacArthur Cape Gazette staff Route l's far-right lane is intended for buses, bicycles and vehicles turning right. But every day, the same scene is repeated. Motorists in a hurry drive in the multi-use lane with no intention of turning. Darrel Cole, director of Delaware Department of Transportation (DeIDOT) public relations, admits the lane is prob- lematic. Transportation officials have had to make the best of a challenging situation, he said. Cole said the Route 1 corridor in the Cape Region is a headache for transporta- tion officials because it creates a unique mix of resort and local traffic, pedestrians, shoppers, buses and bicyclists - all on one. of the busiest roads in the state. "We recognize that this is not the ideal scenario, but it's leaps better than when we started," Cole said. During a recent Route 1 progress meet- ing, DelDOT officials got an earful about the multi-use lane. Continued on page 17 Butt ban for Rehoboth beach, Boardwalk? Resort commissioners to consider 2009 smoke-0ut By Ryan Mavity Cape Gazette staff Connoisseurs of Camels and Marlboros may consider themselves forewarned: Smoking on the beach and Boardwalk of Rehoboth Beach may be snuffed out. City officials recently introduced a possi- ble ban on butts in these two areas begin- ning in 2009. The proposed smoking ban in Rehoboth comes on the heels of a similar proposal in Bethany Beach that would ban smoking in certain designated places. Commissioner Paul Kuhns, who intro- duced the idea of a smoking ban at the Tuesday, April 8 workshop, said the pro- posal is only in the formative stages. He said he was concerned about the health effects smoking has on citizens, as well as the litter caused by cigarette butts on the ground. Kuhns said the butts on the ground are not aesthetically pleasing and also cause problems by getting into the sewers and the ocean. Mayor Sam Cooper said a smoking ban would be difficult to enforce and wasn't sure it was a high priority for the city. Cooper said while he does not like the cig- arette butts littering the ground either, the city also needs to be careful it doesn't infringe upon people's rights. Bethany's proposed smoking ban is still in its infant stages and has not been voted' upon yet. According to an early draf/of Bethany's ordinance, the town would ban Continued on page 16