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Lewes, Delaware
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April 13, 2001     Cape Gazette
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April 13, 2001
 

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Continued from page 6 will kill the goose that has laid the golden egg. Tens of thousands of jobs are dependent upon growth in Sussex County, and if it seems there are problems, let us examine the situation carefully before jumping to conclusions. Myth l: Development is out of control. This is nonsense! Devel- opment is completely in control. The Sussex County Council has done an outstanding job of fol- lowing the letter and spirit of the 1997 Comprehensive Land Use Plan, as well as the more recent state land use plan. Growth is be- ing channeled in to growth zones and density requests are being cut. In some cases, such a.s with Amer- icana Bayside, property is being effectively down-zoned as a'result of manipulation of the process. Anyone who makes the claim that development is out of control simply does not understand our currently land use process. Inci- dentally, many people may not re- alize that the county is still 90 per- cent undeveloped. Myth 2: The voice of the people is being ignored. Again, utter non- sense. I would challenge anyone to show me one major project that has gotten by without tremendous scrutiny both by Sussex County Planning and Zoning Commission and Sussex County Council. In addition, a host of special inter- ests groups such as the Citizens' Coalition and the Sierra Club have successfully argued for low- er densities and heightened envi- ronmental protection. Various spontaneous community groups that sprout up to protest a project are effective because they are able to personalize the issue and touch commissioners and councilmen on a local level. The activity of these groups indicates that we have a healthy democracy, not that the system is broken. Myth 3: There is a lack of infor- mation on projects' impact. I have seen first hand the volumes of in- formation that the planning and zoning commission and county council are provided with for typ- ical applications. In the case of major projects such as Americana Bayside, the in'formation may be a toot deep. These bodies need to be applauded for taking the time to educate themselves on the spectrum of issues that are a part of every application. Instead, they are slapped in the face not only by the NIMBYs, but also by some legislators and bureaucrats in Dover who.think they better know how to govern Sussex County, without investing a fraction of the time that the commissioners and councilmen do'on a daily basis. Myth 4: Environmental con- cerns are being ignored. There Legislative Hall, DoVer, was a saying during the debate over the preservation of the spot- ted owl habitat in the Northwest timberlands: "If our economy col- lapses to save the" spotted owl, the only thing people will care about is how to cook it." Now I am not saying that those concerned about our environment want our econo- my to collapse, but there is no doubt in my mind that the envi- ronmental extremist could care less about a healthy environment in Sussex County. If they did, they would acknowledge the tremen- dous economic benefit that devel- opment brings to the citizens of Stssex County, as well as the ef- fort that the SusSex County gov- ernment.makes in protecting the inland bays and other sensitive ar- eas. This includes hundreds of millions of dollars in sewer proj- ects, strict adherence tO storm wa- ter management practices and in- creased buffer and conservation .standards attached as stipulations on land use permits. These are but a few of the myths that extremists promote to instill fear into the minds and hearts of Sussex Countians and elected officials who are not part of the county government process. The Sussex County Council has already begun to lay the groundwork in a methodical and scheduled manner for the re- vision of its comprehensiv e land use plan in 2002. It is during this process that concerns are being explored and consensus is being built for the improvement of the current plan. Now is not the time to follow Chicken Little down the path of the sky-is-falling mentali- ty. To do so carries the greatest risk to the wonderful quality of life we enjoy in Sussex County. Richard Collins Lewes Installing windmills would save money Sussex County farmers have an opportunity to both make money and help the community. By in- stalling windmills to generate electricity, one per acre, electrici- ty can be generated for about 2.5 cents per kwh, according to GreenPeace, less than half the cost, which I paid last month to Delaware Electric Cooperative, 5.8 cents per kwh. Windmills do not disrupt farming. Coastal re- gions like ours are optimum for the use of wind power, and, it is environmentally clean. This tech- nology is well developed and in use, for example, in the southwest U.S.A. and in the Netherlands. The reason I bring this up is in response to the alarming news item on the radio last Thursday, stating that Sussex County faces a California-like electricity short- age in 2003, because we are deregulating and are not simulta- neously building sufficient addi- tional generating capacity. New York recently announced a similar problem, indicating to me that we are going to be facing increasing competition for scarce electrical energy. I urge our farmers to look into this and ac t immediately, for they have a great opportunity for both profit and service. And, I ask our state legislators to involve them- selves in this effort in support of our farmers and community. Perry Hood Lewes Dukes explains moratorium position Please allow me to explain why I do not support a moratorium or an interim rezoning policy, both the same in my opinion. Moratoriums are a proluct of bad planning. In 1996, the county held over 100 public meetings to explain our comprehensive land use plan. This plan was afive- year adopted plan. Now, three years into the plan, we have the coastal mayors who have built their towns to maxi- mum capacity and w.ant to stop the county from any rezonings until 2002 when we update the county plan again. Some towns have allowed large commercial business to develop with no off- street parking provided. Also, one town has allowed eight businesses and eight living units on 20,000 square feet, which equates to more than 34 units per acre. Other towns allow residential homes to be built on 5,000-square-foot lots, which equals eight units per acre. This is very high densityin my opinion. The council should not. be blamed on how their towns have been developed. An example of what the county has permitted is Americana Bayside, who they were all against, ended up around two units per acre. The mayor of Dewey Beach said parking was bad, but they are a walking community. To im- prove parking in their town, my suggestion is to have all business and residents park in the park and ride out on Highway One and take the bus in and then they can walk. Leave all the parking to visitors. The Atlantic Coastal Towns in- terim rezoning proposal has sent a message to SCAT (Sussex County Association of Towns) that their support is not needed since they say this only affects the coast. However, it does affect the whole county since a lot of people make their living working in real estate, construction, etc., from all over the county work in that area. My prediction is that we will see a mass influx of rezonings for the next few months in fear of a moratorium. A moratorium was put on a few years ago and in that interim we had multitudes of sub- divisions come in before any stoppage could take place. Many people who own land in the coastal unincorporated areas are in strong opposition, knowing this could have a very negative impact on their ability to develop the property they own or in the Continued on page 8 CAPE GAZETTE, Fr day, April 13 - April 19, 2001 - 7 brick at a time, N arman and Puggy Baylis's to Bethel Cemeter Dana Cooper's worked a, mason for 18 years but fi his jobs have kept him in ! on a daily basis like I ,ject. Whenever weather's fit, Dan the blocks and the bric :s the new wall defining the , a- ,annah Road side of the Bet = 1 Cemetery in Lew s. his trowel and steel tub fill :d freshly mixed mortar, Coc )- handles each brick and blo , them carefully. As h's tipping bricks in his hand like player spinning the h one finger, thousands of n orists pass by and gauge t Walkers stop to adm work and Cooper graciou: :xplains what he's up to. Cooper's quietly leaving I in Lews. Before the cen he laid every brick new additions to the Lev Library. Working cios designer John Lester, Coo 1 to that did all the brick wt the new Court 2 building 24 and before that for 1 Way Professional Center :he Kings HighwaY entrance He slaps mortar on the bricl them into place, taps th the butt end of the tr.ox , removes the excess mot the trowel blade and react another brick. Very metho very precise "I learned the trade from Frq Ingold out in Pittsbm I'm from," said Cooper I g. He was tryi get a few courses laid befi rains came. His boys pas, time trying to catch blue gi in Blockhouse Pond. "I guess I'll have it all finisl7 about mid-June. It should io nice." When the last bricl laid, Cooper will have plac 40,000 of them. The wall is a gift to Betl Cemetery from N and Puggy Baylis who w of Bethel Uni! Church. Norman d in March of 2000; Puggy, I preceded him in death months. In addition tt mlf million dollar bequest Center, the Bayl left a $150,000 bequest g is slowly taking shape t / BAREFOOTIN' a 11 )- Lis ire ,ly Bethel for the specific purpose of building a new cemetery wall. The couple is buried in the ceme- tery. tls Don Mitchell, chairman of the e- cemetery committee for Bethel, or said the project will probably end es up costing between $185,000 and ly $200,000. "We think Dana's do- er ing a super job and the appearance rk will be very fine when it's com- m plete." ae Mitchell said the existing ceme- at tery has more than 1,000 graves. to "There are still quite a few vacant lots. They're available to anyone; cs, one price for church members, ',m higher to others." el Mitchell said the church also :at owns land behind the cemetery es and overlooking Blockhouse Pond li- Park. "There's a good possibility we will expand the graveyard into d- that area. We're thought about ;h putting some mausoleums on the ast hill as part of our long-range goal ng but we're not moving on that yet." re Cathy Coates serves as secre- ed tary for the cemetery committee. lls In recent months she has been up- dating records and getting the ed names from graves entered into a ak computer. She checked her :'s records this week for the older d sections of the cemetery to get a feel for some of the older graves. el One of the oldest appears to be br- that of Capt. John A. Clampitt ,re who was born in 1747 and died in ed 1824. Hannah Chambers' stone ed lists her birthdate as 1847 and her us death date as 1818. Benjamin by White died in 1830 at the age of ,a 43. to No one seems to know for sure is- when the graveyard first came in- to Continued on page 8 at Bethel Methodist Denn vomeV photo from his work on the new wall ' in Lewes.