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April 13, 2001     Cape Gazette
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April 13, 2001
 

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20 - CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, April 13 - April 19, 2001 Tarburton leaves legacy behind at Department of Agriculture By Jim Cresson Secretary of Agriculture Jack Tarburton will be putting a lifetime of expertise into play as he steps down at the end of the month from his cabinet post and begins marketing state farm products in the Delaware Economic Development Office (DEDO). Gov. Ruth Ann Minner announced, April 9, that Tarburton would be replaced on her _cabinet by Smyrna farmer Michael Scuse, freeing Tarburton to focus on marketing Delaware agriculture with DEDO. "Agriculture is an incredibly important industry in Delaware and I am pleased to announce that I will have these two good men working to support our farms and farmers," Minner said when making the an- nouncement. "Jack has done an outstanding job and he is the perfect peon to take the next step in state government's promotion of agriculture." Minner said the new position of agricul- ture marketing in DEDO is "'something the ag community has said for years was need- ed and I agree. Farming is a major industry and we ought to support it the same way we do auto plants or pharmaceutical compa- nies. I am so grateful to Jack for taking on this task." Tarburton, 58, of Prime Hook Beach, has served as secretary of agriculture since 1993. A native of the east Dover area, Tarbur- ton farmed 315 acres of potatoes and grain from 1967 to 1990. He is a 1965 graduate of%ir- ginia Polytechnic Insti- tute with a degree in agronomy. Heworked as an intelligence research specialist for the De- TARBURTON fense Intelligence Agency from July 1966 through December 1967. Tarburton discussed his past eight years in the Department of Agriculture and what he views as the high points of his service there. ,Without a doubt, the high pint of my tenur was the almost miracuio embrace by Delaware farmers of the nuient man- agement plan developed by the Delaware Commission on Nutrient Management." he saitJ. "In less than a year, more than 80,000 acres of farmland have come under nutrient management plans. We're even shipping manure off the peninsula now. What an ac- complishment. I'm very grateful to all the farmers who have responded so well to the need for these plans." Tarburton said the degree of profession- alism among employees of the Department of Agriculture pleases him greatly. "I would hope someday that my legacy would be the improvement of the department as a whole and the tmprovement of its relations with other state agencies and with the public it serves, the farmers," he said. Looking ahead, Tarburton expects to fo- cus on breaking the tariff barrier that has prevented American poultry from gaining access to the Canadian market. "That's a big hurdle that must be crossed," he said. "We're all a part of NAFTA, and Canada is only a 10-hour drive from Delaware. We need to be able to take our poultry up to Toronto or Montreal for marketing, but those 2.6 percent tariffs are prohibitive nOW." Other goals for Tarburton will be recruit- ing vegetable processing industries to lo- cate in Delaware. "We'll need to get away from the three-crop triangle and get back to planting green beans, peas and spinach," he said. "But Delaware farmers can do that, especially with irrigation, and the local soils are excellent for producing those veg- etables. It's time to get some of those West Coast agribusiness back here to Delaware." He said long-range goals are to get Delaware farmers on the ground floor of breeding new plants. "I'd like to promote the biotech industry at the University of Delaware. We need to be on the forefront of that effort and take full advantage of the new products developed." Saying he was simply moving from a regulatory agency to a marketing agency, Tarburton emphasized: "There's a tremem dgus amount of expectation around this new position of mine at DEDO. The gover- nor wants state agriculture to continue to be a healthy part of our economy. My job will be to make that happen, and I look forward to it.'" Asked to sum up his past eight years at the Department of Agriculture, Tarburton said: "It's been a great ride, but I'll miss the people. They're very professional and very fresh." Sussex County Councilman Vance Phillips, who operates a farm in Laurel, said he is encouraged by the governor's commitment to helping agriculture. "By ap- pointing someone as capable and respected as Jack Tarburton to market Delaware agri- culture, Minner has fulfilled her campaign pledge to help the industry," said Phillips. "He's the right man for the job." 7 County planners unanimq00usly deny Mt. Joy housing proji00ct 67-1ot development near Millsboi'o had garnered heavy opposition By Michael Short unanimously April 5 to deny a 67- The Sussex County Planning lot subdivision in the Mount Joy and Zoning Commission voted area. UD report cites impact of Slam Dunk to the Beach By Jim Cresson Slam Dunk to the Beach founder and tournament director Bob Jacobs was not surprised April 12 to learn that a University of Delaware study had given his tournament high marks for what it brings to Delaware. The "Economic Impact of Siam Dunk of the Beach" prepared by the Center for Applied Demogra- phy & Survey Research at the uni- versity's College of Human Ser- vices, Education and Public Poli- cy, found the tournament's eco- nomic impact to be $3.5 million annually. The 50:page report, written by Simon Condliffe, Eric Jacobson and Edward C. Ratledge, also found that Slam Dunk spurs eco- nomic growth for the area, which is consistent with the Department of Tourism's mission of develop- ment through tourism, a major in- dustry of Sussex County. "The amount of print publicity the tournament has generated can- not be understated," read the re- port. "The volume of newspaper clip- pings since the inception of the tournament weighs almost 20 pounds. The range from neutral coverage of the tournament [na- tionwide reporting of high school basketball scores] to positive cov- erage such as 'USA Today' multi- page coverage: 'Stars fill Siam Dunk Field.'" The report rated the tournament with such a beneficial impact on the area, the county and the state that it suggested: "Given the tournament's fit with the Department of Tourism's mission, the state would benefit by the two organizations working cooperatively to promote tourism in the area." Based on results of a survey conducted by researchers of an es- timated 20,000 visitors attending this past Slam Dunk tournament, a third of those attending the event were out-of-state visitors, a third were nonlocal Delawareans and a third were Delawareans living within 25-mile radius of Cape Henlopen High School, the tour- nament site. The noneconomic impact of Slam Dunk, said the report au- thors, may have the highest value, although it is less tangible than the economic impact. The project has garnered heavy opposition because of worries about traffic and drainage. Inland bays pollution was also discussed. but traffic and drainage were the primary concerns of local resi- dents. The Country Meadows sub- division was planned for land south of Sussex 297. Developer Donald Ward and his son said they would do nothing to damage the existing drainage and would develop a quality subdivi- si(m. "We are really looking at something pretty nice," he said re- cently. " "There is no intention to plug up or impede the flow of water in any water." Ward and his son argued that growth is occuring there and that homes are needed in the Mount Joy and Millsboro general area. While opponents argued that there were many existing lots, Ward said those lots were located elsewhere in the county and often catered to out of state residents. He said Country Meadows would serve Sussex County resi- dents and he argued that there was a need for the development. Opponents had presented a video showing high water follow- ing rainstorms in the area, but Ward countered by saying that his development's stormwater control plans could actually lessen runoff: "This is just too many homes. The road cannot take it," said op- ponent Diane Layfield. Traffic in the rural area near the Stockley Center was the other pri- mary objection and Sussex Coun- ty Planning and Zoning Commis- sioner Layton Johnson noted the length of the road serving the de- velopment when he motioned to deny the subdivision request. The project does not go on to Sussex County Council because it was a subdivision request. County council considers many applica- tions, but the Sussex County Plan- ning and Zoning Commission has the final say in subdivision re- quests. SATURDAY, APRIL 14 12-- 4 P.M. 11 OCEAN POINTE OCEAN BLOCK OF NEW ORLEANS ST., DEWEY BEACH MIKE "BACHER @ TRANQUIL OCEAN VIEWS...and the sound of the surf from the decks of this fantastic Townhome. Featuring 3 BR, 3BA, FP, and open floor plan with many new upgrades. Located in the "!leart of Dewey," just steps to the beach, restaurants and local nite-life! OFFERING A $22,000 RENTAL INCOME GUARANTEE!! $399,000. Call Mike Bacher for more informtation. 'z GalIo, t'ruoenl, lal REALTORS" 227-6101 800-321-2268