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Lewes, Delaware
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July 11, 1997     Cape Gazette
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July 11, 1997

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CAPE GAZETTE, Friday, July 11 - July 17, 1997 - 2i State looks for a few good suggestions for Massey's Landing By Michael Short About 25 people showed up on Tuesd.ay night to offer suggestions on how to use Massey's Landing. Massey's Landing, a boating and fishing area near Indian River Inlet, was bought re- cently by the state. Potential suggestions in- clude more. fishing piers, a facility for the Indian River Fire Company in case of a ma- rine response, more boat ramps, a fish cleaning facility and perhaps a snack bar. Right now, there's a parking lot, two boat ramps and a small pier area. The once pop- ular spot bears little resemblance to its days as a private facility a half decade ago. The area at the end of Long Neck Road has a better parking tot and lighting, portable toi- lets and better boat ramps. But it has lost a bait and tackle shop and much of the pier area, both of which were heavily damaged by neglect and coastal ice storms. What it does have is a superb location of- fering access for boaters and fishermen to the inland bays. Tuesday's meeting at Indi- an River Fire Company was a chance for people to offer suggestions. Rep. Shirley Price (D Millville) said she liked the way the meeting was handled. "There's a really big need," she said. "Everybody wants to get out on the bay." Most comments were actually questions. State fish and wildlife representatives were questioned about bad language, hours and security. One speaker called for four boat ramps, doubling the existing number, and limiting boat launching to one side of Massey's Landing and hauling boats out to the other side of Massey's Landing. Don Ray of Millsboro asked if there were any plans to build a bridge to Route 1. "You may laugh..., but it would be a hell of a shortcut," Ra, said. Andy Manus, director of Delaware's Di- vision of Fish and Wildife, said there are absolutely no road plans. Officials said the plans call for the facility to be open from dawn to dusk, to allow no overnight camp- ing and that the facility could be used to house boats for Delaware's fish and wildlife agents. They said the area parking lot has been improved, a dumpster has been added and there may be additional improvements. Manus,aid there appears to be little call for another bait and tackle shop, as existed pre- viously. Ray said that he supports more fishing pier facilities at the site and said more ramps and use by the Indian River Fire Company were other positive aspects of the meeting. But Ray said he was disappointed that more people did not turn out to make their wishes known. "There should have been more people participating...You do not get many opportunitiesto give the state sugges- tions and have them take them." Comments, however, can still be given to the Delaware Department of Natural Re- sources and Environmental Control's Divi- sion of Fish and Wildlife at 739-3441. Sussex gets generally "good land use plan marks from state By Michael Short slightly to include the site outside_- ing with strip development and mixed uses..." limited development (one home The state has finally made its comments on the Sussex County land use plan and Sussex County expects to discuss the comments when County Council meets on Tuesday, July 15. But after controversy and con- frontation that may have produced the biggest single issue in Sussex County in many seasons, the state comments are decidedly anti-cli- matic. Sussex County'approved its plan this spring and has been wait- ing for state comments from the Cabinet-level committee on State Planning. The County Council is required to consider comments, but does not have to adopt the state recommendations. Most of the comments are non- controversial and many relate to a specific property near Belltown which the state has said could be used for housing for low-income residents. The letter calls for the development zone to be expanded Lewes. Here are excerpts from the let- ter. The'letter from Jeffrey Bul- lock, the chief of staff for Gov. Tom Carper, praises the county cooperation and coordination with the state and the county's exten- sive efforts to gather public input. "We are pleased that the plan calls for development in and adja- cent to existing municipalities and county-designated growth areas, that it recognizes rural settlements and addresses them in the context of community, and that an inter- governmental coordination zone is proposed to improve county-- municipal land use coordination. Additionally, we find many pro- posed plan implementation strate- gies which are responsive to state concerns and which, if enacted, will go far to achieve our shared objectives. Sunsetting of subdivi- sions, linking property taxation to zoning, increasing lot sizes, deal- West Rehoboth drinking water 00provements to be reviewed By Kerry Kester ing water from that well. Communities stricken with poverty and sub-standard living conditions may soon see at least one of their environmental prob- lems solved. Funding has become available to develop a drinking water infrastructure in those com- munities where water systems are in the worst condition. Common physical environmen- tal conditions in most of the eight communities in the Strong Com- munities Initiative include poor or no water or sewer systems, poor or no street lighting, no trash ser- vice, no electricity and poor road- ways. The federal project is aimed at providing for small, dis- advantaged communities. For ex- ample, most of the water in West Rehoboth comes from wells, al- though many of them are in poor condition and the water is safe for drinking at very few residences. In Lucas Development near Milton, some homes have no run- ning water at all. A small pump at the back of the development ser- vices those who dare to risk drink- Chuck Davidson of the Envi- ronmental Health Division of the Department of Public Health, an- nounced during a Strong Commu- nities working group meeting in Burton Village on Thursday, June 26, that funding could become" available as early as next year to develop or improve drinking wa- ter infrastructures in the .commu- nities with the greatest need. "West Rehoboth," he said, "doesn't have drinking water." The obvious solution would be to try to work out a means for the small community to hook into the Rehoboth Beach water system. The drinking water'project, he ex- plained, is parmered with the De- partment of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, who will not only assist with some of the financial arrangements but will also play a major role in, de- termining water sources. Current- ly consultants are beginning needs assessments, where they will de- termine need and desire for im- provement. creating a separate district for large box commercial uses (a C-2 commercial zone for large proper- ties) are all significant steps." "The county should consider developing more detailed land use plans for the areas identified as town centers, working with the re- spective municipality to address annexation limits, compatibility of uses, linkages between devel- oping and established areas to promote and preserve community identity and development patterns and densities which promote Reducing the size of develop- ment districts around the Nanti- coke Watershed and the Inland Bays also drew support. The letter also said that "it is imperative that the appropriate state agencies be part of your pro- posed activities to study creation of county agricultural preserva- tion district and TDR (transfer of development rights) programs. The most controversial ele- ment of the county's plan was preservation with a proposal that would have severely per 20 acres was considered at one point). The letter states "obvious- ly, the rights of property owners must be considered along with the realities associated with agricul- tural pursuits. We need to contin- ue discussions among the county, the state and the farm interests to see what approaches are feasible beyond those your plan has incor- porated. Failure to appropriately address preservation and enhance- ment of the agricultural base of the county could render the posi- tive steps for naught." 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