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Lewes, Delaware
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December 3, 2010     Cape Gazette
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December 3, 2010
 

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Cape Gazette VIEWPOINTS FRIDAY, DECEMBER 3 - MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 7 Letters )) Continued from page 6 sociated to the awarded. It is my understanding that town officials have conducted a public hearing, but the staff's fate will rely on one council person who will make the decision and who was appointed by the mayor. A decision is being made in regard to allocations by the police depart- ment against this town employee of alleged theft of Staples "Reward Points." The police department that offered the staff person two options when questioned: "resign or be arrested." Since when did the police department have au- thority to make these types of de- mands - demands alleged to have been issued by the chief. .Never- theless the council hearing officer in question who was the same person, by ruled decision of the State Public Integrity Commis- sion, could not preside on the public hearing of the chief due to alleged allocations that would possibly present a serious com- promising position for the town. This is the person who Mayor Newlands places the power to make the decision against this staffperson and who will make a decision of their employment with the town. How can the town gov- ernment terminate a staff person when they haven't been found guilty in the Delaware courts? Milton residents, I hope you are prepared to open your wallets and open them wide and deep. Cur- rently the town has paid over $25000 in additional unbudgeted legal fees of taxpayers dollars to meet campaign promises of "cleaning house" at Town Hall. With numerous human resource coflaplaints already filed against Mayor Newlands, Cotmcilman Lester and the town and several current lawsuits, the town is going down a path paved with legal fees, extensive litigation and large set- tlement costs. This doesn't in- dude additional lawsuits that will be filed by dismissed staff due to wrongful termination, retaliation, lack of adherence to the personnel handbook, associated past history and abuse toward the whistle blower law, and misuse of political power. I myself have morals that will not permit me to just set back and let this type of inappropriate mistreatment of a person occur in the town I reside- Post Milton Tree lighting starts new Dewey Tradition The Dewey Beach Civic League didn't know what to expect when it planted anew Christmas tree near Filer's, decorated the tree and the island, and invited those in town to help light it up last Satur- day night. What happened Was an enthusiastic turnout of about 200 people who braved a brisk wind, heard terrific music by Keith Mack and Ed Shockley, saw Santa Claus Laird and Santa's helper Ranieri arrive to cheers in a police escort, heard amoving rendition of"Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" by local fifth-grade singing sensation Grace Cannon, and roared approval when the is- land was beautifully illuminated in a countdown led by Mayor Diane Hanson. Plus, Lori Schell from Kids Cottage busily worked with a group of children on crafts as the adults sang carols and enjoyed a festive cocktail party by a warm bonfire. Many photos were snapped in front of the fledgling E-foot tree expected it to grow at a rate of one to two feet each year as the tradition continues. Thanks for this terrific team ef- fort go to Steve Montgomery for the staging, organization and mu- sic; Kelly Ranieri and Marie Hut- ton for the beautiful decorations; Alvin and Diana.from town man- agement, along with the police de- partment. The event was largely funded by the civic league's budg- Put American ingenuity to work This Thanksgiving, Delawareans drove to visit gallon of gas this past Thanksgiving travel week, family and friends in cars that gobble up too Delawareans Would have saved roughly much gas at the pump, which threatens our envi- $680,000 at the gas pump, or $1235 per family - ronment and unnecessarily stretches our wallets, enough to bring a few extra pumpkin pies to din- Recognizing this, President Obama has the op- ner. portunlty help jumpstart Delaware's economy, And that's just the savings from one holiday. break our dependence on oil, and cut global President Obama should seize this opportuni- warming pollution by setting strong new fuel el- ty to put American ingenuity to work by calling ficiency and pollution standards for cars and for cars and light trucks to get 60 miles to the trucks, gallon by 2025. On future Thanksgivings, clean- Getting Americans from point A to point B er cars would help Americans focus on clearing consumes more than half the oil used in the U.S., their plates, not clearing out their wallets at the so using American-ingenuity to make more effi- gas pump. cient cars and trucks is the easiest way to cut our Hamna Mela dependence on oil and save Delawareans money federal f'mkl associate at the pump. Environment America In fact, if the average car went 60 miles on a I iladelphia, Pa. et and town beautification fund, along with several generous pri- vate donations. Please enioy the decorations withyour family as you cruise down Route 1 into Dewey over the holidays. On another note, I am pleased, on behalf of the civic league board, to announce that David King has beenelected to the board of directors and among other con- tributi0ns, will assist us in distrib- uting to our members' descriptive and educationai information on important town issues. David has been a longtime and energetic ser- vant of the town on many of its most important committees, in- cluding budget and finance, and planning and zoning, among oth- ers. We are delighted that he has agreed to serve on the board amidst his many other responsi- bilities, and we all look forward to working with him. As we go into the new year, we hope you will send in to Treasurer Bob Duncan the modest annual dues of $20 per household to con- tinue to support our activities, de- signed to represent the property owners of Dewey Beach, provide educational information about town affairs, and sponsor events that bring our townspeople to- gether regardless of their political affiliations or varying points of view. These activities include the town beautification days, the Blue Banners Program, the annual can- didate forum and lunch, the annu- al meeting in May with featured speakers and barbeque by the bay, monthly happy hours during the summer months, our website with informational postings, and our new Tree Lighting event on Thanksgiving weekend. Feel free to download the membership form from Our website at dewey- beachcivicleague.com and send it in for the 2011 ,season. We welcome your impressions, suggestions and critiques any time, and hope you and your fami- ly have a wonderful and relaxing holiday season. David Main president Dewey Beach Civic League Efforts to save Milton Theatre bearing fruit The future of the arts in Sussex looks positive when you count all the supporters and their incredi- ble ongoing efforts to "Save the Historic Milton Theatre." The venerable theatre has be- come a lightning rod for growth of the community arts programs, and the Milton The,3tre has con- tributed to the success of local performing artists and musicians, aspiring students and fiimmakers. Regional and nationally recog- nized performers alike have ap- plauded the exceptional acoustics and unique performance arena. During this season of thanks and celebration, the board of the Milton Theatre would like to ac- knowledge the many dedicated volunteers who have given tireless efforts and had fun in the process! You know them, those selling tick: ets, concessions and ushering guests; Barbara Lillien and Mary Schwanky taking on office and website duties as volunteers extra- ordinaire. And others, like the supporters at the Cape Gazette, who have donated in many ways, aiding our fundraising efforts and helping fill the vintage velvet seats. Mike Kazala, general manager of Delmarva Media Company, along with his incredibly Cool Continued on page 8 a rare eorge Sharpley of Delaware's Depart- ment of Labor recent- ly gathered unemploy- ment statistics for Delaware at the request of Sen. George Bunting. Bunting wrote a note to Sen. Tony Deluca, president of the Delaware Senate, asking for help gathering the data. "If we knew the areas of unemployed," wrote Bunting, "it would be ad- vantageous in attacking and striving toward correcting that sector. We could work toward creating new jobs concentrating on uffliz'mg the same peopl who are unfortunately out of work." According to Sharpley's statis- tics, the greatest percentage of unemployed workers in Delaware is among men and women betweenthe ages of 16 and 19. There are currently 2,300 men unemployed in that category -24.5 percent of eligi- ble workers - and 1,200 women - 11.5 percent - unemployed in that age group. The greatest number of unemployed men - 5,100 - falls in the 25-34 age group while the greatest number of unemployed women- 3,700 - falls in the 45-54 age group. The lowest percentage of unem- ployed for men is in the 55-64 age group - 5.1percent (1,800) - and for women it's the 35-44 age group - 4.2 percent (1,7.00). By race and ethnicity, statis- tics show 22,000 whites unem- ployed (6.9 percent), 12,000 blacks unemployed (13.3 per- cent) and 3,100 Hispanics unem- ployed (9.7 percent). In notes accompanying his da- ta, Sharpley wrote: 'All of the above data come from the Cur- rent Population Survey, which forms the basis for our reported monthly unemployment statis- tics. Please keep in mind that these data pertain only to people who havd filed UI (unemploy- ment insurance) claims, which is typically only about half of the unemployed." Sharpley noted that in Sep- tember, 5,017 males and 5,462 fe- males claimed unemployment benefits in Delaware. Bunting said he didn't know what to make of the numbers. "They show that the sector with greatest unemployment is in re- tail trade, but my gut tells me that in Sussex County the biggest problem is in construc- tion. It must be a regional thing. I don't see a problem with retail trade unemployment in our area. The outlets are brimming with customers." Delaware's Attorney General Beau Biden stopped by the Gazette office a few weeks ahead of the election to discuss a number of issues. Many of the problems his office deals with come down to, he said, abuse of power. That can happen at the individual level, personally and over the internet, and right on up the ladder to corporate and governmental abuse of power. He said a tremendous amount of abuse comes via the internet where children violate some of the most time-honored and ba- sic safety rules: "For ages we have instructed our children: 'Don't talk to strangers' and yet they're doing it every day online through chat rooms and other ways," said Biden. "We tell them never get in a car with a Beat] Biden stranger, and yet through the internet, they are jump- ing in cars with strangers without even knowing it. It's staggering the number who meet on- line and who are willing to meet someone they don't know offiine." Biden said statistics show that one out of five children receives a sexual solicitation online. ''We need to apply our golden rules to online as well as ottline behavior." He talked about cyber bully- ing, where children and teenagers are abused via social networking sites. "We really have t.o help middle school stu- dents protect themselves. There's a big problem with so- ontim l on onge 8