Letters to the Editor — December 13, 2013

Bennett offers look at bypass proposal


I am sorry to say that the specter of the Route 113 bypass has surfaced again (it never really disappeared), as DelDOT is on record to issue corridor preservation notices to all affected residents in 2014. If you do not know where your property is in regard to the almost 20-mile stretch from Millsboro to Selbyville, you must find out if you are in the scope of this disastrous “road to nowhere.”

This paper has chronicled the disruptive path of this earthen tsunami with its five major bridges, interchanges near schools and minority communities that have never been notified of their fate.

Such things are possible when good men do nothing and bad men do everything. Strong business interests on the Millsboro Town Council have driven this plan to envelope homes, farms, creeks, rivers, ponds and watersheds. You must contact every legislator you know and demand to know their position on this. I really can’t speak for any of our lawmakers, but I can pray for God to guide them to do the right thing.

This week, a person close to a local legislator told me to stop speaking out about the bypass and to stop writing letters to the editor. My response is twofold: I will continue to write because the last time I checked, this is the United States of America, not Beijing. Secondly, I will add this person to my prayer list, as well.

Carrie W. Bennett
Bennett Orchards

Proposed moratorium irks chair of Dem group


“I’ve had constituents that were unaware their homes were vulnerable to flooding until their yards started filling up with water. Once that happens, they are left scrambling for solutions.” That statement was made by Rep. Ruth Briggs King (R) last February after she and other legislators toured several Sussex County communities that are beset by stormwater and flooding problems.

Yet Rep. Briggs-King, along with 15 other Kent and Sussex lawmakers, sent a letter on Dec. 5 to DNREC Secretary Collin O’Mara requesting “a moratorium of at least three years for Sussex and Kent counties on the implementation of the new State Stormwater Management Regulations scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, 2014.”

Why do they want a delay? According to their letter, “The proposed regulations will have a chilling effect on economic development in Sussex and Kent counties. Because of the geography and high water tables in Sussex County, compliance with the new requirements will be very costly and may have a negative effect on near-term and future development.”

During the seven years the regulations were developed, there were numerous workshops and hearings, as well as public comments from hundreds of individual and groups. The final regulations were published on April 1, 2013, but DNREC delayed the effective date for nine months in order to offer workshops and outreach. And now 16 legislators don’t want the regulations to go into effect in Sussex and Kent? (They’re OK with New Castle, though.)

I strongly urge Secretary O’Mara to reject this request and ensure the regulations go in effect throughout the state on Jan. 1. Better management of stormwater will reduce the economic and environmental impact of flooding and improve the water quality of our streams, rivers and bays.

I will leave it to the constituents of the legislators who signed to decide whose interests were represented when they asked for a delay because of the “negative effect on future development”: Reps. Ron Gray (R), Danny Short (R), Donald Blakey (R), Ruth Briggs King (R), Tim Dukes (R), Harvey Kenton (R), Jack Peterman (R), Jeff Spiegelman (R), Bobby Outten (R), Dave Wilson (R), John Atkins (D); Sens. Robert Venables (D), Gary Simpson (R), Gerald Hocker (R), Brian Pettyjohn (R) and Dave Lawson(R).

Joanne Cabry, Chair
Progressive Democrats of Sussex County

Frankford officials battle proposed bypass

Editor’s note: The following letter was addressed to the Delaware Department of Transportation and was sent to the Coastal Point for publication.

Please accept this letter into evidence that the Town Council for the Town of Frankford does not support the DelDOT Route 113 Eastern Bypass Project commonly referred to as the “Blue Route.” A project of this magnitude will greatly impact the Town and its surrounding areas in a negative manner. The Town serves three schools, four churches and over 702 residential properties just within our 2.24-mile Town limits.

In closing, we feel as though every measure should be taken to keep the current 113/Dupont Highway on alignment and utilize the existing areas/medians and right-of-ways to address future expansion if warranted.

If we can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Jesse Truitt, President; Joanne Bacon, Vice-President; Cheryl Workman, Secretary/Treasurer; Charles Shelton, Council Member; Pamela Davis, Council Member
Frankford Town Council