Letters to the Editor -- December 14, 2012

Dr. Bunting responds to previous letter

I’d like to offer some clarification on the comments made by Mr. Lawrence Mayer in his letter to the editor in the Dec. 7 edition of the Coastal Point.

The upcoming referendum on Jan. 29 was not referenced in the fall edition of the district newsletter because the publication was sent to the printer weeks before the Board of Education officially approved the referendum date. In addition, the district had not yet received state approval of its Certificates of Necessity for the proposed construction projects.

Per the newspaper’s policy, the newsletter had to be delivered to the Coastal Point’s printing press a week in advance of its Nov. 30 insertion date. We also had to allot a week to 10 days for the newsletter to be printed. Therefore, it was sent to the printer in early November, well before plans for the referendum had been finalized.

The Indian River School District will soon publish a special referendum edition of the newsletter, which will be inserted in the Coastal Point in mid-January. This publication will explain all aspects of the referendum, including the need for additional teachers and classroom space.

It is inaccurate to state that the district is attempting to conceal information from the public about the referendum. In fact, a district-issued press release was printed on Page A14 of the same edition in which Mr. Mayer’s letter appeared. The Indian River School District is committed to keeping our residents informed about these important initiatives and has begun an extensive marketing campaign that will continue until the referendum on Jan. 29.

To this end, we have established a special hotline at (302) 436-1079 for parents and community members to direct their questions about the referendum. Information is also available on the district Web site at www.irsd.net. Simply click on the referendum link under the “Links” heading on the left side of the home page.

The district will also host a series of public referendum meetings during the month of January. These sessions will be held on Jan. 7 at North Georgetown Elementary School, Jan. 10 at Long Neck Elementary School, Jan. 15 at Phillip C. Showell Elementary School and Jan. 17 at East Millsboro Elementary School. All meetings will begin at 7 p.m., and community members will have the opportunity to ask questions of district officials.

The proposed bond issue and current expense initiatives are necessary to provide the best possible learning environment and educational programs for our students. We sincerely thank the public for its past support and hope our parents and community members will vote for these important initiatives on Jan. 29.

Dr. Susan Bunting, Superintendent
Indian River School District

Reader offers facts on federal policy

Here are some facts from the Congressional Budget Office that show between 1979 and 2005 the inflation-adjusted income of families in the middle income distribution rose 21 percent. Over the same period, the income of the very rich, the top 100th of 1 percent of the income distribution, rose by 480 percent. In 2005 dollars, the average annual income of that group rose from $4.2 million to $24.3 million.

Some of this disparity in income growth had to do with government policy tilting to the advantage of the wealthy, attacks on organized labor and financial deregulation.

The budget office also shows that federal tax burden has fallen for all income classes but has fallen much more, as a percentage of income, for the wealthy. Tax rates on corporate profits, capital gains and dividends have all fallen, while the payroll tax, the major tax paid by most workers, has gone up.

Seven years later and we are coming out of one of the worst recessions in history and the gap has only grown wider between the middle class and the very wealthy.

Elizabeth Warren, the great advocate for consumer’s rights, and the new senator-elect from Massachusetts, expressed it this way.

“There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody. You built a factory out there — good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers that the rest of us paid to educate... Part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.”

The working class needs a break. The top 2 percent will make out just fine.

Beth Doty
Rehoboth Beach

FOSCL thankful for support

The Friends of South Coastal Library’s Book Sale Committee extends a heartfelt “thank you” to the community for its generous response of donations of books to FOSCL’s Book Drive on Saturday, Dec. 8, in front of the Giant Food in Millville. This was the Book Sale Committee’s first book drive, and it was a resounding success!

Mark Kane, Giant Food store manager, and Gina Hoffman, assistant manager, kindly allowed the FOSCL Book Sale Committee to pitch our tables and ourselves in front of the Millville store to collect donations of books for our bi-annual book sales in February and in August. Thanks also to John Rubinsohn, Tom Markowski and Fulton Loppatto for their assistance in loading and transporting the donated materials. Though the day was dreary, we had a great time meeting our neighbors in the community!

We thank Mark, Gina and Giant Food for their support, and we thank the community for their generosity. Donated materials will be in our Winter Book Sale in February, and all proceeds benefit the South Coastal Library and Cultural Center.

Please note that the library is continuously accepting gently used donations of hardbacks, paperbacks, children’s books, teen books, DVDs and CDs. We ask that donations be not more than 10 years old; and we cannot accept encyclopedias or textbooks. So bring your donations to the library and save the dates of Feb. 15, 2013, and Feb. 16, 2013, for the Friends of South Coastal Library’s Winter Book Sale.

Theo Loppatto, Chair
Lois Rubinsohn
Audrey Young
Virginia Nee
Art Melvin
Fran Markowski
FOSCL Book Sale Committee

Reader: Christmas should be equal

The official Town of Bethany Beach monthly calendars which are posted on the billboards located near the flagpole, and at the railing at the boardwalk, have Hannukah listed but not Christmas. Dec. 8 shows a festive menorah, but for Christmas day it says “Office Closed.” That’s not right.

Either list all religious holidays or list none (which would be a shame, in my opinion). But if you’re going to list Hannukah, you should list Christmas. Or has the Town of Bethany Beach gone too politically correct (because the word “Christ” is in Christmas?)?

I’ve got nothing against listing Hannukah, a beautiful season for our Jewish friends, but Christmas deserves mention, too, in “equal billing.”

Mike Infurnari
Bethany Meadows

Reader praises business’ spirit

I would just like to take a moment and recognize a local business for going above and beyond.

Recently, a colleague’s mother had contacted Georgia House in Selbyville to order a party platter to be delivered to our offices, as her daughter was to be married on 12/12/12, however, through tragic circumstances, the wedding will not take place. My colleague’s mother thought this may take her daughter’s mind off the day and the situation.

When my friend’s mother explained her reason for the small platter, Kim Swanstrom with Georgia House immediately and without question offered to donate the platter. We are overwhelmed with the generosity and kindness that Georgia House has shown to someone they have never met. It is the true spirit of giving and we are lucky to have a business like Georgia House that steps up to the plate — no questions asked.

Our community is blessed to have such a strong partner, and I hope that the spirit of giving fills us all this holiday season!

Donna Stigler