Letters to the Editor -- August 13, 2010

Couple grateful for thoughtful youths


This Friday past, my wife and I decided to have a late lunch and go to the Bethany Boardwalk after for some shopping. Upon exiting the car, my wallet fell to the ground and I didn’t realize it till I was up by the bandstand.

I immediately returned to my car and started looking for it, when I was approached by a young lady from Olney, Md., somewhere between 12 and 14 years of age, asking if I had lost my wallet. She was with a group of friends, and they had found my wallet. The group split up, some staying in the area of my car in case I came back and the others taking the wallet to the police.

I acknowledged that, in fact, I had lost my wallet. The young lady told me her friend had it and was attempting to locate a police officer. Her friend approached us and said she knew about where the second half of the group was and took off to find them.

The friend returned with my wallet, completely intact, money, cards, etc. Once again, my wife and I headed off to the boardwalk, when we were approached by a young man and his friend. They were the second half of the group that had attempted to find the police officer. He explained that he had gone through my wallet to find my ID and phone number and that was why my cards were out of place.

My only regret was that we were unable to locate their parents to tell them how proud they should be of this group of young people.

Jerry and Marcia Sellman ~ Selbyville

Frankford resident questions council


Regarding Frankford’s Aug. 2 meeting:

Greg Welch, a longtime resident and taxpayer, addressed the town on two primary issues: (1) Why the town was charging new, hiked water rates that went into effect on July 1, 2010, for water that was used months before July 1? This was the first time Mr. Welch had brought up this particular issue.

(2) Why rates were being changed without amending the town water ordinance. This questionable act of billing consumers the new rate for water used before the new rate went into effect had been done in 2008, as well, and was brought to the town’s attention at the June 28 budget meeting by myself. Pres. Lynch stated on both occasions that this way of hiking water rates was legal according to [Dennis] Schrader, the town attorney.

After Mr. Welch asked the council if they would ask for guidance from the Department of Justice, and jokingly making a gesture with his armpit, immediately, Terry Truitt called in Chief Dudley, and Welch was removed in short order.

Myself and Mr. Fellman had questioned chronically late water bills for the past six years. This was first brought to their attention in 2006 by Eunice Hollaway and myself. I, again, on this night brought to their attention customers not having 30 days, required by the ordinance, to pay their water bills before being subjected to a penalty because the water bills are mailed out (postmarked) seven to 10 days after the invoice date on the bill.

The council once again ignored this fact and circumvented the issue. Mr. Fellman complained that his account with the town was still being discussed with his unauthorized tenants and asked that it be stopped.

I suggested to the council that water bills should be discussed only with the account holder instead of with tenants. This provides two-party discussions on bills instead of three. Presently, the town discusses the bills with tenants, which promotes confusion. The council never came to a unanimous conclusion on this issue.

So the battle continues to bring our town up to a higher standard for all the residents as council members simply disregard these issues and continue business as usual.

Jerry Smith ~ Frankford

Editor’s Note: Our reporter who covered the meeting in question said that Welch was not physically removed from the meeting, but did leave on his own volition after being asked.

Bethany resident questions Pratt

Editor’s note: The following letter was addressed to DNREC Shoreline and Waterway Section Administrator Tony Pratt and was forwarded to the Coastal Point for publication.

I have noticed in recent news articles that the COE [U.S. Army Corps of Engineers] has been allotted $8.2 million for the restoration of the damaged dunes in Bethany Beach and South Bethany.

I have expressed my concerns numerous times in the past about the visual effect of the 16-foot dune elevation only along the length of the boardwalk in Bethany Beach.

I have personally enjoyed the view from the southern reach of the boardwalk, where the elevation of the dune has been reduced to about 14 feet. Others have expressed similar pleasure in the enjoyment of the view of the beach and ocean since the storm damage reduced the elevation along that limited stretch of boardwalk.

There has been indication in the past that the COE was intending to evaluate the adequacy of a suggested 14-foot dune elevation only along the length of beach in Bethany Beach that enjoys the additional protection of the timber bulkhead parallel to the boardwalk.

I have three simple questions:

• Is the COE aware of the timber bulkhead along the length of the Bethany Beach boardwalk?

• Has the COE made the above referenced study? If so, the result?

• If not, will they find the time and funds to do so before the scheduled initiation of work in the fall?

I recognize you are a very busy man in a very demanding job, and the issue of the 14-foot dune elevation is an old, worn issue, but I would appreciate any response to my questions.

John J Stamm ~ Bethany Beach

Thanks for those attending peace vigil


St. Matthew, Chapter 5 and Verses 4 and 9, says, “Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.”

“Love keeps no record of wrong.”

I would like to take this opportunity to express my heartfelt thanks to the many wonderful friends, partners, concerned citizens, families, community residents and leaders, children, adults, law enforcement, media, churches and anyone else who I certainly do not want to forget for their support, time, planning, hard work and attendance at the second annual March for Peace, Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2010, starting at West Rehoboth and ending at Burton Village, commemorating my son, the late Coley Stephan “Pete” “Shabazz” Marchtmon.

The purpose of this vigil was to take back our community from those who seek to do harm to others. I believe in the “Village Philosophy” passed on by African and Chinese cultures. The proverb, “It takes a village to raise a child” promotes the message that we are all responsible for the wellbeing of our children and surrounding communities, whether as parents, family, neighbors, friends, co-workers or just simply members of the community.

To protect our children and communities, we must continue to prevent these kind of acts that happened to my son and others.

My son Pete’s death was caused by a violent act, when four men beat him up, due to hearsay in the neighborhood. This event startled members of the West Rehoboth community, as it was not indicative of Pete’s lifestyle.

“When you give it to God, healing begins to take place. It’s time to forgive.”

Someone once said, “There are three kinds of people - those who need a friend, those who could have been a friend and those who will be a friend when the need arise.” You all have been a friend to me; for that I am grateful.

The West Rehoboth community has garnered the support of many organizations, individuals, businesses, media, law enforcement, community leaders and others. I would like to see this kind of peace continue on a daily basis.

Again, thank you all my friends for life and for keeping me in your daily prayers.

Eleanor Whaley ~ Mother and President of West Side New Beginnings Inc.