Letters to the Editor — October 31, 2014

Gilmour gets thanks for efforts


A special thank-you to Sara Gilmour! On behalf of the students and families that Pathways to Success Inc. serves here in Sussex County, we thank Sarah Gilmour, Pathways to Success outreach coordinator, and Chicks for Charity for an incredible fundraising event at Fish On restaurant at the Villages of Five Points in Lewes.

Sarah Gilmour worked tirelessly with our local businesses, gathering items to be raffled at the event. Our hats go off to Sarah and the local businesses whose generous donations contributed immensely to the success of the evening.

The work that Chicks for Charities does to support charitable organizations that are essential community resource agencies in Sussex County is to be commended. Their ongoing efforts to help area non-profit organizations provide services that aid kids, families, the elderly, abandoned animals, and those that are under-served, is vital to the communities we serve.

Their support aids Pathways to Success Inc. in the continuation of our mission to educate, inform and empower the families of the students we mentor at the Cape Henlopen and Sussex Technical high schools. It will also help our ongoing efforts to assist residents of our under-served communities to understand and advocate their rights under the Fair Housing Act.

Fay Blake, Director
Pathways to Success Inc.

Reader frustrated with lack of power


My wife and I moved to our current home in Blackwater Village in December of 1998. We have enjoyed our comfortable home in a quiet and friendly neighborhood less than five miles from the Atlantic Ocean at Bethany Beach, Del.

Our only exception is that we never know when our little piece of paradise will suddenly be without electricity. The kicker is that it’s not the whole development out of power, it’s the nine homes at the end of Shawnee Drive.

I realize that nine customers in the grand scheme of things are not as much consequence for a company the size of Delmarva Power; however, you all enjoy being a monopoly, guaranteed a profit for your services. After 16 years I, for, one would like to get the same reliable service others in my area are getting.

To be fair, the crews from your Millsboro service depot do come, work for several hours on each outage, on the same equipment, and get it working again. It seems to me, however, that after 16-plus years of chewing gum and bailing wire, the equipment that continues to fail may need to be replaced.

I am copying this letter to my state senator, Gerald W. Hocker, Rep. Ronald E. Gray, Public Service Commissioner Mathew Hartigan and HOA President Gary Hornbacher.

I will look for a prompt response from your office on this matter.

William C. Jones, Sr.

Reader defends health, care of waterways


My name is Les Warrick, and I am 64 years old and have been going to Possum Point at the Indian River since I was weeks old.

My grandfather bought our cottage here in 1947, and it was such a grand place to go during the summer. I recall being able to walk across the river at low tide on the sandy gravely river bed in crystal clear water, only having to swim the channel to get to the other side, but now the muck on the river bed is at least two to three feet deep, making this impossible.

At the time, I also remember hardly being able to get a rowboat past the bridge on SR 331 to get up into Wharton’s Branch, but now this opening is 60, 70, maybe 80 feet wide. This muck in the river is from the discharge from Vlasic food processing plant over their 30-plus years of operation washing the silt out of the marsh into the river via Wharton’s Branch.

To add insult to injury, the unsuccessful dredging operation by the Army Corp of Engineers many years ago has left the river un-navigable most of the time, other than maybe getting up and down the actual “channel” at high tide, as the area is nothing but a big mud flat. Then the federal government abandoned the river from the power plant to the Town of Millsboro, leaving their mess up to you, the State of Delaware.

I might add that “nothing” has been done to rectify this situation for over 25 years, and it still continues to get even worse, with nothing in operation at the plant site. We will not be able to crab or fish on the river anymore due to fear of contamination or enjoy any type of water sport, such as water skiing.

Even our time on the river is very limited by the tides and weather, in such that a westerly wind blows the water out and we are stuck. My children and grandchildren, along with any future generations have lost, maybe forever, all the wonderful experiences I had, due to inland industrialization and lax oversight or monitoring.

We have protected the coast but ignored many other treasures our state holds, or held. This damage, destruction and lack of responsibility that has already occurred to “Our Indian River” is outrageous to say the least, let alone the environmental instability of water supply in the area, which is of the utmost concern. And you wonder why the concern for the proposed chicken processing facility, which could possibly quadruple this discharge rate into Wharton’s Branch and the river, along with all the other environmental concerns associated with it?

Believe me, I know the state of our state, but at some point the line has to be drawn and people need to be held accountable to make the hard decisions that are real and in everyone’s best interest, not just hypothetical ones. Therefore, I am against any further discharges into any waterways.

Les Warrick
Possum Point