Voices From The Readers

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Group Thinks Pines

Deserves Slots Money

Editor:

(The following letter was addressed to Delegate Norman H. Conway.)

We are writing as co-chairpersons of Citizens for Ocean Pines Equity (C.O.P.E.), a diverse and non-partisan group of Ocean Pines citizens.

C.O.P.E. is seeking equitable treatment for Ocean Pines in the distribution of slots impact funds. To that end, we respectfully request legislation be introduced to change the legislated distribution of the total coming to Worcester County as follows: Worcester County, 55 percent, Ocean City, 20 percent, Ocean Pines, 15 percent, and Berlin, 10 percent.

C.O.P.E. believes the size of Ocean Pines, its immediate proximity to the proposed slots facility, and most importantly the number of registered voters relative to Ocean City, Berlin and the rest of county support our request. The following breakdown indicating voter numbers and the percent of slots impact funds in the original legislation also clearly makes our case for equity: Ocean Pines, 7,600 voters, 22 percent of voters, zero percent impact funds; Ocean City, 5,600 voters, 16 percent of voters, 20 percent impact funds; and Berlin, 2,500 voters, 7 percent of voters, 10 percent impact funds.

C.O.P.E. fully expects our three local legislators to work together to introduce and fully support legislation for changes in distribution to provide Ocean Pines with an equitable 15% share of the impact funds allocated to Worcester County.

Roseann Bridgman

Dan Stachurski

(The writers are the co-chairs of C.O.P.E.)

Inauguration Should

Not Be Viewed In School

Editor:

(The following letter was addressed to Buckingham Elementary School Principal Roger Pacella regarding students and staff watching the presidential inauguration in the cafeteria/gym on Jan. 20.)

Concerning the upcoming special event at Buckingham Elementary School, I would like to explain why my child will not be attending. I am a product of this school system and have had children enrolled in Worcester County schools for many years. Never have I heard of pulling the entire school out of class to watch an inauguration, accompanied by such an overwhelming endorsement and celebratory fanfare. I guess I am to assume that previous inaugurations were of less importance. Or is this an unbridled attempt to indoctrinate the students at BES?

I know this school teaches the works of Dr. Martin Luther King. It was he who said we should be judging a man by the content of his character, not by the color of his skin. If this “special event” is being promoted for that reason, it flies directly in the face of Dr. King’s teachings. The need to explain that there is no room for family members who may want to attend, along with encouraging students to dress for the event, is political correctness gone haywire. When students are required to go with the flow and participate in the overwhelming media hype, it does little to foster true thought and education. Furthermore, when they see adults that they are taught to respect and look up to participating in this behavior, I believe it to be detrimental.

For those reasons, my child will not be attending school on Jan. 20.

Kimberly McAllister

Berlin

Business Center Is

A Waste of $300K

Editor:

I am always amazed by the condescending attitude of some of the Ocean City bureaucrats.

The only thing worse is the complacency of City Council members Joe Mitrecic, Lloyd Martin, Mary Knight and, so far, disappointing newcomer, Doug Cymek, who generally approves the bureacrats’ request.

A prime example of this is the proposed upgrade of the Ocean City Convention Center. From an economic point of view, it is clear to me that the convention center generally gets little use between Monday through Thursday and will always be a money loser for Ocean City. In the last two years, Ocean City financial records show that the convention center lost $12 million. The proposed $5 million expenditure to upgrade it will do little if any to change the situation.

For example, the bureaucrats are proposing to spend $300,000 for a business center as part of the convention center upgrade. For those who are not familiar with a business center, it is nothing but a room containing computers and other business-related machines. In the past, many hotels and other meeting areas had business centers.

But with the advent of laptop computers, Blackberrys, Wi-Fi internet connections and other advances in technology, the business center concept has become antiquated. According to a Sept. 17, 2007 article in the New York Times business section, the business center concept is becoming “obsolete” because of increasingly portable technology. It is unfortunate that Council members Mitrecic, Martin, Knight and Cymek will rubber stamp the bureaucrats’ request to spend another $5 million on money losing activity.

Veronica M. Potter

Ocean City

Happy To See Change

Editor:

I am not the only one who was horrified by what Solstice did to the Atlantic Hotel in Berlin. So many of my customers were faithful patrons of the “old” hotel. Not many of them have gone back. We have talked more about that than we have the selection of their plant material.

With scrunched up faces, they asked me if I was still creating the gardens there. Then they would sigh and say they didn’t think so. I told them that I would never have done that to the hotel. I wrapped my creativity around the hotel. It was the center of town, the focal point of Berlin. She deserved my best.

Before the dismantling and gutting of the old girl that fateful day in October, most of the staff was told they were no longer needed. Some had been there from the beginning. They later preferred staff with orange hair and questionable hand-washing ability.

Imagine a horse-drawn carriage in front of the Solstice Grille. Imagine Classical Christmas at the Solstice Grille. What about Dickens and New Years? I raised my son attending those memorable occasions that are no more.

I have much more to say, as I am apt to do, but I am trying to keep it short and sweet. I couldn’t speak before. I would have been perceived as the disgruntled gardener. I hoped the best for them, but in my heart knew it wasn’t good for Berlin, but they allowed it anyway.

Judy Ashton

Berlin

Timing Of Property

Purchase Questioned

Editor:

It was with some amusement and exasperation that I read the article, “County Forested Land Bought by State.” 

The article provided information about the need for the State to preserve forested areas on our county.  While I have no argument about conserving our woodlands, I question the timing of the purchase. 

With our state now boasting a huge deficit, and the Governor stating that we will all have to tighten our belts during the economic crunch – why would the state spend $14 million on a piece of property that probably isn’t fit for development anyway?  Who previously owned the property and what is their relationship to the governor?  Isn’t $3,000 per acre a bit much for wetlands? Couldn’t this purchase wait for better times?  Why burden taxpayers with this expense when many of us would rather see the money spent on our school systems and other services.

While I appreciate the news, I was hoping for a little investigative journalism. 

Chris Parks

Ocean City

Things I Like

Editor:

My new car alarm

The smell of fresh cut grass

The warmth of clean laundry

Sleeping through rainy nights

The quiet of snow

Reading by the fire

Having Stinky Beach to myself

Roller skating on the Boardwalk with my Ipod

Making someone laugh

Watching chick flicks with my girls

The smell of pine

Watching my dog eat peanut butter

Shellie Gronsbell

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