Cable Concerns Merit
As residents of Ocean City, many of us obtain our cable TV, internet, telephone and other data services from Comcast. If you review your monthly Comcast invoice, you will note on page two, a list of charges labeled: Taxes, Surcharges & Fees. Under this heading, you will note: Franchise Fee. Are you aware that this monthly charge ($4.11, plus tax) reflects income to the Town of Ocean City collected by Comcast and forwarded to the town?
At a recent Mayor and Council Meeting, a Comcast representative provided a summary of Comcast services available to subscribers in Ocean City. In the course of questions from various council members, it became apparent that the services and equipment available to Ocean City customers of Comcast are less than optimal. The Comcast representative acknowledged that this is true, in part because of limited supplies of equipment, etc. currently on hand. It also became apparent that some of the advertised Comcast services and equipment are available to “new” subscribers but not to “current” subscribers.
This means that long-time Ocean City subscribers have not had their equipment updated to new technology, while “new” customers are provided the very latest products and service. The council took no action in this regard, nor did the council call upon its franchisee (Comcast) to remedy this situation on behalf of its residents. A recent call to Comcast local service number advised that number had been discontinued.
Perhaps the Mayor and Council will schedule a discussion of this matter at an upcoming meeting, but don’t count on it.
Appeal A Success
We believe in angels. And we have proof they are everywhere on Delmarva.
Coastal Hospice’s annual Angel Appeal raises funds that allow us to provide charity care to our critically ill patients who lack the resources to pay for the care they desperately need. Last year, we provided more than $776,000 in charity care to our patients.
This year, the angels of Delmarva donated $76,268 during our Angel Appeal. These gifts will bring comfort and support to those in need all through the year ahead.
We sincerely thank everyone who generously donated to our Angel Appeal drive. You are all truly angels.
Alane K. Capen
(The writer is the president of Coastal Hospice.)
Voters Should Seek Changes
I’m sure by now everyone is aware of the large debt our country is faced with brought about by our negligence and trust in our elected officials. They managed in less than 100 years to turn our country from a creditor nation into the largest debtor nation in the history of the world. That debt continues to grow, while I sit and write this letter, with no reduction in sight. With this thought and concern I decided to investigate just one small portion of the cost of our government: The number of agencies and their assistance programs. The information I’m going to present can be verified by asking the right question on a search on the internet.
The first thing I wanted to know was the number of agencies and the number of assistance programs they administer. The total agencies are 67 and the total number of programs are 2,206. With this information, I thought it would be important to know which are the top agencies with regard to the number of regional offices and the number of programs they administer:
1. The top agency is the Dept. of Health & Human Services with 466 programs and 19 regional offices.
2. Next on the list the Dept. of the Interior with 270 programs and 15 regional offices.
3. Next came the Dept. of Agriculture with 251 programs and 18 regional offices.
4. Then the Dept. of Justice with 125 programs and 21 regional offices.
5. The Dept. of Housing & Urban Development with 125 programs and 7 offices.
6. And the last one of major interest was the Environmental Protection Agency with 101 programs and 23 regional offices.
I think by looking at the list you will begin to understand my “reason for concern”.
Realizing that all these agencies and programs are supported by taxes and fees collected by the government caused me, because of my age (76), to ask another question: How many people are receiving Social Security, SSI & Disability (including people under the age of 65 and other reasons)? The following are the numbers released by the government as of December 2013: (a) 41,467,000 that are 65 and older and (b) 21,467,000 Disabled, under 65 & other persons.
Next since all of the above payments are dependent on the health of our economy I looked at some of the latest unemployment figures listed by the Dept. of Labor. As of Dec. 21, the total number was 5,693,902. This number included both seasonal and non-seasonal claims. Of course, you understand these are government totals and do not include the total number of people who have dropped out of the work force.
The last information I want to present to you is from the Dept. of Health and Human Services. I think you’ll find this information disturbing. Did you know that the total amount of monthly income you can make and still receive Welfare is $1,000? Also, did you know there are 39 states where Welfare pays more than an $8-per-hour job. There are six states that pay more than a $12-per-hour job and eight states that pay more than the average pay of a U.S. teacher. Hard to believe isn’t it?
After reading this information, I’m sure you’ll understand my reason for concern. I believe the next two election cycles will determine which direction our country will take into the future. We’ll either continue on the course we’re on now or take the first steps needed to return our country to the Republic form of government our founding fathers designed. Whichever direction the voters decide to take both will be painful. I won’t be alive to live out the results of what the voters decide but my children, grandchildren and great grandchildren will have to live with the results. I hope the people, when voting, stop voting party lines and start looking at each person and what that person believes before voting. Changes need to be made and it will be up to us. I can only hope and pray the voters make the right choice.
Paul St. Andre
Thanks To Community
We know that 2014 will be a great year if the start was any indication. The Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce and the Quiet Resorts Charitable Foundation (QRCF) would like to thank the community for its support of the Hair of the Dog race and 18th Annual Leo Brady Exercise Like the Eskimo’s plunge.
On New Year’s Day morning, nearly 1,000 runners, plungers, spectators, party-goers and volunteers gathered in downtown Bethany Beach. Our events were aiming to raise money for scholarships and grants, and we were awed by the outpouring of support. We are thrilled to announce that more than $6,000 was raised for local students and local non-profits.
These events represent a partnership between those in the business community, represented by the chamber, and those who support non-profits, represented by the QRCF. Together, we seek to improve life in the Quiet Resorts for residents and visitors alike.
We could not do our work without generosity from a variety of sources. We received amazing support from the Town of Bethany Beach, Bethany Beach Police, Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company and EMS, Delaware State Fire Police, Bethany Beach Public Works, you and our sponsors.
Presenting Sponsors were Anne Powell and Jennifer Hughes Team, Ocean Atlantic/Southeby’s International Realty and Mango’s; Supporting Sponsors were Coastal Point, Coastal Tented events, Tidepool Toys and Games, and Event Sponsors were 3rd Wave Brewing Company, D3Corp., DJ Padraig, Delaware 105.9 News Talk, Bethany Blues, Bethany Beach Books, The Cottage Café, Evergreene Homes, Harris Teeter, Carl M. Freeman Foundation, Jeff Baxter Mortgage Team, Tidewater Physical Therapy, Wilgus Associates, DiFebo’s Restaurant, Giant Food, Off the Hook, Law Offices of Scott & Shuman, Pepsi, Pine Mountain Water, PNC Bank, and Steve Alexander Realtor. We also received enthusiastic support from locals and visitors, spectators, and volunteers.
We would like to extend special thanks to Hair of the Dog chair, volunteer Brigit Taylor and her committee. They, and many others, contributed hundreds of hours to make the events great.
On behalf of our members and volunteers, thanks again to all for the past and future support of our organizations and the work we do.
(Banks is the president of the Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce. Alexander is the president of the Quiet Resorts Charitable Foundation.)