A Vote For Full-Time Residency Amendment
I am writing in hopes the Worcester County Planning Commission will return a favorable decision with regard to the proposed amendment concerning full time residency in White Horse Park.
I am 63 years old, wheelchair bound, require tube feeding and I sleep on a ventilator. My house has been modified through county funding, state funding and federal funding so that I can live independently in my own home. Through a Medicaid Waiver, I have a Self Direct Plan that allows me to pay two employees to aid me in my mission to remain independent. The state and federal governments have decided this plan saves an enormous amount of money for them versus a traditional nursing home.
To uproot me from my home would wreak havoc in my life. I could never find a place to rent that would afford me all of the modifications that I have here. These modifications are by no means luxury items, but truly necessary to live independently as I do now.
The park also provides guards 24/7 and is a gated community that gives me peace of mind in relationship to my safety. The staff of White Horse Park are always there to lend me a helping hand or deliver my packages.
My only income is Social Security disability and this doesn’t go far when I am already paying a mortgage. There is no money for renting something else for four months.
The thought that I may need to move is taking a toll on me emotionally as well, as I have no place to go.
The amendment goes beyond me and will also affect the two employees that assist me in my daily activities, allowing me to remain independent.
So, I plead with you to please consider on my behalf so I can finish out my life in the home I have owned since 1984.
Thank you, and God Bless.
Taxed Without A Voice
Being taxed with no voice is not a new topic to most Ocean City property owners, but is it now time for a change? Here are the numbers: Ocean City nets more than $84 million in annual revenue and more than half of that is directly from residential rental property and property associated taxes.
The population of OC (permanent residents) is less than 7,000, yet condos and homes rented to tourists number over 100,000. The point is the vast majority of revenue in OC is earned by the rental of properties owned by people not themselves Ocean City residents. Those property owners have no vote in OC and as such, have no say in who is elected, at what rate they themselves are taxed, nor how tax dollars are spent. If you don’t like that, you can sell your Ocean City property and invest that capital elsewhere. There is one last gotcha for the property owner however, Ocean City gets 7.5% of the profit made from that sale. Outrageous. Isn’t it time property owners had a voice in Ocean City?
Council’s Budget Work Deserves Another Look
Our elected officials recently completed the 2020 Ocean City budget review. I chuckle how the majority of the council patted themselves on the back for doing such a great job of spending millions of dollars of the taxpayers’ money. They all talked about their efforts to keep property taxes low at 46 cents for each $100 of assessed property value while providing the level of services needed to operate the Town of Ocean City.
Did they do a good job? Let’s take a look back at how they did with the 2019 budget. The council approved the 2019 budget of $129.9 million in May 2018. But the final 2019 budget will be $141 million, about 10 percent higher, because the council added a March 2019 budget amendment to increase spending by $11.3 million. This figure is shown on page 112 of the council’s March 4, 2019 meeting information packet.
This means that the council’s 2019 budget brought in excess revenues of $11.3 million that the council subsequently spent by approving the March 2019 budget amendment.
Councilman Dennis Dare, who has been involved with Ocean City budgets for 32 years, recently reported that one penny on the tax rate brings in revenue of $899,063. Using Councilman Dare’s $899,063 figure, this $11.3 million increase was equal to about eight cents of a property tax rate. If the council had not spent the $11.3 million, the 2019 budget year would have ended with a significant surplus that could have been used to lower the 2020 property tax rate from 46 cents to 38 cents.
Read Mueller’s Report
I ask everyone to read the Mueller report. It is 448 pages, but as citizens of Maryland’s Lower Shore, and as Americans, we owe it to ourselves, our grandchildren, and our country to read it.
I started reading the report, and found it to be readable for someone like me, a voter who cares about our democracy. This report is not full of legalese or language that only attorneys can digest.
The Mueller report was written for us, the American people, and for Congress, our representatives. We as taxpayers paid for this report, and we as voters should take the responsibility and time to digest it.
If you are like me, you may not want to read every word. That is okay. However, I ask that you take time to read and think about it.
Susan P. Buyer
All About Money In OC
No longer will I or many I know be attending affairs or events in central Ocean City. The parking and the lack of respect for individuals shows the path Ocean City has decided to take and it’s all about money.
I’ve been coming to Ocean City since 1952 and seen many changes but of late I no longer feel safe on the streets and its one of the trashiest resorts on the east coast. I will spend my money in Delaware going forward that cares about its community and families.
I sat at a stop light on Route 50 heading down Baltimore Street through six-plus red lights because there were no traffic officials there to stop the blocking of traffic. When you want real money to be spend, make sure the difference is felt and seen by the visitors and owners.
Delegate Wrong On Pittsville Water Crisis
A recent story from The Daily Times on the Pittsville water crisis made many folks in town myself included angry when we saw our Delegate Wayne Hartman say, “The color of the water is an aesthetic issue.” Delegate Hartman is wrong. The water crisis isn’t just an “aesthetic issue.” It is a financial issue for working families, single parents and eldery residents living on fixed incomes who now have another expense to worry about when budgets are already stretched.
It is a health issue because residents have had skin reactions, burning eyes, and more negative health effects due to the quality of the water. Finally, this crisis is a peace of mind issue. It took Senator Mary Beth Carozza and Hartman three months after this issue arose to even bother coming out to Pittsville or commenting on the matter at all. Not only that but, residents have also been unable to trust their local leaders as the stories to why this issue has happened has changed several times through the months and there has been a lack of transparency the whole time.
We needed you to lead and make sure we got what we needed to get by until this crisis was resolved. However, you were three months late on responding and when you finally did you completely failed to understand the severity of this issue and tried to frame us as if we had nothing to complain about. It is clear to see you have failed us Delegate Hartman and this is something we won’t soon forget.
(The write is the chair of The Lower Shore Progressive Caucus.)
Fund Support Appreciated
A special thank you to everyone in the community who contributed money to make the Franklin Burroughs Golf Scholarship Award Fund possible.
To The Dispatch Editor Steve Green for printing pictures and articles; to Cecil Tull, ABC Printing, who printed the award certificates; and to Al “Hondo” Handy for all his help. May God bless each of you.
From 2008 to 2019, 17 young people have been given the award. This will be the last year the Franklin Burroughs Golf Scholarships Awards will be given. Thank you, again, everyone for all you did to make this possible.
The Woodlands, Texas