Voices From The Readers – September 4, 2020

Voices From The Readers – September 4, 2020

Ocean City Wrong To Deny Police Vehicle


After reading Editor Steve Green’s article last week in “The Way We See It” section of The Dispatch, I could not agree with him more concerning the purchase of the police department’s mule vehicle.

“The Mule” is a must for this town for all the reasons stated by Steve. Since the mule can easily access the beach, it would be nice if the police could use it to police the beach at night. Being in the beach stand business, and having my employees and myself show up to their stands and find all kinds of Godawful things, is never a pleasant experience.

Here is a sample of some of the things you will encounter on a regular basis. You can expect urine, just about every day. And it always lines the sand directly in front of your boxes. In order to get a box open, you inevitably have to step in it. As a seasoned veteran, I no longer think about and just step in it and open the boxes. My employees do not like that part of the job, but they manage. But probably worse than stepping in it, is the pee stench as the sun heats up. We have eight stands, and all but two of the stands have experienced the next little treat. Some more than once.

I hold the record this summer for being greeted by a pile of human feces, seven times. It is absolutely disgusting. One time this summer, it was not only in the sand in front of the box, but smeared down the box. Thanks to Sergeant Tim Ubel for helping us by getting the necessary stuff from the beach patrol office to clean the box and remove the nasty mess. Other things we are greeted with include beer cans, liquor bottles, syringes, used condoms, people in sleeping bags using the condoms, broken bottles, weed, cigarette butts, graffiti on the boxes, boxes that have been tampered with and sometimes destroyed. Just last week, I showed up to work and someone had put a gigantic hole in the top of one of the boxes which required us to replace the entire top, and that is not cheap.

Okay, back to the mule. Many years ago, if my memory serves me correctly, the police used to ride up and down the beach and shine a light toward the Boardwalk. Any illicit activity going on in front of the beach boxes was caught and taken care of. People knew they weren’t supposed to be on the beach after hours, and with police patrols happening, you didn’t have to show up to work and clean up somebody’s disgusting human waste. Since there are no shining lights anymore, people know they are safe in front of the boxes, and can do whatever they please. Perfect cover. Sleep all night there, wake in the morning, pee and poop on the beach boxes, leave all your bottles and cans, and all the other illegal stuff, then off you go.

Beach stands are a big money maker for the Town of Ocean City. This summer they have collected $1,300,000 from all the participants. I am not ashamed, actually I am ashamed to say, that I pay $222,900 of that $1,300,000 freight for eight beach stands. Of course, when we bid on these stands back in December, we were bidding with the assumption that all the major events that bring so many people to town would be happening. Well, we all know that didn’t happen, as the coronavirus hit, and the beaches have been ghost town like compared to what they normally would have been.

Many hotels have been half full, and the entire month of June it seemed like a third world country with all the fights and stabbings. Many hotels had many cancellations when the word got out that Ocean City was not a safe place to be. Fortunately, we have a “hardship” clause in our contract. But I found out that the “hardship” clause doesn’t apply to a worldwide pandemic. I am left to figure out what might be considered a “hardship” to help us out, financially. The only thing I can think of that might trump a worldwide pandemic might be Armageddon. But maybe not.

So I am left to go bankrupt, but still get to clean up the waste products of other humans. (oh, I forgot, vomit is another thing we get to clean up). So Ocean City, let’s get the Mule, ride up and down the beach at night, and help clean this place up. Hey, take some of my $222,900 and get a couple of them. If you can throw away $100,000 dollars for an air show (which was no help to the beach stands) that lasted one day, $20,000 is chump change. Burton Anderson, I need your help.

Drew Haugh

Ocean City


Support For Air Service


Lately I have received many requests to write my “elected officials” to try to save Trooper 4 and/or Trooper 6 from COVID budget cuts. I wish it would help but I have no say. I am a “out of town property owner.” So allow me the chance to rant in your paper.

As a longtime member of the local fire department, I have been on too many medical helicopter landings. I know survival depends on getting someone to trauma care in the first hour. Your closest helicopter is about 12 miles away. Then the flight to Shock Trauma is another 30 to 45 minutes.

Your golden hour is almost over. Loss of Trooper 4 could be life or death to someone you know.

In the early day, I remember waiting 25 minutes for Medevac 1 to fly down from Lehigh Valley Hospital. Do you want your town to be in that situation?

Now we are blessed with three helicopters based in Montgomery County. I’ve seen as many as five helicopters for the same call, six if you count Pennstar1 coming back for another patient. Before it’s too late, you should take action.

The Ocean City Mayor and City Council should take immediate action to save the residents and visitors.

As for you “townies” stop counting out of state tags at your Acme and write your elected officials before it’s too late.

Ray Tagnon

Conshohocken (weekdays)

Ocean City (weekends)


Paint OC A Success


Our 16th Annual “Artists Paint OC” plein air event Aug. 12-16 was a big success again, despite the challenges we faced this year. Thank you to the 30 professional artists who spread out around the resort for four days and created 119 paintings of our iconic local landscapes. Turns out outdoor plein air painting is a perfect activity for social distancing.

The pelting rain and howling winds on the Boardwalk Sunday morning didn’t deter nine plein air artists from creating masterpieces during the Quick Draw competition. These artists are tough, painting under umbrellas and from their cars to compete for cash prizes.

Our gratitude also goes out to our judge, Bernard Dellario, who donated one of his original paintings for an Art League fundraising raffle. And to our sponsors of the event who provided $5,000 in cash prizes for the artists: The Peter Glenville Foundation, the Worcester County Arts Council, Worcester County Tourism, the Ocean City Development Corp., Royal Plus Electric, and private donors.

The best of the plein air paintings will be on display and available for purchase at the Ocean City Center for the Arts on 94th St. through Sept. 26.

Emily Schwab

(The writer is the chair of the Artists Paint OC event and recording secretary for the Art League of Ocean City.)


Support For Mail Voting


Voting by mail should replace voting at the polls in its entirety. The two institutions that can definitely be trusted are the County Board of Elections and the United States Postal Service.

The money saved by eliminating the need for poll workers could be used to offer free postage on the envelopes used to vote by mail. The person voting would also have more time to consider what they are voting for and would not be confined to the hours of the polling place. It would also prevent unwanted entry to schools and churches from anyone trying to harm someone.  In addition the voter would not be harassed by someone trying to place unsolicited campaign literature into their hand. The additional revenue would boost the Postal Service and perhaps keep it afloat until we as a country are able to vote online.

Voting by mail would solve the registered voter problem and guarantee safe passage of the ballots to the County Board of Elections. It might even prevent further spread of the COVID-19 Virus.

Joe Bialek

Cleveland, Ohio