Voices From The Readers
Thanks For Nothing
I would like to send out a big thank you to all the local contractors and businesses that employ illegal aliens.
As a result of their diligent efforts to compete in today's market and drive wages down even farther, many skilled craftsmen like myself are barely surviving. Thanks to them, I will be probably be homeless soon and will no longer have any bills to pay. After building a reputation for doing superior quality work and having an impeccable attendance record, my efforts are being rewarded with a total lack of respect and acknowledgement for 25 years of dedicated craftsmanship. I owe a lot to these business owners for their disregard for federal immigration laws. Very soon I'll be living in my truck unless things change and with winter approaching, in a much warmer climate. Heading south will be quite an adventure, in search of a new home where contractors put quality above quantity, country before profit and ethics before competition. If there is such a place, the journey will be the best thing that ever happened to me.
So I want to say thank you for nothing, thank you for helping me destroy my credit, thank you for helping me lose almost everything I've ever worked for. When you're on the way to the bank, think of all guys like me that truly love our professions, have dedicated our lives to quality and have only asked for a fair wage for our efforts.
All I ask is that if you fly an American flag at your house, please take it down. It's a privilege and an honor to be an American, so please don't disgrace our flag as you turn your backs on us. The next time you see a homeless person, ask yourself if you helped put them there. Thanks to you, this will most likely be the last generation of true American quality craftsmen. Soon, I'll have nothing else to lose, so thank you for that too.
Lower City Staff Wages
So City Council wants to trim the low-hanging fruit from the budget in lieu of the $5 million in revenue loss expected for 2009 due lowered real estate assessments?
I commend the council for their effort, however let's talk about the 800-pound gorilla in the room that up until now, no one wants to acknowledge; how about rolling back the 15-25-percent salary increases that OC municipal employees and the police enjoyed over the past few years? Very few people that I work with got even a fraction of those amounts of salary increases over the past several years.
By permitting these increases to our budget during the years of 80-percent assessment growth, we now have a structural deficit that will be very hard to manage in the coming years without huge tax increases, which as most folks understand would be suicide to our revenue base.
Let's see who has the guts in City Council to bring up this proposal.
OC Needs New Ad Agency
Ocean City needs a new ad agency. The More Fun Here ad campaign was boring. The world is ending campaign was even worse. We need an ad agency that thinks out of the box and comes up with an exciting ad campaign for the summer of 2009. In this economy, we need to excite the tourist to come to Ocean City with special events and concerts. We need to get the surfing statue out of the warehouse and put it on the beach and have a surfing festival to dedicate the statue.
You need to give people a reason to come back to Ocean City instead of going to a cheaper beach resort. Our advertising agency's contract is up at the end of this fiscal year. We are paying this ad agency $15,000 a month to promote Ocean City. If we want anything extra like TV commercials, website, TV, print or radio ads, that is all extra. They charged the city $200,000 to make our television ads. They were upset when their $170,000 website upgrade design did not sail through the work session I attended last week. They wanted to know why the City Council wanted to bid out the website upgrade but did not bid the $200,000 we paid to have TV ads made. The mayor said the $200,000 was in the budget, but the $170,000 for website upgrade was not.
What are we getting for $15,000 a month from our ad agency? We need to send out bid forms to the top advertising agencies in the country. Las Vegas' ad agency has won numerous awards for its campaign. Let's send them a letter. Let's look at the ad agencies that win the Super Bowl ad contest every year and hire a separate company to do our TV ads. You can go on the Internet and search for ad agencies that have won awards.
Our agency I think tried to pull a fast one and say you wanted a new upgrade website, that's going to cost $170,000. Give me a break. We do not want you to design a website from scratch. We want you to design a website like Wyoming's site or Montreal's site with streaming video. You contact the company that did these sites and you ask them to do one just like Wyoming for Ocean City. They already have the program done for the website. They just take all the Wyoming information off and plug in Ocean City information. But Mary Knight says it's not that easy. She was told by several cities she could not get a website built for under $250,000 because we are not building a website from scratch. The mayor backed up Knight saying the town's ad agency should do everything. He did not want to piecemeal it out. This $170,000 is only 3.5 percent of our advertising budget, the mayor said.
Ocean City needs a site with streaming video and a site that can be updated. Seacrets updates its website all the time with streaming videos and flashing photos. I'm sure they did not pay $170,000 for it. Several Ocean City website companies said they would like to design a new site for Ocean City. Let all these people bring Ocean City some new ideas and a new design.
George Leukel III
I would like to take this opportunity to publicly acknowledge and thank those members of the Worcester County Bar Association who contributed funds in support of the Bar's Annual Thanksgiving Charity.
Through their generosity, we were able to provide a turkey and all of the trimmings to 280 less fortunate families here in Worcester County. I also would like to thank school officials at Pocomoke Elementary, Snow Hill Elementary, Buckingham Elementary and Showell Elementary as well as Worcester Count GOLD for helping identify those in need and coordinating delivery of our food items.
Finally, Dave Smith, Lenny French and the staff at Superfresh on 94th Street are to be congratulated for their tireless effort and generosity. Without them, this exercise in giving would be impossible.
David C. Gaskill
(The writer is the chairman of the Bar's Committee on Charitable Endeavors.)
A Fruitful Summit
The Art League of Ocean City (ALOC) recently held an Art Summit that brought together representatives of every segment of the Ocean City population including government, residential communities, business organizations, service groups, the press, etc.
The purpose of the summit was to investigate how the ALOC can best serve the needs of our community. How the ALOC can be recognized as the 'added value' it is to residents and visitors alike. The strengths of the visual art scene in our community as well as the opportunities believed to be the most important contributing factors to the overall quality of life in the region were discussed.
The ALOC has been operating in Ocean City since the 1960s. Since the 1980s it has been exhibiting fine arts and holding classes, workshops, lectures, etc. It seeks to promote the scope, knowledge and awareness of the arts.
The Arts Consulting Group facilitated the meeting. They are currently compiling the information gathered that day. The material will be helpful in planning the future of the visual arts in Ocean City.
We would like to thank all who took time out of busy schedules to work with us. Together we can continue to enhance the visual arts impact in our community and help keep Ocean City the exciting destination it is.
Art League of Ocean City
Obama No Different
With the election of the new president I was hoping it would be months before I would have to voice an opinion on how he was doing. Well it didn't last that long.
The new president elect ran on the theme "there needs to be a change" with the promise that he would shake up Washington and stop doing things as they have been done for so long.
This was the main reason numerous people voted for him. People are sick and tired of things as usual, the old-fashioned Washington politics. We voted with the hope of new effective leadership (even though the vice president had been part of Washington for over 35 years).We voted hoping he would throw out all the old style politicians and replace them.
Well what have we gotten so far?? Every appointment that has been made or is about to be made to the new administration has been some old time political hack from the previous Clinton and Carter administration. Old retreads who have been part of Washington for years and years. People who will bring us the same worn out, dragged on, lame politics from as far back as 20 years ago.
My question is: why? Aren't there any new faces and voices out there qualified to take on the task. Aren't there people in this country willing and able to take leadership roles who have not been tainted already by old time Washington politics?
Couldn't there have been enough new people to avoid what is happening or is this new elected president the same as any other politician?
Promise them everything to get elected then do whatever you want when the election is over.
The Greene Turtle Girls Lacrosse Club would like to thank the following people and businesses for their generous contributions to our 3rd Annual Bull & Oyster Roast fundraiser.
We continue to be overwhelmed by your generosity and support of our girls lacrosse program. Adam Showell & Ann Mariner, Castle in the Sand, The Blue Ox, The Hobbit, Harborside, Macky's, Marlin Moone Grille, Mancini's, Seacrets, Sunset Grille, Shawn Harmon & Fishtales, K-Coast, Jolly Rogers, Sunsations, the Francis Scott Key Hotel, Robin Walter Salon, Steve and Patty Falck & TaDa, Kevin & Linda Smith & O.C. Parasailing, La-Contessa, Jane's Jewels, Flowers by Alison, Ocean City Golf & Yacht Club, Tommy Dickerson, the Greene Turtle West, Keith Neff, Jenton Esworthy, Riddle Farm, Planet Maze, Jacque & Chris Remmell, Chris Butler & Wockenfuss Candies, & Bryan LeCompte. We would also like to thank all of our 'GTLax' parents who contributed to make this year's team baskets amazing. And to everyone who came out for a great day of fun, we could not do this without you.
Tommy D. and The Silent Auction Committee
The Worcester County Veterans Memorial at Ocean Pines Foundation wishes to thank Anna Foultz, Founder and President of Star Charities, and her committee for their generous donation to the Veterans Memorial Foundation. Star Charities recently held two fundraisers, both benefiting the foundation. The foundation extends a heartfelt "thank you" to each of the hard working committee members who made these events successful. All monies raised through fund raising efforts are used for the maintenance of the memorial and the educational outreach programs extended to fifth grade students in our county.
(The writer is the secretary of the Worcester County Veterans Memorial Foundation.)