Cooper has not taken bull by the horns

August 1, 2014

I'm ready for a new mayor.

It's time to loosen the controls, open the process so other commissioners can participate more fully. Currently, every decision seems to be driven by the cost; there is a lack of interest in looking past the next year or so concerning financial planning. The same is true for land management; residential areas are becoming ever more commercial in character. Everyone is always grousing about the lack of communication, but it never gets better.

When he said he would not run for a second term, Commissioner Mark Hunker seemed to be reflecting a frustration about his inability to carry out his functions effectively. While Commissioner Hunker did not link his frustrations to the mayor, I believe the environment that he spoke of - at least to some extent - is created by the mayor.

We're seemingly obsessed with maintaing the character of the community. Yet, when you look around, neighborhoods have ever larger structures that are built for the main purpose of turning a profit - a realtor selling a house on my street touts it as a rental opportunity for a seven-bedroom, seven-bath, w/pool, sleeps 18! His idea is not original; there's already just such a new property on my street. Understand, I'm not blaming investors; they're doing their thing. I'm blaming failed leadership over many years for not being farsighted enough or hindering those other commissioners who do have the foresight.

As to communications, there are so many facets that are underdeveloped - correspondence, website, email notices. Plans for emergencies have been woefully underdeveloped for years. I was impressed by the activation of the new CodeRED emergency alert system; however, I suspect credit there should go to our new city manager.

Wastewater disposal and City Hall are issues du jour. Yes, they are significant and, yes, they have far-reaching implications. I expressed my position years ago on these issues. I don't believe we should be polluting our ocean and I know first hand how deplorable conditions are for our police and other city workers. And, that's my point: these issues and others are representative of the passive, kick-the-can-down-the-road governing style of the current mayor. The wastewater issue remained dormant for some years before it was considered. A major study of City Hall in 2007 was completely terminated, largely because he didn't favor it. Why didn't he seek workable alternatives at that time? Arguments today about costs as well as the general attitude about spending money somehow get lost when you consider the fact that addressing these problems head on in a timely manner would have obviated the financial controversy.

I'm voting for Tom McGlone!

Hoyte Decker
Rehoboth Beach


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