I.G. Burton working diligently to improve Sussex roads

November 1, 2016

I am so glad that my opponent, with her two years of residency in Delaware and Sussex County, has recognized my active career in public service for the past 30 years. Public service like mine to the county, state and charity groups is often thankless, unnoticed and unappreciated. So, I really appreciate Ms. Ledogar's recognition of my work.

Ms. Ledogar's comment, "What do we the citizens of Delaware have to show for his active career?" is a fair question. It pertains to my position on the committee on transportation, but let me first explain the responsibility of the committee. This committee is responsible for reviewing and approving the transportation budget before it is sent to the state legislators for their consideration. This committee has the responsibility to work with DelDOT to prioritize projects for the entire State of Delaware. Understanding there is always more need than money; decisions have to be made.

Safety is always the state's top priority. However, determining future transportation needs and prioritizing other projects in the queue of projects to be built is always very important. I admit that this detail is likely causing most of your eyes to glass over. But, this is the kind of work that I have been involved in for years, often fighting for Sussex County against upstate transportation needs. As a candidate for Sussex County Council, Ms. Ledogar should know about this type of process here in Delaware, but she apparently does not.

She asks, "What I have done on my 16 years on COT?" I have made sure all of Sussex County has received the safety improvements needed to keep us safe. Secondly, I have made sure that we are in line with shovel-ready projects, (the prioritization of projects in the queue). Having shovel-ready projects available is key to getting projects moving when money is available. As a result of my work on the COT, there is money now and we have shovel-ready projects here in District 3. Some of the projects in Sussex County that are fully funded and shovel-ready include:

• Route 24 intersection at Mount Joy Road
• Route 24 intersection at Bay Farm Road
• Route 24 from Love Creek to Mulberry Knoll
• Route 24 intersection at Camp Arrowhead Road
• Lewes Park and Ride
• Route 9 and 5 intersection
• 7. 7 miles of sidewalks on Route 1.

We can all agree that we are not where we want to be, but imagine where we would be without a representative from Sussex County such as myself on the COT. I urge Ms. Ledogar to become more familiar with this Delaware legislative process.

The state controlling the roads and the county controlling the zoning presents itself as a paradox. Ms. Ledogar says that she understands that "the county reaps the tax rewards of new housing but doesn't have to worry about paying for roads to accommodate these developments." This statement implies that the best situation is like New Jersey where one jurisdiction controls both the zoning and the roads. Happy days, right?

The county would have complete control. But with complete control comes complete expense. The new roads, bridges, bypasses, bike lanes, maintenance, snow removal, equipment, personnel, etc., provided by Sussex County would all come from us in the form of increased taxes. Is that what we want?

Our system has its flaws, but I would not want her system. The solution is what I have worked on for 16 years and will continue to pursue. We must work with DelDOT in partnership to get our fair share of all of the state's tax dollars to improve the Sussex County we all love. I can do this even more as member of Sussex County Council representing District 3. Let's work together.

Experience matters now more than ever.

I.G. Burton is the Republican candidate for Sussex County Council District 3.

  • Cape Gazette commentaries are written by readers whose occupations, education, community positions or demonstrated focus in particular areas offer an opportunity to expand our readership's understanding or awareness of issues of interest.

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