Letters to the editor – February 22nd, 2017

Published 9:05 pm Tuesday, February 21, 2017


Editor, Smithfield Times

Our seniors and their families need more and better information about services available to them — transportation, financial and care options, etc. With a broad reader base across Isle of Wight County and the region, The Smithfield Times is in a unique position to fill that need.

Better information means better decisions. Better decisions mean a better life.

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The Smithfield Times has taken on a new commitment in keeping with the paper’s belief in the above paragraphs and sense of community, the monthly “Senior Solutions” column.

Senior Solutions will be for seniors, caregivers, spouses, families — anyone with a need for or interest in senior related information.

Diana McFarland, after listening to concerns of many of our senior citizens, committed herself to this effort, even though she already has a heavy workload. But, the success of “Senior Solutions” will depend, not only on the diligent efforts of Diana and The Smithfield Times. We, the community, must participation, especially the senior community.

How will “Senior Solutions” work? We will submit to Diana the issues and questions that are concerning us. Diana has made communication easy. We can write to her, email her or give her a telephone call and tell her our concerns. Then Diana will research our issues and questions. Each month, she will report the answers to our issues and concerns in the Senior Solutions column.

Personally, I intend to clip the Senior Solutions columns out of the paper each month and keep them in a notebook as a reference I may need as I continue to mature and my needs for the information grows.

The Smithfield Times has given us a voice and a resource we need. Please, read the monthly Senior Solutions and participate in this endeavor.

Thank you, Diana McFarland and John Edwards, for all of your care and hard work.

Lanelle Johnson

Days Point businesses

Editor, Smithfield Times

I believe there has been a misunderstanding regarding the concerns of the people of Days Point residential community with respect to businesses.

I am a current resident of Days Point, born and raised on the farm adjacent to the Monette property and attended the recent supervisors’ meetings where these businesses were discussed.

The concerns of the Days Point residents are not with “any” business. The current businesses in the area are office or home type retail businesses and have limited traffic flow during normal daytime hours. The concerns (as discussed at the supervisors’ meetings) are with day or nighttime, indoor or outdoor entertainment and party (weddings, etc.) businesses. These types of businesses may be active until midnight or so with a potential for 100, 200 or 300 people. This would increase the flow of traffic during these times. These types of businesses would likely have loud music and alcohol consumption, which would be disturbing during evening and sleeping hours for the residents of the area. The increased traffic and potential for alcohol consumption on narrow roads without shoulders, especially during the dark hours, could be a problem and would possibly cause a need for increased police surveillance, increasing the cost to taxpayers.

I for one, would not like to have my evening and sleep disturbed by party noises and would be concerned about confronting a drunk driver on the road to and from mouse. There are no streetlights and having people not familiar with the area or who are intoxicated tuning down the wrong lane and into private property is also a concern.

Spencer Charette

Nominations Invited

Editor, Smithfield Times

The Smithfield Ruritan and Smithfield Rotary Clubs invite individuals and organizations to submit nominations for a person to be named “Citizen of the Year” for 2016. This award is sponsored jointly by the both clubs and has been presented to deserving individuals since 1970.

Nominees should be individuals living in the Smithfield area whose activities have benefited Smithfield area residents. The nominations should include the nominee’s name, address, phone number and a complete description of the nominees’ activities and involvement that warrant this award.

Last year our 2015 Citizen of the Year was Dr. Desmond Longford, a gentleman very well deserving of the award. And his selection was due to the outpouring of support from the community. We sincerely hope that we will get continuing support from the community in order to carry on this outstanding tradition of recognizing those individuals who give unselfishly to their community.

Nominations will be accepted through March 8 and the recipient will be announced on April 11 at a joint meeting of both clubs to be held at the Smithfield Station. Please mail nominations to Citizen of the Year, P. O. Box 114, Smithfield, VA 23431 or e-mail to mswecker51@charter.net.

Larry Odom

Sentence too light

Editor, Smithfield Times

I’m absolutely mortified and disgusted at the latest story that yet another criminal gets to walk free with merely a slap on the wrist with a wet noodle.

Once again, incompetence reigns supreme as backroom lawyer deals and attorney backscratching from Georgette Phillips lets a total rapist walk free. How can anyone be satisfied by the results of this case, that a man who raped and sodomized a woman will be free in a year and then have five years probation that will not be supervised in any way?

Will he even have to register as a sex offender? I doubt it!

I really get tired of pointing out the failures and deplorable work of the prosecutor who ran on the coattails of a popular sheriff to win votes, despite the fact that she doesn’t live there and doesn’t send her kids to school there.

This is just one more example of why a prosecutor should be 100 percent independent and should be expected to represent the public, the citizen and the victim, and not be elected based on relationships with police, judges and other lawyers.

I distinctly brought up these points when Isle of Wight had the opportunity to vote for a tough, determined and well respected lawyer. Instead, the political snowball pitched by the sheriff insured that his “little buddy” would get elected. Now, failure after failure comes to light.

If Ms. Phillips can’t do her job, she needs to resign.

Dave Lyons