Letters to The Editor 01-29-20

Published 8:21 pm Tuesday, January 28, 2020


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Value support, kindness

Editor, Smithfield Times;

We live in a truly loving community and it warms my heart. On Dec. 17, 2019, Bubba-N-Franks and Hardees Bingo Seniors held our annual Christmas Party.  As always, our local businesses showed their outstanding support of our seniors. Bubba-N-Frank’s Smokehouse BBQ, thank you for allowing us to take over your restaurant for a couple of hours.  Your commitment to our group, year round, is truly appreciated. Smithfield Hardee’s thank you for opening up to us each week as well. Christmas gifts were provided to us by so many of our community businesses we were truly blessed.  We wish to acknowledge every one of these businesses and tell you how much we value your support and kindness.  In no particular order, we thank the following:  The Oaks Veterinary Clinic, Home Sweet Home Care Inc., Hardees of Smithfield, Farmer’s Table Restaurant, Smithfield Food Lion, Carrollton Food Lion, Hair Worx, Sal’s Pizza, Ray’s Import Auto Repair, Office Express Plus, Tammy’s Haircuts Etc., O’Reilly’s Auto Parts, Cost Cutters Hair Salon of Carrollton, Major League Builders, Carrollton Rite Aid, The Smithfield Times, Seaborne Barbershop, Smithfield Inn, Stallings & Associates CPA, Bayport Credit Union, Travis Auto Repair, Shear Success Hair Salon, Old Dominion Guns, Animal Clinic of Eagle Harbor, Dashing Dogs. Carrollton Car Wash, All About You Salon, G&S Apiaries, Edward Jones of Carrollton, Edward Jones of Smithfield, Findley’s Country Store, Smithfield Flag Shop, Papa Johns Pizza, Southern States Smithfield, Carrollton Exxon, Cofer Auto, Smithfield Fast Lube, Cockeyed Rooster and Smithfield Ice Cream Parlor. 

Lisa Bright



Said it well

Editor, Smithfield Times

I would like to thank Albert Burckard for his letter to the editor in The Smithfield Times concerning “freedom from fear.” You said it so well! If only the anti-gun politicians understood that but of course, it isn’t about guns; it is about control.

George Mason said many years ago, “To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.”

Helen Eggleston



A bridge too much

Editor, Smithfield Times;

Conservationist have a continuing concern with the South Harbor development now approved by the Board of Supervisors, i.e. the proposed bridge over the ravine behind the Carrollton Baptist Church.  Richard Rudnecki said it was necessary for emergency access.  Blatantly untrue!  Channel Way is obviously the proper emergency access for Carrollton Fire/ Rescue responding to South Harbor. 

If the proposed bridge is built, it will destroy for birds much upper marsh nesting ground.  Climatologists say in 30 years sea level will rise 0.6 feet and ground level will sink 1.1 feet.  Tides will be 1.7 feet higher than today.  Think of the South Harbor marsh as being both a lower marsh and an upper marsh, where most nesting will be.  The higher future tides will destroy the lower marsh and change much of the present higher marsh to lower marsh.  `Most of the upper marsh, especially with the proposed bridge, will cease to exist.  Nesting ground for tens of thousands of birds will be gone, once gone is gone forever. 

Please do not build the bridge.  It will save East- West money, is unnecessary, and will leave a little corner of the world for our migratory birds that are in serious crisis.

Thomas Finderson



Wool removed from eyes

Editor, Smithfield Times;

The Isle of Wight County School Board meeting on 15th saw a new leaf turned with the new chair, a professional who’s not going to have the “wool pulled over her eyes” by the superintendent. Questions raised and comments made reflect this “new” leader’s approach to important subjects.

An issue I raised has to do with policy/regulation adherence by all employees of IWCS, including the Board’s superintendent.  IWCS is presently undergoing an audit by the Mares accounting firm.  Info was given the chair to give the Mare’s auditors to assist them in zeroing in on items to look closely at of possible violations. Enumerated here, they are:

 #1-Did the superintendent violate policy DJA-revised 12-10-15, on awarding contracts to Honeywell International and Comfort Systems, each over $100,000 before Board approval? 

#2-In the 2019 IWCS budget year, did the superintendent violate policy DJA by authorizing payments over $100,000 before Board approval?

#3- Did the superintendent, before Board approval, authorize payments of over $100,000 to Delta Graphics in Aug 2018, and Amtek Company twice, one in Sept 2018 and other in Oct 2018?

#4- Did the superintendent violate policies DJA, DJ, DJ-R, DJA-E1 and DJAE-2 by approving the now infamous Nightlocks for $64,658.40 which exceeded the small purchasing procedures that require three quotes, that did not occur, there being no record in evidence, I understand?

Is IWCS facing a similar situation to what, I understand, audits found in Mecklenburg wherein the superintendent exceeded procurement limits?  The new IWCS Board chair, as a person of integrity, wanting adherence to pertinent policy/regulation by all employees, giving her an envelope containing above referenced policies/regulations and exhibits, for her to give Mares’ auditors enabling their timely audit, I think will take place expeditiously. 

Nothing less is acceptable to and for all IWCS employees.  Some might, ask why involve Mares auditors?  With the “possibility” of a majority of superintendent cronies on the Board, citizens’ tax dollars being wasted, action’s needed to stop it … that’s why. 

Herb De Groft



Misinformed use of speech

Editor, Smithfield Times;

I believe that informed citizenship means supporting the Constitution.  The Second Amendment is a part of the Bill of Rights.  The Bill of Rights gives citizens freedom of speech.  They can protest if they are concerned about anything they choose.  However, it is up to the courts to determine whether laws passed or laws applied are constitutional or not. It is not up to the passions of public opinion.  The fact that we still have our rights protected shows the wisdom of our Founders. 

So it was with great dismay that I read last week a letter expressing a misinformed attempt to use President Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech to promote deregulation of guns. The four freedoms that Roosevelt spoke of are referred to as a Second Bill of Rights.  They include freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom from want and freedom from fear.  The speech was given before the United States entered World War II and addressed the responsibilities governments have to all people.  It would inspire the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which I personally believe is one of the highest aspirations of mankind.

The speech did not mention guns at all. To suggest that Roosevelt’s speech should be used to ban sensible gun safety laws is uninformed at best and misleading at worst. To live in a society ruled by either a government that is unconstitutional or by the passions of public opinion is not what we want.  Let the courts hold both accountable.  To do less is irresponsible and dangerous.

Jerry Tenney



Call Historical Society

Editor, Smithfield Times;

Many of us in the local community were saddened to read of the deliberate destruction by fire of the prominent ca. 1836 home along Route 620.

This well-known “Charles Chapman House,” as it was named by Helen Haverty King in her 1983 survey of “old houses” in our county, was architecturally significant in its use of “clerestory” features, but the occupants had also probably witnessed history from its front windows. Captain Nathaniel Sturdivant rode by on Feb. 1, 1864 leading his band of infantry, cavalry and artillery into Smithfield to confront the “…vile Yankee invaders” as it was phrased at that time. His victory over the federal landing force remains the most dramatic event the town has ever seen. What a shame that such a stately and silent witness to such events in our county is gone forever.

And what of historic documents, family archives, letters and photographs that may have been hidden away in the building and are now destroyed?

The Isle of White County Historical Society appeals to all owners of these unique and historic structures to consider allowing the Society to conduct a search for such things before these buildings and their contents are lost. We have been successful in the past in recovering historic documents from structures slated for demolition that neither the owner nor the recent occupants knew existed. Previous occupants may have secreted personal items over the preceding centuries in crawl spaces, attics, under staircases and many other places that the current occupants and owners are unaware of.

This is a request to all current “stewards” of historic properties, that may even be currently unoccupied, to invite members of your local Historical Society to have the chance to recover documents and other items. These may be of inestimable value not only to the families of previous owners but also to the Isle of Wight County Museum, the Library and Archives of Virginia and to the people in our county who value its 400-year-old history. 

Albert Burckard



Spend money on other things

Editor, Smithfield Times;   My name is Noah Gearey and I have an issue to discuss.  I think that we should stop building things like the bike path to Nike Park. We should instead spend that money on things like the school system or law enforcement. The path is taking forever and is costing millions. 

Noah Gearey, age 13