Ping will be missed

on O.C. City Council

What effect do you think Scott Ping's decision to leave City Council in Ocean City will have on the city's future? Just for a minute, put aside whatever opinion you may have of him or whether you disagreed with stands he took.

If you have followed City Council during the past eight years, you have noticed that some members are willing to take risks for what they believe is for the good of the city and taxpayers and others are afraid to be unpopular. Like them or hate them, Pete Guinosso, Keith Hartzell and Ping have taken risks.

Ping beat me in my run for a council seat in 2010. I like to think I would have been bold enough to take a stand for the taxpayers that may have been unpopular with a union. But the truth is, that would have been no great test of courage on my part. I do not own a business in Ocean City that could be boycotted. Scott does. The phrase "man up" has become a cliche, but Ping actually did.

He was also willing to engage in an argument without getting offended. We've shared a few differences of opinion over the years in his store. I have to say, it's been a pleasure. So many people who see themselves as "tough" are really just "touchy."

There are three new faces running for the at-large council seats: Eric Sauder, Pete Madden and Mike Hyson. The question each of us will answer before the election is which of these individuals will be able to replace Ping? As annoying as political campaigns are, this really is our first opportunity to get to know these men. Let's perform our citizens' duty: Pay attention during the forums and speeches, and vote. I just regret that Ping will not be among the choices.


Ocean City

How do 5-year-olds

know about sex?

Regarding the March 17 story, "Teacher's supporters go to public":

In defense of the suspended Mullica Township teacher accused of "improperly supervising children," I must ask, who is kidding whom?

A 5-year-old boy and girl were in the classroom bathroom together and each said the other had wanted to have sex. Are you kidding me?

When I was 5 years old, I never heard of the word. At 10, I didn't know what it meant, and at 15 I did not understand it. How did these children know about sex?

It sounds as if someone has it in for the teacher. It sounds like a witch hunt. I suppose if the children were in the bathroom playing marbles this would not have happened.

Get the teacher back to work. She has a good record and should not be crucified by close-minded people.


Egg Harbor City

Unions, corporations

should be partners

Regarding Keving Post's March 16 Bottom Lines column, "N.J. union decline slowly helping its competitiveness":

I take issue with the idea that union declines help business competitiveness. In my view, the purpose and practice of unions is to improve businesses by partnering with employers to give employees a living wage, decent benefits and a voice in their enterprises.

Competitiveness is important. Just as important is worker justice. I believe the major reason for union declines is the corporate sector not living up to its partnership opportunities, resulting in the capitalistic excesses from which our state, our nation and our workers have suffered and are suffering now. Glorying in and hastening union declines make for a true race to the bottom.


Egg Harbor Township

Don't replace

Hamilton custodians

Having been born in Hamilton Township, and having lived there for most of my life before relocating to Florida in 2010, I have tried to keep current with what's going on by looking at the local newspapers.

I was shocked when I read of the township Board of Education's proposed budget cuts, including a plan to eliminate 30 custodian jobs.

This is a bad move. People have worked for years at these schools, and now, with a blink of an eye, the board wants to save a few dollars and do away with their jobs by outsourcing - and with a company that is not even local.

Over the years, I have worked for companies that did the same thing - got rid of their own custodial staff and brought in outside janitorial services. Take it from me, you will not be happy, nor will you get the dedication of long-time employees.

These outside companies will promise you the world, charge you a large monthly fee and send in their own employees, who - no offense - will do as little as possible because they will be paid as little as possible.

It is not fair to do away with dedicated employees who have been with the district for years and given their hearts and souls. There are other ways to cut the budget.


Bradenton, Fla.

Coastal areas need

storm recovery fund

As a business owner in Brigantine, I believe we need a federal solution that is better than the Federal Emergency Management Agency for disaster relief and recovery.

FEMA is simply not enough. Storms are getting bigger, more destructive and more frequent. And it's happening all over the country.

We need to think about preparing for the next storm before it hits. A group called US Strong has recommendations for a federal disaster-relief program that is dedicated to securing funding for storm preparedness. If we pay a little up front, we will have less to worry about when we need funding for recovery.

I hope that U.S. Rep. Frank LoBiondo, R-2nd, will take a look at this plan and support it. We need to be ready before the next storm hits. Related actions could include providing greater drainage via zero percent impervious surfaces and elevating all houses higher than the minimum base flood elevation.


Loza Architecture