As previously announced, Tidelines is introducing a new feature, Letters to the Editor. This is our first set of letters. You can generally expect to see this feature on a weekly basis, probably in the Friday edition of Tidelines.
We look forward to hearing from you.
For Safety Use Crosswalks
There are two crosswalks between the traffic circle and the Seabrook gate. They are well marked with signs. Motorists should honor these and allow bikers and walkers to cross safely. Several times when walking our dogs in one of these designated crosswalks, we have been frightened by motorists driving aggressively and disregarding the signs. Tragedy and liability can be avoided if motorists act responsibly.
Gail Azain, Seabrook Island
The Dreary Economy and Creek Watch Dreary Gray Villas
In an editorial, Mortimer Zuckerman asked who would get the dreary economy going (WSJ, 8/20/2015). The past year remains grim for millions in spite of trillions in quantitative easing and near-zero interest rates. The housing recovery is short of where it could be, consumer spending is shaky, and the economy is still sending mixed signals.
Therefore, it is not surprising that the selling price of our (gray) villas over the past 32 years peaked in 2006 and then decreased. Some have attributed this decrease in value to the dreary gray paint of our villas. Our community is exploring changing the color, but all choices may represent much higher costs.
The cost of this and other projects may have a disparate impact on owners who are on ever decreasing fixed incomes, who are economically fragile, and who seemingly have no advocate in the decision making on Seabrook Island. Financial fragility can be defined as the inability to cover a $2,000 unexpected expense in the next month (e.g., a major home repair or a large medical copayment). Signs of economic fragility may include frequent late payments, liens placed on villas, and perhaps bankruptcy.
The financial fragility of our owners is unclear as is their desire to spend larger sums of money on specific beautification projects. Planners need to be sensitive to this issue. Many civil, collegial conversations about finances need to occur as we move forward with projects on the Island.
Ryan Cook, Seabrook Island
Submitted by: Tidelines Writers