Guest Post From John Sandy

Jeff_Christopher,_official_photo_0

Has all of Christopher’s constitutional posturing just been a smoke screen to hide the abysmal job he has done as sheriff? By reviewing the Sussex County budgets (https://www.sussexcountyde.gov/county-budget) we can see that in Fiscal Year 2012 (FY12) the Sheriff’s office generated $4,686,024 of revenue for Sussex County. (FY14 Budget, page 4 in the link) In FY12 the Sheriff’s office serviced Superior Court, Court of Chancery, Court of Common Pleas, and Family Court. FY12 is also the last year that the Sheriff’s office serviced Family Court.

In early FY13 the State of Delaware, Executive Department, Office of Management  and Budget sought bids for serving process for the Sussex County Family Court and Division of Child Support Enforcement. On 9/17/2012, Christopher submitted a two paragraph letter simply stating that his bid was 10% more than the last contract (a contract that was awarded the Sheriff’s office under the previous Sheriff, Eric Swanson).  Christopher’s letter “bid” went on to say that if the proper bid format wasn’t complete, to please contact his office and teach them the proper procedure. Note that Swanson got it right and the invitation to submit the bid by the State clearly stated the correct format for the proposal.

  christopher bid

    On November 8, 2012 the State responded and rejected the bid without even considering it because it didn’t remotely comply with the State’s Request for Proposal procedure that were specifically stated in the instructions for submitting a proposal.  Christopher so thoroughly botched the application that, in effect, the State consigned his meager effort to “the circular file”. Christopher’s lack of attention to one of the most basic duties of his job had tremendous financial repercussions. Whereas, in FY12 the Sheriff’s office generated $4,686,024; in FY13, after losing the Family Court contract, the Sherriff’s office revenue declined to $2,471,611 (see FY15 budget page 4 at the link above). The actual revenues from FY14 and the present FY15 will not be available until FY16 and Fy17 respectively; however Christopher himself has submitted his own revenue forecasts for those years as part of the budgetary process. (FY15, page 4 in the link) For Fy14 the Sheriff projected his own revenues at $2,010,000; and for FY15 he projected revenues of $2,150,000.

 State Bid  state bid 2 state bid 3

Taking the last year with a Family Court contract, FY12, as a baseline  we can see that in FY13 the loss of the Family Court contract cost the County $2,214,413 in lost revenue. Using Christopher’s own revenue projection, in FY14 the loss of the Family Court contract cost the county $2,676,024. in lost revenue. Again, using Christopher’s own revenue projection for FY15, the loss of the Family Court contract cost the County $2,536,024 in lost revenue. So far, this monumental screw up cost the taxpayers of Sussex County $7,426,461.

 In another vein, Christopher tells people, and publishes on his Facebook page, that his law suit against Sussex County cost the County nothing in legal fees; apparently asserting that the funds had already been expended in the form of a nonrefundable retainer. That is, that the lawyers for the County would be paid the same amount regardless of whether he sued or not. That is either a deliberate misrepresentation or an acknowledgement that he has absolutely no idea of how the legal system or the County operates. In reality the County does not pay a retainer. The County contracts with four different law firms for legal services. Each firm is responsible for providing legal services in different areas of the law. As part of the budget process each firm notifies County Council of its hourly rate that year and estimates, based on previous experience, the number of hours they anticipate providing. This allows the County to budget for legal expenses. Thus, as the work is performed on a particular matter the firms invoice the County and are paid. There were two firms that rendered legal services to the County in the matter of Christopher vs. Sussex County.  In all the attorney fees paid came to $77,243.49.

    attorney fees

When you add it all up, lost revenue and attorney fees combined, it has cost us more than $7.5 million for Jeff Christopher to be our sheriff. We deserve better and can’t afford four more years of his ineptitude.

63 Comments on "Guest Post From John Sandy"

  1. Frank Knotts says:

    I would like to thank John Sandy for taking the time to research this article, great job John.

  2. saltyindependent says:

    Uh oh. We got some facts being presented…..poor guy doesn’t realize that facts have nothing to do with the constitution and tyranny.

  3. Sanity Check says:

    Where are the files/attachments he is referencing?

    Although, truthfully, will facts dissuade this group? Facts haven’t affected their twisted logic thus far.

  4. Frank Knotts says:

    That was an editor’s mistake, I will attempt to get them into the post or comments ASAP. My fault.

  5. Say it ain't so says:

    So the sheriff has done an awful job of running the office, that’s not important. What’s important is he can spend thousands of dollars on a court case and then say he never meant to accept the court’s opinion. This guy is a miracle worker, what a politician, screw the voters and get them to re-elect you. Not since Joe Biden have we had this kind of performance. I wonder how much of a property tax cut that $7 million would have gotten the average property tax payer? Never knew what “constitutional” really meant before.

  6. Frank Knotts says:

    If you return to the original post you will see that the original documents quoted have been added, I believe that if you click on them they will enlarge. Sorry for the delay.

  7. Dave says:

    Thanks to John for the documentation that demonstrates what most of us knew, that law firms are paid for services and Christopher’s lawsuits costs the tax payers money. I was not aware that Christopher had responded to an RFP (a pretty basic one at that) in such a manner. It makes one wonder if he actually read the RFP and if so, whether he had the comprehension necessary to adequately respond. It’s also worthy to note that the 10% increase over the previous year appears to be just a number that was pulled out of thin air (or elsewhere) with no quantifiable basis.

    I expect that we will see how many whack jobs we have in this county come election day. My guess is that it’s probably about 500 or so. I’m interested to see if my guess is close.

  8. fightingbluehen says:

    Ted Nudgent was on the radio just yesterday saying that sheriff Christpher will protect our Second Amendment rights. I think he may have a touch of the cat scratch fever or maybe he did the wango tango one too many times.
    Oh, what the hell, as long as the transplant retirees are entertained. What’s a few million bucks?

  9. Hypocrazy Watch says:

    Now that we know lame duck, former Sheriff Jeff Christopher is a liar who lost the County over $7.5 million in revenue, can John Rielly PLEASE put on his “Man Pants” and rid the SCGOP leadership of Christopher’s treacherous TRAITOR supporters?

  10. Old Sussex County Native says:

    Thank you, Mr. Sandy for this expose. I have heard rumors much more may be coming, but who am I to say. But, now that you have opened the gate…

    I have decided now to end any comments on the topic of the Sheriff, and adopt the “popcorn time” theme. Put on the popcorn, sit back and watch the show. I certainly will not be “writing in” either.

  11. itgetsgooder says:

    I wonder if Doug Beatty will still profess his love!

  12. saltyindependent says:

    don’t you people realize it’s unconstitutional to talk about facts and numbers and stuff. math is for tyrants.

  13. Anon says:

    The constitution didn’t tell him to correctly fill out the RFP duh. That is why he purposely lost the contract.

  14. Geezer says:

    Nicely done. Citizen journalism at its finest.

  15. Frank Knotts says:

    Is it any wonder that Christopher couldn’t file a proper bid in 2012? Do a search of Jeff Christopher and look at the things that show up in 2012. In January he had traveled to Las Vegas to attend “SHERIFF” Mack’s dog and pony show, bet there were some great book sales there.
    In April he is doing phone in interviews with Mack.
    2012 was also the year that Beau Biden released the AG stamen about the office of the sheriff, it is also the year that Christopher filed his suit against Sussex County Council, it is also the year that he was defending his deputy Torres over fraud concerning overtime charges. In fact the weekend prior to the public hearing over Torres, Christopher had a speaking engagement in Maryland on the issue of constitutional sheriffs.
    Seems that he was spending a lot of time on that issue, and very little on the running of the office he holds in such high regard.

  16. Gerald says:

    Being you think you know so much Frank, what was the over time for that Deputy Torres was paid?

  17. JS says:

    Gerald, from the day he was hired in Aug. 2011 until the day he was fired, Torres billed the county in excess of $6000 in overtime. The next highest overtime bill was for the Chief Deputy, Dennis Lineweaver, who was paid $1400 for overtime. Because one lie/theft was enough to fire Torres, the County made the tactical decision to limit the allegation to $784.89 in fraudulent overtime pay.

  18. Frank Knotts says:

    Thank you JS, and great post.

  19. Gerald says:

    Your spouting numbers and I can read that. Thats not my question. My question was what was the overtime for? Do you know? People get overtime during the course of their employment. What was the overtime for? Again do you know? Its easy to research it, because I did! Now instead of spinning the tale, reveal the truth!

  20. Frank Knotts says:

    Gerald, if you have as you claim, researched it and are not just regurgitating Christopher’s cover story, then you know that it was proven by the use of GPS devises on the county vehicle that deputy Torres was responsible for, that hours that he claimed as overtime, the vehicle was parked at his home. That too is public record.

  21. JS says:

    The overtime was charged for work that was not performed. For example, Torres submitted a log for one day showing that he left home at 7:15 am, it then went on to document all the addresses he went to, how many times he went back, the purpose for the trip etc. He recorded the time that he allegedly did all that. The problem was that his car never left his driveway that day until 10:15am. The testimony, from the Sheriff’s office was that, while it was not 100% the GPS was reliable and accurate.Theft, lies and/or a combination of both will get you fired anywhere.

  22. Gerald says:

    GPS is not totally accurate. Any law enforcement agency in the country will tell you that especially when it tries to pin point a location of victim of crime as well as a dispatch center exact location of its patrol units. It can give you an probable area but it is routinely off its mark due to satellite movements in space. GPS is not a definite location it just gives you an idea of where the unit was when the satellite got the signal. Cell phone 911 GPS is an example of giving a area but not the precise spot where a person can be located. Do your research on GPS.

  23. JS says:

    Mr. Torres was not tracked through his cell phone. The county vehicles are GPS equipped so that they can be tracked. Most police agencies now equip their vehicles with the same technology so that the officer (or at least his vehicle) can be found in an emergency. The State has invested thousands of dollars in GPS tracking “bracelets” that some sex offenders have been required to wear as a term of probation when released from prison.The courts have accepted the technology as accurate enough that it is a violation of the 4th amendment to place a tracking device on a suspects car without a search warrant. These devices may only be accurate to a few feet or a few yards, but that is certainly accurate enough to know whether a vehicle is stationary for 3 hours. Gerald, I’ve been in situations that my safety has depended on GPS. I’ve done my homework,

  24. Gerald says:

    I know that they have GPS on their vehicles. I was using cell phones as an example. I know that our Delaware police agencies use GPS on their vehicles that are linked into Delaware dispatch communications systems as well as I know how much money was invested and who the company is installed it. I am all to familiar with the ankle bracelets on sex offenders and other offenders who have them for various reasons as in violation of probation. And I know for a fact what the distance is and how long that distance will remain as long as the satellites are moving, positioned or stationary.

  25. Frank Knotts says:

    So Gerald’s last comment confirms JS’ last comment.
    Gerald, we are not talking about being off by a mile, we are talking about whether or not a vehicle had even moved.
    And your demi-god Christopher attempted to make the same lame claim, and the GPS on Torres’ car was tested and found to be accurate.
    So as I said in a previous comment,
    “Is it any wonder that Christopher couldn’t file a proper bid in 2012? Do a search of Jeff Christopher and look at the things that show up in 2012. In January he had traveled to Las Vegas to attend “SHERIFF” Mack’s dog and pony show, bet there were some great book sales there.
    In April he is doing phone in interviews with Mack.
    2012 was also the year that Beau Biden released the AG stamen about the office of the sheriff, it is also the year that Christopher filed his suit against Sussex County Council, it is also the year that he was defending his deputy Torres over fraud concerning overtime charges. In fact the weekend prior to the public hearing over Torres, Christopher had a speaking engagement in Maryland on the issue of constitutional sheriffs.
    Seems that he was spending a lot of time on that issue, and very little on the running of the office he holds in such high regard.”

  26. Gerald says:

    Elected politicians travel the state and country on speaking engagements all the time. What’s new about that? You going to say Christopher can’t do speaking engagements but other elected officials such Ruth Briggs King can go to China on our dime is perfectly OK? What hypocrisy!
    As far as the GPS is concerned, I suggest you contact the states contract holder Motoralo and have them send you a 900mhz pamphlet on their product.

  27. Hypocrazy Watch says:

    The Sheriff traveled to promote his lawsuit against the State of Delaware while Briggs King traveled to Taiwan to promote Delaware. I wouldn’t expect lame duck, soon to be former Sheriff Christopher’s supporters to understand the distinction.

  28. Hypocrazy Watch says:

    BTW, RBK didn’t travel to Taiwan “on our dime,” you lying sack of nutjob.

  29. Frank Knotts says:

    I’m sorry Gerald, do you have proof that RBK fouled up a bid that cost tax payers millions of dollars?
    And again, the GPS on Torres’s car was tested and found to be accurate. Hence the reason for his firing.

  30. Gerald says:

    Who’s dime did she use? Not her own on state business! She went with a couple of other legislators. So she did use OUR dime! Sheriff Jeff Christopher has numerous speaking engagements in and out of state on the Constitution without mentioning the law suit. But you wouldn’t know that because you haven’t asked him have you? The only lying going on here is the lying ass participants on this gross site.

    Frank so you know but then it doesn’t matter what know, Sheriff Christopher didn’t mess up the bid, County Council never submitted it. I am sure the GPS unit was working as far as the County Council’s knowledge of turning on and turning it off.

  31. Anon says:

    Gerald– there is a letter from the sheriff where he screwed up the bid. He signed it he just did it wrong.

    And by you defending Torres you lose any credibility with most Sussex Countians. Torres is a liar who stole from the taxpayers by forging his overtime sheets. Before that he was arrested for pulling a gun on a repot man who came to take a vehicle he was late on the payments for. Even if Christopher had won his court case and the sheriffs office was given arrest powers Torres wouldn’t have been able to since he was de-certified by the state of delaware. Meaning he can no longer work in a law enforcement.

    Yet another lie Christopher used to tell when Torres was still employed when he would say all of his deputies were certified officers.

  32. Frank Knotts says:

    Gerald, did you read the post? There is a copy of the so called bid, go back and look at it.
    The GPS was tested, and was found to be working. You are sad, your arguments are childish at best, please remove your head from your arse.
    Do you burn candles to your demi-god Christopher. or simply worship at his feet?

  33. Armand Carreau says:

    Gentlemen,
    I have visited Delaware Right a few times, and have been impressed by the opinions expressed, and by the tireless research done by a few writers. John Sandy’s Oct. 16th guest post on the Sheriff, caught my attention. I disagree with him, but John makes some valid points; however his fervor to nail the Sheriff is quite intense. Frank seems a fair moderator, allowing both sides to have their say, and I was previously impressed by Frank’s defense of the death penalty a few months back, which I happen to agree with. The mission statement about being able to disagree without being disagreeable is commendable; but all too often, is abused in political conversation these days, and sometimes (gasp) even in this blog.
    I would dare to jump into the sheriff fracas and offer my 3 cents. I believe this argument has been wrongly framed – your focus is on personalities when the spotlight should be on the Constitution and the sharing of power (decentralization). This blog seems to direct a lot of vitriol towards Jeff, and I’m not sure he deserves that.
    I have seen a few defenders of Sheriff Jeff Christopher (SJC) that have been outnumbered, denigrated and accused of being misguided and worse. Frank has usually stayed fairly civil. This is a tough crowd, and it has caused me to think twice about joining the conversation. But I’ve finally decided to say my piece and get bloodied if necessary.
    I read John Sandy’s research on the budget and the loss of county revenue from the contract on the Sussex County Family Court. Many of you think he did a good job. In fairness, I would point out that SJC sent in a valid price increase on an existing contract, which could have been extended. If the proposed price increase was acceptable, and the formality of a new contract was really necessary, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) could have been a bit more accommodating. You may blame the sheriff, but it is only fair to ask if the sheriff had made a formal proposal, is there any proof that the state OMB would have awarded an extension or a new contract. I doubt it. Are we to assume that Sheriff Christopher was solely to blame? Or that OMB used the informal letter as an excuse? How could we possibly know if the OMB had plans to award the contract to some crony of theirs (a popular ploy in government these days), or if some other entity legitimately offered a better price? Was the County Council involved in this in any way? C’mon guys, this is all conjecture, with nothing backing this allegation that the sheriff is to blame.
    There have been a few other allegations against the sheriff – most of them unfounded and even dishonest. Slander is rife in our politics, and it is pulling our country down. We need to back up what we say. John has dazzled some of us with budgets, proposals, and dollars; but placing the blame on the sheriff would not hold up in court. Not even a court in Delaware.
    So the State Supreme Court Justices can’t define “conservator of the peace”? Really?
    It’s obvious that I have little confidence in our court system. Judges appointed by the Governor rather than elected by the people, means their allegiance is to the state, and a liberal Governor will appoint liberal judges (and I suppose a conservative governor would appoint conservative judges). But liberal judges believe in an evolving constitution, which means the constitution evolves to mean whatever they need it to mean that day. Many of you on this blog seem to agree with this silly philosophy. The “Supreme Law of the Land” may as well not exist, if it evolves. It may surprise some, or all of you, that The Constitution must remain inviolate. It is not meant to be reinterpreted over time, and it is not meant to be loosely interpreted either. Change is only by amendment, made difficult by design.
    John calls filling out applications one of the most basic duties of the sheriff’s job. You’re kidding, right? We go through the trouble of an election for someone to fill out applications? What’s wrong with this picture? Are we supposed to feel good about that? The General Assembly circumscribes the sheriff’s duties to serve warrants and preside over foreclosure sales, and Frank, you complain about trips to Las Vegas, and Maryland, spending little time running his office? Running his office? How many sales were not auctioned, how many papers were not served? You guys are really killing me.
    John states, “When you add it all up, lost revenue and attorney fees combined, it has cost us more than $7.5 million for Jeff Christopher to be our sheriff. We deserve better and can’t afford four more years of his ineptitude”. Sorry John, all you offer are more allegations, opinions, wishful thinking, and numbers. You offer no proof of fault, certainly not $7.5M worth. Do you share the same concern about how much the liberal tax and spend governors have cost the state, or what the liberal general assembly’s higher taxes, borrowing, bond issues, and excessive spending, cost the taxpayers; or the fraud, waste, and abuse, in the state and school budgets? Are you concerned about where the influential money comes from, and who is accepting it? You could do all of us a real service if you would apply your research skills to ferret out that kind of info.
    In the case of Deputy Torres, it appears he was squeezed financially by the low pay at the sheriff’s office, and was behind in his car payments. It would seem he did claim overtime he didn’t earn, and for that he was fired. Perhaps that was the only way he could supplement his income, perhaps there is more to the story. OK, so I’m sympathetic to his circumstances. It’s water under the bridge, let it go.
    And so, we come to the issue at hand; actually two issues, one long-term and one short-term. The long-term issue is the Constitution and the sharing of power or decentralization. I hope we can all agree that a major theme of our Constitution is the sharing of power between the co-equal branches of governments and the subordinate governments of state, county, cities, and incorporated townships; thus allowing the people to solve their own problems with the smallest governing entity. And that the normal trend of government is to centralize power or concentrate power into the fewest hands. That is the issue and what is happening, and a neutered County Sheriff supports centralization. The power of all three Delaware counties are being lost to state-owned judges, a county sheriff with no power, and a county council concerning itself with sewers and rezoning. I may be exaggerating a bit, but you get the idea.
    The county should have county elected judges, a county council that has legislative powers, and a sheriff who is the county’s chief-executive. These three county branches should be co-equal, and the sheriff enforces the laws of the county, provides for the safety of county citizens, and acts as a shield between citizens and overreaching state and federal agents and agencies when necessary. When government differs from this model, county citizens lose liberties. What liberties? The liberty of solving their problems locally with local representatives who are part of the community and directly accountable to the county citizens; and of deciding the most efficient way to pay for these solutions with their own and with community money. No incentives from the feds or the state with strings attached.
    The short-term issue is the elections. Both candidates Lee and Gooch have said they will do whatever the county council tells them to do. They will not challenge their circumscribed duties. Our job is finding the best man for the office, and electing him or her. Lee and Gooch are followers who are oblivious to the real issue. Christopher is a leader, who understands the duties of his office. He may not be perfect, but he is trying, he is on the people’s side, and the Constitution’s side. We need more people like him, not less.
    As far as the cost of the lawsuits and the courts, you should blame the people that have been shredding the Constitution and our liberties for the last 50 years, not Sheriff Christopher, who is taking steps to help restore this once great nation of ours. If we re-elect Sheriff Christopher, and take a step closer to restoring county autonomy, that will be the best $77,243.49 we have spent in quite some time.

  34. Frank Knotts says:

    Armand Carreau, while you seem to have a more reasonable delivery style, you have added nothing new to the debate over the powers of the sheriff, nor to the case of why people should re-elect Jeff Christopher.
    In response to your view of the failed bid, you use words like “could have been extended”, ” could have been a bit more accommodating.”
    So it seems that rules and procedures mean nothing for the sheriff, everyone should just make allowances for him, he need not trouble himself by actually completing a formal bid, just send a letter asking for an arbitrary increase with now details or justifications for the increase, but I almost forgot, he is dear leader.
    You then go into complete conjecture mode with this paragraph, ” is there any proof that the state OMB would have awarded an extension or a new contract. I doubt it. Are we to assume that Sheriff Christopher was solely to blame? Or that OMB used the informal letter as an excuse? How could we possibly know if the OMB had plans to award the contract to some crony of theirs (a popular ploy in government these days), or if some other entity legitimately offered a better price? Was the County Council involved in this in any way? C’mon guys, this is all conjecture, with nothing backing this allegation that the sheriff is to blame.”
    You, “doubt it”? So because you doubt something it is true? This entire paragraph is nothing but what ifs and maybes.
    You then say, “Judges appointed by the Governor rather than elected by the people, means their allegiance is to the state,”, so would you also change our Federal system of appointing justices? No respect for the Founders?
    The courts always suck when they find against your views, huh?
    This may be my favorite part of your rambling post, “In the case of Deputy Torres, it appears he was squeezed financially by the low pay at the sheriff’s office, and was behind in his car payments. It would seem he did claim overtime he didn’t earn, and for that he was fired. Perhaps that was the only way he could supplement his income, perhaps there is more to the story. OK, so I’m sympathetic to his circumstances. It’s water under the bridge, let it go.”
    So “former” deputy Torres takes a job that will not support his life style, or lives beyond his means, or has some personal problem that causes him financial difficulties, and that makes it okay to defraud the tax payers? You also say, “Perhaps that was the only way he could supplement his income, perhaps there is more to the story.” There is more to the story, either Christopher was complicit in the fraud, because one would expect the sheriff to have some handle on the hours worked by his deputies and whether the claimed time was factual or not, or else Christopher was derelict in his duties. Take your choice.
    As for water under the bridge? Well since Christopher is still asking to be rehired, I think it is relevant.
    As for your wish list of what should be as far as the “COUNTY” goes, well this makes me wonder whether or not you even live in Delaware, and if so how long, because you have fallen prey to the “everywhere else” syndrome. In Delaware the sheriff is not a county issue. The office was created in the “STATE” constitution, and thus means that any changes to the definition of what a sheriff is spans all three counties, this is why the General Assembly had the power, and was upheld in their legislating away the arrest powers for all three sheriffs. This is Delaware, not any other state, our constitution is in and of itself, what other states do has no bearing on Delaware and cannot and should not be considered by the courts when ruling on the question at hand.
    This next part is either an intentional lie, or a demonstration that you are not bothering to fact check for yourself and like so many only repeat what you are told, ” Both candidates Lee and Gooch have said they will do whatever the county council tells them to do.”
    Robert Lee has said that he will work “with”, not for the County Council, because the council hold the purse strings, you might want to put that on your county wish list as well. He has also said that he will uphold the office in its current definition, and since neither he, nor Beau Gooch, not even demi-god Christopher can change that definition, he is at least being honest with the voters. Unlike Christopher who is trying to make as many people as possible believe that he can change anything, when he can’t, and I’ll bet even you know that.
    And I commend you for being the first Christopher supporter to admit that the law suits actually did cost the tax payers $77,000.00 when you say, ” that will be the best $77,243.49 we have spent in quite some time.”

  35. Laffter says:

    Ummmm the Governor cannot just appoint ” liberal” judges

    Each bench is balanced, with an equal amount of Democrats and Republicans. When an R retirees from the bench, the MUST be replaced with an R and the senate MUST conform the pick.

    It’s not like the a Governor can just willing nelly pack a bench with whomever they want….

    As for Torres, he was FIRED as a cop from his cop job, Milton was the first to experience his unprofessional behavior, and it continued into the NEXT LEO job.
    He was eventually decertified as a LEO in Delaware and this was even BEFORE THE sheriff picked hi sorry lying, thieving ass up.

    The GPS proved, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that he was idling his car at his home and at the homes of “friends” and not all of them gentlemen either…..yup, figure THAT one out.
    He also out in for time while sitting at his child’s school.

    How much did the sheriff spend on overtime brining the deputy’s to the GOP Meetings and the County council meeting for his own political gain?..

    I didn’t know that sussex tax-payers were responsible for footing the bill for the SUSSEX GOP to have armed private guards…..and although he said they were volunteering, a quick perusal of the DOL FLSA would show anyone that an employer cannot make and employee VOLUNTEERS for anything.
    The Deputys work for the citizens, not the sheriff and not the county. They work for US. THEY ARE EMPLOYED by the county.

    All that money for GOP meetings etc should be paid back to the county coffers.

    It’s a done deal, the sheriff is done Inthis county….the sooner the better. Whether we have Lee or Gooch or Donald duck, it doesn’t matter just like anyone that is NOT DON AYOTTE…it’s anyjne but the constitutional sheriff Jeff Christopher….and I will happily help him pack.

    He is going to need the help too from what I’ve heard. Maybe Bambi and ummmmm Thumper can live happily ever after anywhere but here……

  36. Armand Carreau says:

    I had printed Frank’s rebuttal quotes in blue, but that didn’t carry over, so I’ll try to flag Franks quotes with a ~ in front of them:

    ~You have added nothing new to the debate over the powers of the sheriff, not the case for why ~people should re-elect Jeff Christopher.
    Did I have to add something new, or did I just have to make sense?

    ~In response to your view of the failed bid, you use words like “could have been extended” and ” ~could have been a bit more accommodating.” So it seems that rules and procedures mean nothing ~for the sheriff, everyone should just make allowances for him, he need not trouble himself by ~actually completing a formal bid, just send a letter asking for an arbitrary increase with no details ~or justifications for the increase.
    All price submissions and existing contract increases would be arbitrary, even if submitted formally. Any proposal, and any itemized increase can be justified or rationalized. And I would certainly agree that a formal proposal should eventually be filed. But I am not a fan of paperwork for the sake of paperwork, which most governments are famous for. If that is the “rule and procedure” everyone must follow, perhaps a bill should be introduced to submit informal cost estimates first, then select a few of the best looking bids with a background check of each entity’s capabilities, and get formal proposals from the juried few. Price should not be the only criteria. Most qualified entities have a decent idea of estimating the costs of work.
    Because the Sussex County Sheriff’s office had a formal proposal from an existing in-force contract, all necessary information was already available and on file. If his arbitrary 10% price increase was acceptable, or in the ballpark of other arbitrary proposals, and his previous performance record was acceptable, then he should have been notified and asked for a formal proposal. His office was in a more favorable position because of previous performance, than all other competitors. The Sheriff might inadvertently enjoy favored status because of the existing relationship, a known quantity, but not because of who or what he is.

    ~You then go into complete conjecture mode.
    John Sandy alleged that the sheriff was solely to blame for the failed bid. I presented several possible reasons or motives for “reasonable doubt”. They are conjecture not only on my part, but on Sandy’s part as well. Neither of us knows for sure that this is all the sheriff’s fault.

    ~You, “doubt it”? So because you doubt something, it is true?
    This is a big logical jump for you, Frank, the kind liberals and progressive often use (You don’t want to throw more money at education? You hate education!). I doubt that John Sandy has proof that the OMB would have accepted the sheriff’s informal proposal, if only he had submitted a formal proposal. I didn’t claim anything was true. Again, that is why I proposed a few possible reasons why the OMB may have acted the way it did.

    ~You then say, “Judges appointed by the Governor rather than elected by the people, means their ~allegiance is to the state,”
    Where does their paycheck come from, Frank? Is there really any doubt where their allegiance lies? Whether these judges have an L, I, or R after their name is irrelevant, you can bet every one of them has been vetted by the governor or his people. Even you, Frank, understand government is about power and control. This is the control part.

    ~So would you also change our Federal system of appointing justices? No respect for the Founders?
    That’s cute, Frank. I have a lot of respect for the Founders and the Framers (BTW the Founders did not write the Constitution). Justices are appointed to the Supreme Court, judges run the state and local courts. We are not discussing the Supreme Court. For people to have local control, it is necessary to elect county and local judges who then are accountable to the people, and may be voted out if they begin legislating from the bench. If the judges are owned by the governor or the state, the people have no power as most major issues wind up in, and are decided in, the courts. When the courts go off the deep end, as they often do, the County Council and the County Sheriff, being co-equal, can reign them in and countermand them if necessary (a check and balance). Wait! Is that a new reason for a Constitutional Sheriff?

    ~The courts always suck when they find against your views, huh?
    Yes, Frank, they do. But what would that have to do with changing the judicial system? My view on the courts has nothing to do with losing or drawing a case; and changing the system does not guarantee my views would have a better chance of being upheld.

    I will look into Deputy Torres a bit further, you raise some interesting points there. As far as the sheriff seeking re-election, I will concede that Torres is relevant.

    ~As for your wish list of what should be as far as the “COUNTY” goes, well this makes me wonder ~whether or not you even live in Delaware, and if so how long, because you have fallen prey to ~the “everywhere else” syndrome.
    I am originally from NY and have been here nine years. I hope you will not hold this against me. The “everywhere else” syndrome seems to define a certain uniqueness to Delaware’s political way of doing things, and usually I see nothing wrong with differentiating yourselves or your state (and now my state as well). However, if the effects of that uniqueness encourage or enforce centralization of power and a loss of the county’s autonomy, the people should call it into question. If the Constitution offers a better form of county government (and I believe it does), it should be examined and understood, and perhaps championed and changed. I believe that ideas should succeed on their merits, not my wishes.

    ~In Delaware the sheriff is not a county issue. The office was created in the “STATE” constitution, ~and thus means that any changes to the definition of what a sheriff is spans all three counties, this ~is why the General Assembly had the power, and was upheld in their legislating away the arrest ~powers for all three sheriffs.
    I disagree that the sheriff question would necessarily be state-wide. I believe in local power (subsidiarity) and county power. If the Federal Government or the state of Delaware is not making the right decisions for each and all counties, the county should have the power to nullify those policies and decisions and make their own policies and decisions. For instance, if the citizens of Sussex County are fed up with the government/union public school system, they should have the power to use the county school taxes as vouchers to go to whatever school the parent thinks best for the child (the parents are the ones who will have the child’s best interest at heart, not the feds or the state, and perhaps not even the county. The money follows the child). If they find fault with Common Core, they should have the power to nullify that forced curriculum, and institute a better plan. It would be nice for all three counties to agree and have uniform state-wide policies, but it is not necessary.

    As far as the authority of the Gen Assy to change the Delaware Constitution, on the powers of the County Sheriffs, I will withhold an opinion, until I’ve had a chance to research further.

    ~This is Delaware, not any other state, our constitution is in and of itself, what other states do has ~no bearing on Delaware and cannot and should not be considered by the courts when ruling on ~the question at hand.
    I absolutely agree, with the caveat that any state constitution cannot contradict the Constitution of the United States.

    ~This next part is either an intentional lie, or a demonstration that you are not bothering to fact ~check for yourself and like so many only repeat what you are told, ” Both candidates Lee and ~Gooch have said they will do whatever the county council tells them to do.”
    ~Robert Lee has said that he will work “with”, not for the County Council, because the council hold ~the purse strings, you might want to put that on your county wish list as well. He has also said that ~he will uphold the office in its current definition, and since neither he, nor Beau Gooch, not even ~demi-god Christopher can change that definition, he is at least being honest with the voters.
    Shear semantics, as far as I can see, Lee and Gooch are still followers, and not leaders. We are thankful for the honesty of Lee and Gooch, but it was necessary to separate them from Sheriff Christopher. Are you also aware that Lee has said he favors gun registry?
    There is no way we should be “electing” followers. We need people who understand the office and the issues, not folks looking for another government paycheck. I’m happy to see you agree with the allegiance to paychecks (or your term purse strings) as argued in the case made about judges above.

    ~Unlike Christopher who is trying to make as many people as possible believe that he can change ~anything, when he can’t, and I’ll bet even you know that.
    What I know is that this country was built on the idea of individual liberty, and that the government exists by the will and authority of the people. I know that the Constitution promotes local power (subsidiarity), and protects our God-given rights. I know that the country and the Constitution are in great danger. And I know that most US citizens don’t understand their rights, their constitutions, federal or state; and don’t understand when their way of life is under attack, either from outside sources, or ideologies, or by our own government. And I know informed, engaged people can affect great changes, hopefully for the better.

    ~And I commend you for being the first Christopher supporter to admit that the law suits actually did ~cost the tax payers $77,000.00 when you say, ” that will be the best $77,243.49 we have spent in ~quite some time.”
    Everyone assumes there were court costs; exactly what the costs were is anyone’s guess, and that happens to be John Sandy’s guesstimate, it’s as good a figure as any other. If the County Citizens can make better informed decisions and better county structural changes to the county government and how it operates, whatever that cost was and will be on future court costs, it will be well worth it. Those costs will all be recouped over time by a more efficient government. Let’s not pretend anything done will not entail some cost or be accomplished for free. Let’s not pretend that inefficient government or bad policy decisions don’t cost money and misery every year.

    I apologize for the length of these posts, but I think the subject is worth the time and effort. And I appreciate your time and effort, Frank, for presenting another point of view.

    I will try to research the Torres, and the changing of the state constitution issues for my own edification as well as that of your readers.

    Frank, is anyone but the two of us, able to even find this discussion? It seems to be in a pretty obscure place, with no mention on the first page. Am I only entertaining you? And maybe Laffter?

  37. Frank Knotts says:

    Armand, please follow the link to our rules page, http://www.delawareright.com/blog-participation-rules/ you will notice that there is a paragraph that states, “Please limit the length of your comments, again, to create the sense of a conversation and to give others the chance to respond. Length of comments will be a matter of interpretation of those monitoring the comments. If a certain commenter shows a habit of run on comments, then they will be warned. Hopefully that will be enough and no further actions will be needed. Please do not take this to mean that your ideas and thoughts are not welcome, we are simply attempting to keep the site informative and entertaining at the same time.”
    This is your second comment that has called this rule into question, please consider this your warning, further attempt to hi-jack the thread will result in more meaningful actions. If you would like to actually contribute a post, then please follow the contact us information and submit one.
    It is very difficult to respond in book form to a comment written in book form.
    As for the location the last five post are on the first page, with a click point to go to the next five older stories, anyone who wishes to follow the thread simply clicks the “Notify me of follow-up comments by email” that is located below the comment box.
    I will respond just to the hi-lites of your comment, the 10% increase that Christopher asked for in his short letter came with no explanation of why an increase on an existing contract was needed or justified. Do you accept 10% increase on services from providers without explanations? I don’t.
    On the uniqueness of the state of Delaware, that is in reference to the state constitution, and the point being that simply because our constitution does not mirror other states does not make it wrong, just different, states rights is very important.
    This statement shows your hypocrisy, “I disagree that the sheriff question would necessarily be state-wide. I believe in local power (subsidiarity) and county power. If the Federal Government or the state of Delaware is not making the right decisions for each and all counties, the county should have the power to nullify those policies and decisions and make their own policies and decisions.”
    To do this would be to go directly against the state constitution. You can’t have it both ways, you can’t trumpet you love of the constitution and then simply wad it up when it suits you.
    At this point I see no need to continue discussing this with you since you believe you can make up the rules as you go, that is not the rule of law, that is anarchy.

  38. Laffter says:

    dear Armand

    Frank is correct in many way- no one is upset you are from somewhere else BUT that said – when I. Rome do as the Romans do

    We suffered with 2 terms of Sheriff Bib Reed – yuck. Jeff Christopher was one of his acolytes – this idea that JC has is not new
    So, we the residents of sussex county has suffered thru 12 years!!! Three terms of idiot Sheriffs

    This field has been tilled many any times and us old timers remember well tue Reed fights with the REPUBLICAN ATTORNEY GENERAL. This is NOT a partisan issue. This is a certain group trying to impose their will in the people. Not listening to the people and doing their will

    If we wanted sheriff with police powers in Sussex we would have it – it’s that simple. And eventually it may happen. But the time is not now. And if tomorrow Sussex decided to do so- fine
    However – NEVER NEVER NEEVER WOULD WE ALLOW A CARPETBAGGING, dishonest, liar like jeff Christopher and his ilk in power to do so

    The man is flat out dangerous and his association and illegal actions- soon to come to light.- have shown certain people that he should be in jail. Not in public office

    That’s the bottom line. PLEASE look into the Torres incident – his history before Coming into the sheriffs office etx….. Who HIRES SOMEONE LIKE THt? the hiring of Torres shows incredible bad judgement …….

    If you would like links by all means request them here

    Jeff christoper will lose this election. Not because of party or politics but because he has shown himself dishonest and not worthy of the trust of the voters of Sussex County

  39. mouse says:

    Amazing how a political party can so easily be manipulated to support self serving demigods who come back to bite them

  40. mouse says:

    The Republican party has only itself to blame for fostering a climate that invites paranoid conspiracy cranks, bigots, religious fascists and angry resentful types to pour in. It’s a sad and pathetic way to try to win elections appealing and pandering to the most vile, ignorant and nasty people anywhere in the nation

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