Mayor and Council Meeting Minutes – September 6, 2016

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MAYOR AND COUNCIL

SEPTEMBER 6, 2016

Mayor Cerino called the meeting to order at 7:38 p.m. In attendance were Council members Linda Kuiper, Samuel T. Shoge and Mauritz Stetson, W. S. Ingersoll, Town Manager, Jennifer Mulligan, Town Clerk and guests.

Mayor Cerino asked if there were any additions or corrections to the minutes of the Mayor and Council meeting of August 15, 2016. Mr. Stetson moved to approve the minutes as submitted, was seconded by Ms. Kuiper and carried unanimously.

Mayor Cerino stated that total operating cash on hand for unrestricted use is $664,033.21 and there was assigned funds for waterfront initiatives in the amount of $180,480.00. He said if the expected reimbursements totaling $101,748.91 had been received there would be total operating funds of $785,782.12.

Mayor Cerino asked for a motion to pay bills. Mr. Stetson moved to approve payment of the bills as submitted, was seconded by Mr. Shoge and carried unanimously.

Dr. Wayne Benjamin and Ms. Muriel Cole were present to discuss the Health and Wellness Expo, an annual health fair run by Homeports. The Expo will be held on October 20, 2016 at the Kent County High School. Ms. Cole stated that Walgreen’s and the Kent County Health Department are donating vouchers for flu shots this year and will be giving the vaccine during the event. Ms. Cole stated that the expo will focus on all ages, not just the senior population. All teachers will be in attendance as well as representatives from Shore Regional Health and Anne Arundel Hospital.

Ms. Cole stated that there will be between 60 and 70 vendors in attendance for the event and there will be up to 10 speakers on all types of health related topics. She said that the Town could be a sponsor of the event for $250.00 (bronze) or $500.00 (silver).

Dr. Benjamin performed a blood pressure text on Mayor Cerino to demonstrate one of the tests that will be done at no cost the day of the expo.

Mr. Shoge moved to allocate $250.00 (bronze sponsor) to Homeports for their Health and Wellness Expo to be held on October 20, 2016 at the Kent County High School, was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.

Mayor Cerino stated that the Washington College SGA would attend the September 19th meeting to introduce new officers and present goals for the semester.

Mr. Chuck Patterson and Mr. Zachary Secor of SM+P Architects were present to give an overview of the preliminary sketches for the Marina Interpretive Center. Mayor Cerino stated that the existing Marina store, boat shed and Williams Marine building would be removed and an interpretive center would be built containing a marina store, interpretive panels, bathrooms and showers for transient boaters and retail space on the first floor. The second floor would be an open space for meetings and/or events.

Mr. Patterson stated that they were trying to create a gateway to the Town from the Marina using the proposed building as a centerpiece. Mr. Secor stated that the walk from the docks to the parking lot and to the building would create a strong element encouraging people to move beyond the Marina and into Town. He said that there would be a large deck off the back of the building to provide a meeting space for people or perhaps retail, such as vending and ice machines.

Mr. Secor stated that the proposed building would be 41’8” wide, 85’ long and 43’ tall. The current building (40’ wide, 50’ long and 25’ high) and the adjacent metal shed (50’wide, 60’ long and 30’ high) will be removed. He said that this proposed building was taller than others on the block but also would be a statement building for the Town.

Mr. Secor stated that the first floor would have an interpretive center closest to the docks including a small marine space. A larger retail space would be located on the street side of the first floor. Centered in between those spaces would be the restrooms and showers. The second floor would have scenic views of the river and house a large multi-purpose space for meetings and gatherings and an outdoor patio. The second floor would have 2 restrooms and a small storage space.

Mr. Secor stated that facing Water Street, the building would take on residential proportions and some parts of the building would be setback further from the street. The front face of the building would be sided with weathered shiplap and other elevations would have a more industrial feel with in metal with prefinished vertical seams. Steel cable railings with wood caps maximized the views to the River.

Mr. Shoge asked who would operate the retail space. Mayor Cerino stated that he envisioned the retail space operated by a separate business who would rent from the Town. Mr. Shoge stated there did not appear to be much storage or closet space for a retail business or other items that would be necessary for the bathrooms or interpretive center. Mr. Patterson stated that right now that space is limited, but additional interior space can be designed.

Ms. Kuiper asked what would be located in the interpretive center space.   Mayor Cerino stated that he thought basic marina supplies as well as visitor information on Chestertown, Kent County, Washington College, local businesses, places to visit, maps, etc. would be included at the Interpretive Center. He said that it would also include panels on the walls describing the history of the area. He said weather proof exterior panels could be installed as well.

Mr. Secor stated that they were still working with McCrone on placement of some items such as fuel tanks and dumpsters.

Mr. Shoge stated that all Town owned buildings were brick and said he did not think the design fit in with those buildings. Mr. Secor stated that in design, they looked to surrounding buildings and the buildings along this particular block were generally not brick. He said that they also wanted to be different than the Town center and said that while going through the process would hope to find a balance for the building with the surrounding community.

Mr. Stetson asked if the steps to the building were concrete. Mr. Secor stated that the steps would be a decking material such as IPE.

Mr. Shoge asked if the building would be LEED certified. Mr. Patterson stated that a LEED certification has not been discussed, but in this particular location the building codes were stringent so although it may not be LEED platinum, the building would be quite energy efficient.

Mr. Secor stated that this building design was 5,700 sq.ft. with an additional 1,500 sq.ft. boardwalk and patio.

Mayor Cerino stated that once colors and landscaping were added to the building he thought the building would have a softer look. Mayor Cerino added that the Historic District Commission was reviewing the plans on Wednesday, September 7th.

Ms. Kay McIntosh was next on the agenda. She stated that she was working on a project with the A&E Advisory Committee and the Marketing Committee to replace the parking meters bags with stickers covering up the windows of the meters. The stickers would have a message welcoming guests and indicating that parking is free. She said that they would also like to include a message on the sidewalk side of the meter suggesting that a donation to the meter would go to the beautification of downtown Chestertown. Mr. Shoge suggested a small placard in each store by the cash registers asking for donations of change to the Downtown Chestertown Association.

Ms. Kuiper moved that the Council support the A&E District exploring signage for parking meters as described, was seconded by Mr. Shoge and carried unanimously.

Mr. Ingersoll stated that Ms. Kuiper wanted to discuss issuance of parking fines on Park Row during the Farmers Market. Mr. Ingersoll stated that Chief could not make the meeting this evening but said there either a $10.00 fine could be issued under one section of the Parking Ordinance or the offense could be considered a misdemeanor under a separate section. Mr. Ingersoll stated that there are signs telling people not to park and said that they were being ignored. This causes problems for the vendors in the market on Saturday mornings and the police should do whatever they can, starting the evening before, to enforce the parking rules. Ms. Kuiper stated that an officer in the park on Saturday mornings to ticket would be helpful.

Mr. Ingersoll stated that a ribbon cutting would be held at the Kent County Middle School campus at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, September 12, 2016 near the tennis courts. Mr. Ingersoll stated that Mr. de Mooy did a great job on this project, making it a true campus.

Mr. Ingersoll stated that the dedication of Washington College’s new academic building, Cromwell Hall, would be held on Saturday, September 23rd and the College has asked to waive residential parking that day in anticipation of the crowd on that day. The Council agreed to the request.

Mayor Cerino stated that he would like a motion to reappoint Ms. Morgan Ellis to the Planning Commission for a 5 year term. Mr. Shoge moved to reappoint Ms. Morgan Ellis to the Planning Commission was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.

Mayor Cerino stated that he would like a motion to reappoint Mr. Ed Minch to the Historic District Commission for a 3 year term. Mr. Shoge moved to reappoint Mr. Ed Minch to the Historic District Commission for a 3 year term, was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.

Mayor Cerino stated that he would like a motion to reappoint Mr. Robert Tyson to the Ethics Commission for a 3 year term. Mr. Shoge moved to reappoint Mr. Robert Tyson to the Ethics Commission for a 3 year term, was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.

Mayor Cerino asked for a motion to reappoint Ms. Loretta Lodge to the Board of Supervisor of Elections for a 4 year term. Mr. Shoge moved to reappoint Ms. Loretta Lodge to the Board of Supervisors of Elections for a 4 year term, was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.  

Mayor Cerino stated that a member of the Ethics Commission is stepping down so a replacement would be needed.

Mayor Cerino stated that he and Mr. Ingersoll met with an organizer of the Harry Potter Festival to discuss the upcoming event. He said that the festival was requesting the use of Fountain Park staring at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, October 1st for Potter in the Park. This would mean relocating the artisans and some farmers to Memorial Plaza for that one day. Ms. Kuiper stated that Ms. Wanda Gorman (artisans’ manager) should be brought into the conversation but said that she did not think it would be a problem to move for one day. Ms. Kuiper stated that she thought it might be better to close off High Street and relocating the artisans to the High Street walk.

Mr. Ingersoll stated that the request was made in the meeting to close High Street and if Park Row and High Street were closed that day it would make the event more intimate and allow the artisans, farmers and non-profits all to participate. He said that he would speak to Chief Baker. Mayor Cerino stated that he thought the business owners would not mind the High Street closure since there were so many people going into the shops that weekend.

Mr. Shoge moved for Mr. Ingersoll to rearrange the Farmers Market on Saturday, October 1 for the Harry Potter Festival and to work with Chief Baker to see how to best coordinate the street closures, including alerting the businesses was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.

Ms. Kuiper stated that Town was so congested on Saturday mornings that she was concerned someone would be struck by a car if something was not done about traffic.

Mr. Stetson stated that the 40 mph sign on Rt. 20 after the round-a-bout has still not been removed. He noted that that there was an identical 40 mph sign just past Flatland Road and said that he would like a letter to be written to Secretary of Transportation asking SHA again to remove the sign.

Mr. Stetson stated that the new Sultana headquarters was beautiful and said that the dedication was a truly nice event with Mayor Cerino giving the best speech.

Mr. Stetson stated that he received a formal complaint regarding the back alley being blocked by trucks at Washington Square. He said that he thinks he will be able to work with the stores for a solution.

Mr. Stetson stated that he received a complaint about dogs digging holes in the Dog Park. He said that if someone sees their dog digging a hole they need to fill it and not allow their dog to dig.

Mr. Shoge asked when paving would take place. Mr. Ingersoll stated that paving would begin when the police station sold.

Mr. Shoge stated that he was hoping the new Dixon annexation would be pedestrian friendly as many of the College students are walking to the shopping areas and beyond. He said that the rail crossings on Rt. 291 should be made more accessible to pedestrians as well. Mr. Stetson stated that if the Rail-Trail could be linked in by the step-pool conveyances it would be nice. Mayor Cerino stated that the next Rail-Trail phase was the best way to get people safely across the bypass and the Town would move forward once the Department of Transportation permits were in hand.

Ms. Kuiper stated that there was a hole at the Fountain Park near the horse trough and trees needed trimming.

Ms. Kuiper stated that she forwarded pictures today showing large bulk trash bags that were left on roads once grass clippings were emptied by the street crew.

Ms. Kuiper stated that the U.S. Naval Academy Electric Brigade Concert had taken place at Washington College earlier in the evening.

Ms. Kuiper stated that it was a shame that the Labor Day concert by Peoples Bank was cancelled due to the predicted hurricane this weekend, as it turned out to be a beautiful day after all.

Ms. Kuiper stated that if anyone receives a call claiming to be from the IRS, it is a scam. The IRS does not call people on the phone.

Mayor Cerino stated that the Schooner America was in Town and would be sailing with Sultana on the following day from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Tours of the boat would be given from 10 a.m. to noon and 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Mayor Cerino asked if there were any questions or comments from the audience. Mr. Menefee asked if there was any information on the food truck pilot program. Mayor Cerino stated that the draft resolution would be on the agenda at the next meeting on September 19, 2016.

There being no further business, Mr. Shoge moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:55 p.m., was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.

Submitted by:                                                 Approved by:

Jennifer Mulligan                                            Chris Cerino

Town Clerk                                                     Mayor

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