MAYOR AND COUNCIL
FEBRUARY 17, 2015
Mayor Cerino called the meeting to order at 7:34 p.m. In attendance were Council members Liz Gross, 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 February 2, 2015 and the Public Hearing of February 9, 2015. Ms. Gross moved to approve the Mayor and Council meeting minutes of February 2, 2015 and February 9, 2015 as presented, was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.
Mayor Cerino stated that cash on hand and in the banks was $1,827,988.92 and there was the Washington College donation of $196,740.00 for a total of $2,024,728.92. Ms. Gross complemented Ms. Campbell on the new format of reporting.
Mayor Cerino asked for a motion to pay bills. Mr. Stetson moved to pay the bills as submitted, was seconded by Mr. Shoge and carried unanimously.
Mayor Cerino introduced the 2015 Garnett Elementary School Reading Challenge Winners. Ms. Kuiper stated that this year the competition was between staff and students. The winners were as follows:
• Second Grade: Mariah DeAndrade at 32,119 words
• Third Grade: Aaron Saunders at 821,421 words
• Fourth Grade: Braiden Bakeoven at 510,805 words, and;
• Fifth Grade: Alystair McKenzie at 645,570 words.
Each student received a certificate from the Town and a gift certificate from Ms. Kuiper.
Ms. Kuiper also acknowledged Ms. Florence Terrill (2015 Teacher of the Year) and Ms. Amy Crowding (who was the teacher at Garnett who helped to organize the reading challenge program).
Mr. Stewart Bruce, Washington College GIS Program Coordinator, was present and gave a PowerPoint presentation of the GIS program in Chestertown. He went over the history of GIS in Chestertown and ideas for future projects. The presentation showed a tree canopy study, an impervious area study, a historic building inventory (which was linked to a 1920s census) and a street light mapping project. Samples of a 3d rendering for Chestertown were also shown.
Mr. Bruce stated that he has had discussions with Mr. Sipes regarding mapping the water system, noting that the Chestertown Fire Department already has a map of hydrants in Town. Crime maps have also been prepared for the Police Department in the past, funded by the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention.
Mr. Bruce stated that it may be helpful for the Town to have a street tree maintenance database in the future.
Mr. Bruce stated that if the Town had interest in the street light mapping, they were also creating a web-enabled database where anyone could report a light outage to the buildings and grounds department at the College. Mr. Ingersoll asked if GIS was aware of the streetlight system that Delmarva had put in place for streetlight outages. Mr. Bruce stated that he has not seen the Delmarva Power database.
Mr. Shoge asked if the Town had access to all of the maps. Mr. Bruce stated that Mr. de Mooy has access to the files that Washington College and Chestertown worked on together with the expansion of the Historic District. Mr. Shoge stated that there was a tab on the website specifically for maps and it would be a great place for the GIS mapping pertaining to Chestertown.
Mr. Bruce stated that if grants became available for the College, the Town could write a letter of support for the grant and the College would manage the grant and provide services to the Town. Mr. Bruce stated that tours of the GIS lab were available if anyone was interested.
Chief Baker gave the 2014 Annual Report for the Police Department and January’s monthly statistics. Ms. Gross asked for more insight about the Department and their goals for the future in the Annual Report.
Chief Baker stated that the greatest difficulty in town is the peripheral crimes that drugs create, such as theft. He stated that staffing was at thirteen (13) officers, noting that the norm is to be under-staffed by virtue of injuries or illness. He said that this year alone, the Department was down four (4) officers for several months, so it would be of interest to add an officer or two (2) in the near future.
Chief Baker stated that minor changes had already been made to the new Police Department at 601 High Street. The Department was moving forward with plans to occupy the second floor of the building within the next few weeks. He said that renovations to the first floor would take place when the daycare vacated the property, creating a lobby and doorway for interior police quarters. He said that they were also planning to expand the parking lot and to add cameras. Future renovations would be addressed in the upcoming budget.
Chief Baker stated that he was pleased with the reduction of crime in Chestertown this year. He said that he was working with community members on many issues. A second canine was added to the force and has been productive. Two (2) officers left in the last year and two (2) new officers were added to the force who were progressing along. Chief Baker said that one of the greatest accomplishments was the purchase of the new building and thanked Mr. Ingersoll for his help in making the purchase a reality.
The Mayor called on Mr. Ingersoll for his report. Mr. Ingersoll stated that the corrected zoning map, on the agenda, was not available at this meeting and would be presented at the first meeting in March. He said that there were mapping errors discovered in the past two years of working with the new maps and the Planning Commission had approved the corrections to the map.
Dr. Wayne Benjamin and Ms. Muriel Cole were present on behalf of Homeports. Homeports was hosting Health Fair for the entire community on Thursday, April 2nd to be held at the Kent County Middle School. There would be free health screenings offered for osteoporosis, diabetes, body mass index and lung capacity. There would be between fifty (50) and sixty (60) exhibitors demonstrating their products and local services. There would also be free talks by local physicians on various health related issues. Ms. Cole asked if the Town would like to become a “Bronze Sponsor” of the event, noting that the $250.00 donation it would enable Homeports to provide coffee and breakfast snacks. Mr. Shoge moved for a $250.00 donation to Homeports to enable them to provide coffee and breakfast snacks for the Health Fair scheduled for Thursday, April 2nd, was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.
Mayor Cerino stated that there has been a vacancy left on the Planning Commission with the passing of Gil Watson and said that he would like to nominate and appoint Mr. Darell Craig to the Planning Commission. Mayor Cerino stated that Mr. Craig has a developer’s background and had very good credentials for the position. The Council decided to allow the nomination and approval process to occur in one meeting as Mr. Watson had been unable to attend meetings for several months before passing. Mr. Gross moved to appoint Mr. Darell Craig to the Planning Commission to fill Mr. Watson’s unexpired term, was seconded by Mr. Shoge and carried unanimously.
Mayor Cerino stated that he has been emailing with Ms. Nancy Maguire and a representative of Fourwinds Interactive Sign Company regarding the I-Sign. He said that Fourwinds would like to make a virtual presentation at the next Mayor and Council meeting. Mayor Cerino stated that he would like to make a decision by the end of March as to what will happen with the I-Sign. Ms. Kuiper suggested putting it at the entrance to Town Hall where it would be protected from direct sunlight and the elements.
Mayor Cerino stated that he had a meeting with the United States Department of Agriculture and learned that there were real grant opportunities for economic development plans in rural areas and said that there were several facets of the Marina project that appealed to them. He said that they were exploring different grants and/or low-interest long-term loans that could be given to match State grants, making for nominal payments.
Mayor Cerino stated that the Mayor and Council funded Locust Grove Studios to make artistic renderings of the engineering plan that came out of the charrettes for the Marina. He explained each rendering in detail, noting the sketches of buildings, the boat ramp, kayak storage and waterside views of the docks. Ms. Gross stated that she thought there should be an image from the Cannon Street pier. Mayor Cerino agreed, noting that he thought two or three images were needed.
Mayor Cerino stated that he was pushing McCrone for more details, such as connections for the floating docks to the bulkheads, amount of fill required, etc. and said he hoped to make a large push for USDA funding at the end of the month.
Ms. Gross stated that she wanted to commend the Street Crew on clearing the streets of snow.
Ms. Gross stated that she would also like to address the parking meter issue at the next meeting as the 6-month trial period ended January 31st. Ms. Kuiper stated that she would survey the downtown businesses on the parking meter issue, noting that she has never had a problem finding a parking place any day of the week downtown. Mayor Cerino agreed.
Ms. Kuiper stated that Hegland Glass was featured in the American Craft magazine this month and the American Craft Council Show was being held in Baltimore this weekend. She said that River Arts was running a bus trip on Saturday to the show.
Mr. Shoge stated that he would like an opportunity to ride in one of the snowplows during the next storm. He said he was impressed with the men and their dedication during a storm. Mr. Ingersoll stated that he would arrange for Mr. Shoge to have a ride-along with the men who drove a snow plow with a double cab.
Mayor Cerino stated that Ms. Handley asked to be on the agenda, but rescheduled for the March agenda.
There being no further business, Mr. Gross moved to adjourn the meeting at 9:20 p.m., was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.
Submitted by: Approved by:
Jennifer Mulligan Chris Cerino
Town Clerk Mayor