MAYOR AND COUNCIL
JUNE 6, 2016
Mayor Cerino called the meeting to order at 7:52 p.m. In attendance were Council members Liz Gross, Linda Kuiper 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 Budget Workshops of May 5 and May 9 or the Mayor and Council meeting of May 16, 2016. Mr. Stetson moved to approve the minutes as submitted, was seconded by Ms. Gross and carried unanimously.
Mayor Cerino called the executive session to order at 8:36 p.m., May 16, 2016 in accordance with§3-305(b)(7) of the Open Meetings Act. The purpose of the meeting was to meet with counsel to consider an agreement regarding the Hospital oil spill. In attendance at the meeting were Council members Liz Gross, Linda C. Kuiper, Samuel T. Shoge and Mauritz Stetson, W.S. Ingersoll, Town Manager, Robert L. Sipes, Utilities Director, Charles MacLeod, Esquire, Michael Forlini, Esquire and Jennifer Mulligan, Town Clerk. No motions were made or passed. The meeting adjourned at 9:58 p.m. Minutes were taken and are part of the record. Ms. Gross moved to approve the summary of the Executive Session of May 16, 2016 was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.
Mayor Cerino asked for a motion to pay bills. Mr. Stetson moved to pay the bills as presented, was seconded by Ms. Gross and carried unanimously.
Mr. Zane Carter of River Fest stated that he presented the idea of a sculpture garden at a previous meeting and said that the silt is too deep to install the sculptures on pilings as originally hoped. He said that there was a new plan incorporating the substructure of the boardwalk by using cantilevering angle-iron mounting brackets that clamped to the crossbeams on the pilings. He showed a drawing of how the mounting brackets would appear when installed, noting that they would counter balance one another. He said that the substructures weigh 200 lbs. when assembled and each art piece would not weigh over 100 lbs. for a total of 400 lbs. Mr. Carter stated that there would likely be between 4 and 8 sculptures in place at River Fest. Mr. Carter stated that he was still planning to light the sculptures with low-voltage solar lighting using an onshore solar station. Ms. Kuiper moved to approve the substructures for the river walk between High Street and Cannon Street for River Fest, was seconded by Ms. Gross and carried unanimously.
Mr. Ingersoll stated that Ordinance 02-2016 Budget for Fiscal Year 2017 could be adopted this evening. Mayor Cerino read the Ordinance into the record. Ms. Gross moved to approve Ordinance 02-2016 Budget for Fiscal Year 2017 was seconded by Mr. Stetson and passed with three (3) in favor, Ms. Kuiper opposed.
Ms. Kuiper stated that she opposed the budget because she did not agree that the Town employees’ cost in premiums for health insurance remained the same when there was a 3.8% decrease in premiums and said that she thought the difference should be realized in their salaries. Ms. Kuiper stated that she would like to request that all grants be itemized and that there be a separate budget for the Chestertown Police Department. Ms. Kuiper stated that she would also like any balance in the FY2016 budget be moved to capital funds for the FY2017 budget.
Mr. Ingersoll stated that a permit request had been submitted for the Bloomsday Festival scheduled for Thursday, June 16, 2017. Mr. Ingersoll read the permit request into the record. Ms. Gross stated that she thought that road closing permits were supposed to come in 30 days prior to an event and said that a road closure can be an inconvenience to those living on or owning businesses in the area. Ms. Kuiper agreed. She said that they were also supposed to present this to the Mayor and Council in person because there was so much miscommunication last year. Mr. Ingersoll stated that the road closure would be from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. with “No Parking” in front of the Hotel and Garfield Center from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Ms. Kuiper moved to approve the permit with the understanding that the applicants must personally appear next year before the Mayor and Council at least 30 days before their function with a note added to this year’s permit indicating that street closures require 30-days’ notice, was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried with three (3) in favor, Ms. Gross opposed.
Mr. Ingersoll stated that there was a permit request from the Historical Society for Legacy Day scheduled for Saturday, August 13, 2016 from 4:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Ms. Kuiper stated that she would like to see the fence erected around the flowers in Fountain Park for Legacy Day so the plantings are not ruined. Ms. Kuiper moved to approve the permit request with the understanding that the recycling containers and pick-up of recycling as required by Maryland State Law are at the expense of the event, was seconded by Ms. Gross and carried unanimously.
Ms. Kuiper stated that events with over 200 in attendance are now required to recycle by State law. She said that the Tea Party Committee pays for the festival’s recycling and other large events should be required to do so. Ms. Kuiper stated that the State law was passed down to the Town to enforce but the citizens of Chestertown should not have to pay for it.
Mr. Ingersoll stated that one of the organizers for Legacy Day asked if there was someone on staff that could remove and replace the trash bags during the event. Mr. Ingersoll stated that this was a night time event when staff is not usually working. Mr. Ingersoll stated that typically the street crew adds extra bags to the bottom of the trash can and the bags can be left in the park for pick up the next day. He said that otherwise the Council would have to authorize the overtime.
Mr. Drew McMullen was present on behalf of the Sultana Education Foundation with a permit request for Downrigging Weekend which will be held October 28th through October 30th. He said that there were no changes to the permit from last year, except that they were not planning to use the large shed at the Marina. Ms. Gross moved to approve the permit request for Downrigging as submitted, was seconded by Ms. Kuiper and carried unanimously.
Mr. Ingersoll stated that notice was received earlier in the day that the General Assembly approved $200,000.00 in additional Waterway Improvement Funding for the Marina, which required a match. He said that the Town was working on USDA funding which could be used as a match.
Mr. Ingersoll stated that he had circulated the mobile MVA fall schedule to most of those in the room (July 18 and 19, August 8 and 9, September 19 and 20, October 17 and 18, November 21, and December12 and 13).
Mr. Ingersoll requested an Executive Session after the meeting to meet with counsel to discuss an agreement with the Hospital. Ms. Gross moved for an Executive Session after the Mayor and Council meeting under the authority of General Provisions Article §3-305(b)(7) to consult with legal counsel on a legal matter, was seconded by Mr. Stetson and carried unanimously.
Mayor Cerino stated read a Proclamation declaring Tuesday, June 7, 2016 as “Chestertown Garden Club Day” in Chestertown in celebration of their 85th Anniversary.
Mayor Cerino stated that the Council was invited to the groundbreaking for the County fiber optic network on Monday, June 13th at 11:00 a.m. on the corner of Morgnec Road and Washington Avenue.
Mayor Cerino stated that historic markers will be installed in honor of Henry Highland Garnet with a dedication ceremony on Saturday, June 25, 2016 at 1:00 p.m. at the elementary school.
Mr. Stetson stated that he was happy to see the Hogan’s Building, which was destroyed by fire, has been demolished and removed.
Mr. Stetson stated that he was still hearing comments from residents about the College not making payments in lieu of taxes. Mr. Stetson stated that he knew the College had to voluntary make those payments and suggested that people write the College directly to lodge their complaints.
Mr. Stetson stated that he attended a meeting of the CBG on May 25th where the Zika Virus was discussed. He said that this is a serious problem and citizens had to be vigilant about standing water as that is where mosquitos lay their eggs.
Ms. Kuiper stated that the Tea Party was a success with approximately 40 new vendors this year and that things ran smoothly all weekend. Ms. Kuiper stated that many of the vendors comment on how nice of an event the Tea Party is each year. Ms. Kuiper said that the Tea Party does need volunteers for next year’s event.
Ms. Kuiper stated that the Marina Manager received many compliments over the weekend. She suggested that each of the Council members to donate $100.00 to pay for 50 free boat launches on the 4th of July so that boaters could watch the fireworks from the river. Mr. Stetson stated that he did not like that idea and the Council did not act on the idea.
Ms. Kuiper stated that someone in a wheelchair fell off the sidewalk at the Visitors Center. She said that she would like the ADA compliance looked into at that entrance and that widening of the sidewalk at the center should be made a priority.
Ms. Kuiper asked if there could be mosquito treatment at the step-pools on Washington Avenue. Mr. Ingersoll stated that the fish and frogs in the ponds should be taking care of the mosquitos at the step-pools, noting that shallow standing water was the issue with mosquitos. Chief Baker agreed that other forms of wildlife ate mosquito larvae. He said that he would check with the person who does the spraying for mosquitos. A guest in the audience suggested that it might be cheaper to stock the pools with fish that would eat the larvae.
Ms. Gross stated that she wanted to congratulate Mr. Shoge on his marriage this past weekend and wished him a happy time on his honeymoon.
Ms. Gross stated that the National Music Festival was now in full-swing and concerts were selling out.
There was a comment from an audience member that on Rt. 20 by the Gateway Park, the speed limit east bound on Maryland Rt. 20 is 25 mph on the but it is 40 mph westbound. Mr. Ingersoll said that he would contact the SHA about the signage.
Mr. Dan Menefee asked if anyone at the Town has questioned the ethicacy of MDE reopening the PCE and MTBE cases. Mayor Cerino stated that he just learned of the cases being reopened at the Utilities Meeting earlier in the evening. He also stated that MDE intimated other contaminants when they responded to the Town’s request for a three (3) way Consent Order with MDE and the Hospital. Mayor Cerino stated that if a private entity contaminates the groundwater it is MDE’s job to see that the entity remediate and remove the contaminants, not the Town’s job.
There being no further business, Mr. Stetson moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:55 p.m., was seconded by Ms. Gross and carried unanimously.
Submitted by: Approved by:
Jennifer Mulligan Chris Cerino
Town Clerk Mayor