CHESTERTOWN MAYOR AND COUNCIL MEETING
OCTOBER 16, 2023
Acting Mayor Efland called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. In attendance were Councilmembers Tim O’Brien and Jose Medrano, Larry DiRe (Town Manager), and guests.
Acting Mayor Efland asked if there were any additions or corrections to the Mayor and Council minutes of October 2, 2023. Councilman Medrano moved to approve the minutes of the Mayor and Council meeting of October 2, 2023. The motion was seconded by Councilman O’Brien and carried unanimously.
Acting Mayor Efland reported that the cash on hand was $2,833,656.47. Councilman Medrano made a motion to pay the bills. The motion was seconded by Councilman O’Brien and passed unanimously.
Chief Ron Dixon presented the Chestertown Police Department (CPD) September monthly report. He reported that the call volume was busier in September than in August but calls for service were standard.
Chief Dixon reported there were fourteen (14) juvenile arrests, up from six (6) in August. He noted that CPD would continue to tackle the juvenile issue and would make referrals for delinquent behavior if necessary. Chief Dixon stated that the juvenile crimes were for assault, theft, burglary, trespassing, motor vehicle theft, failure to appear and fraud. There was a discussion on youth programs and activities around town. Chief Dixon noted that parents were allowing their children to wander the streets at all hours.
Chief Dixon reported there were 484 red speed camera citations issued and 40 parking citations issued. He noted that the Town received approval to install another red speed camera on Morgnec Road, opposite side of the road from the current red speed camera.
Chief Dixon reviewed the department’s overtime. He noted there was reimbursement overtime for the narcotic taskforce that the state would reimburse.
Chief reviewed various functions he attended over the past month:
- Met with the Lions Club to review details on the Halloween Parade.
- Met with the Sultana Group to review facility safety at the Cross Street location where there will be classrooms and to review details on the Downrigging event.
- Met with Shore Regional Health to review hospital safety and procedures.
- Met with the Washington College director of public safety and assisted with the review of the final two (2) candidates for the Assistant Director’s position.
- Monthly Department of Social Services Child Advocate Center meeting.
- Met with Calvert Heights Management and IT to discuss their security and camera.
- Cars on High
- Trunk or Treat
Chief Dixon reported that the department is 100% complete with Medical and CPR training.
Chief Dixon reported that a student painted the side of his patrol car. It wasn’t permanent and washed off. The college is addressing the issue internally and there will be criminal charges after he consults with the school.
Town Manager’s Report
Mr. DiRe reported on the town boards, commissions, and committees’ activity, gave an update on the Town Marnia, and addressed the parking on Haacke Drive.
Mr. O’Brien thanked Mr. DiRe for the quick response for resolving the street lighting issues.
There was a brief discussion regarding the Historic District Commission training.
Mr. Ben Tilghman reviewed the proposed site for the puzzle sculpture on the sidewalk on High Street. The concrete riser and height of the sculpture was addressed with the power company. It was agreed to hold the vote on the placement of this sculpture until the next meeting.
Councilman O’Brien made a motion to approve the two (2) spots that were proposed for the new Artscape Sculptures. The motion was seconded by Councilman Medrano and passed unanimously.
Councilman O’Brien made a motion to send a letter to the hospital announcing the Towns interest in negotiating the four (4) acres at Bailey Park. The motion was seconded by Councilman Medrano and passed unanimously.
Ms. Efland reviewed the Board of Education’s (BOE) unanimous vote to build the new middle school in Chestertown at the current location. She reviewed the grants that would help pay for the construction of the school.
Mr. Thomas Dietz reviewed the Energy Audit and Recommended Actions. He reviewed the Energy Audit Conducted, Lighting Survey Conducted, HVAC Systems Surveyed, Incentives for building energy efficiency upgrades, HVAC Upgrades and Solar Options viable.
Councilman O’Brien made a motion to instruct the Town Manager to interact with Mr. Dietz proposal to spend a $1000 or less on the energy upgrades. The motion was seconded by Councilman Medrano and passed unanimously.
Ms. Efland introduced and read into record, Resolution 06-2023 – Repealing and Re-Enacting §C5-8. Nominations.
Mr. O’Brien reported:
- He went around town and logged all streetlights that needed replacement and turned the list over to the Town Manager.
- There are still a few residents complaining about the pre-8:00 am Sunday trash pickups.
- He provided the Town Manager with a request to clarify if a private group could provide a tiny house, to be placed on private property in town limits for housing the homeless.
Mr. Medrano reported:
- He has received positive feedback regarding the BOE’s vote to keep the middle school in Chestertown.
- His meeting with Coventry Farms was canceled and will be held in November to discuss opening Carpenter Park to the Coventry Park Community and creating a trail near Devon Drive to link the two (2) areas.
- He thanked the Town Manager for getting the streetlights fixed.
Ms. Efland reported:
- She attended a planning meeting with Washington College for the Maker Space Initiative Program to be located at the old Dixon Value building.
- She met with the Environmental Committee regarding the plastic bag ordinance.
- Bocce tournament.
- Ward 2 and 4 elections
- Sultana Lawrence Wetland Preserve
- Chestertown River Arts Studio Tour.
At 7:51 p.m., Pursuant to General Provisions Article §3-305(b)(3) To consider the acquisition of real property for a public purpose and matters directly related thereto. Councilman O’Brien made a motion to go into an Executive session to discuss a personnel matter and to consult with counsel. The motion was seconded by Councilman Medrano and passed unanimously.
Mayor and Council adjourned from Closed Session at 8:35 pm.
Councilman O’Brien made a motion to allow the Town Manager to engage an architect and move forward on plans to expand the current Town Marina building within a budget up to $70,000. The motion was seconded by Councilman Medrano and passed unanimously.
There being no further business, Councilman Medrano moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:40 pm. The motion was seconded by Councilman O’Brien and carried unanimously.
Submitted by: Approved by:
Lynda Thomas, Town Clerk Megan Efland, Acting Mayor
OCTOBER 16, 2023
The Mayor and Council meeting will resume in person meetings at Town Hall. A livestream feed is available at www.townofchestertown.com.
MAYOR AND COUNCIL MEETING
- Call meeting to order
- Minutes of October 2, 2023, Mayor and Council meetings
- Operating funds on hand
- Payment of bills
- Consent Calendar
- Chief Ron Dixon police report
- Town Manager’s report
- Mayor’s Report
- Old Business
- Vote on proposed Art Sculptures
- Bailey Park Letter
- Energy Study results and proposed action
- New Middle School
- New Business
- Introduce Resolution 06-2023 – Repealing and Re-Enacting §C5-8. Nominations Ward Reports
- Requests from the public to be on the agenda:
- Questions or comments
- Executive Session – General Provisions Article, §3-305(b)(3) To consider the acquisition of real property