MAYOR AND COUNCIL
JUNE 21, 2022
Mayor Foster called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. In attendance were Councilmembers Tom Herz, Jose Medrano and Meghan Efland, Jennifer McCann (Town Clerk) and guests.
Mayor Foster asked if there were any additions or corrections to the Mayor and Council meeting of June 6, 2022 or the public hearing of the same date. Ms. Herz moved to approve minutes of the Mayor and Council meeting and public hearing of June 6, 2022, was seconded by Ms. Efland and carried unanimously.
Mayor Foster stated that operating funds on hand was $2,283,340.25.
Mayor Foster asked for a motion to pay the bills. Ms. Efland moved to approve payment of the bills as submitted, was seconded by Mr. Herz and carried unanimously.
Mr. Thomas Hayman was present on behalf of the Chestertown Tea Party Parade and thanked the Town, the Kent County Rescue Squad and Chestertown Volunteer Fire Department for their help during the festival. He said that it is always an enjoyable day in Town, but he knows that some residents find it can be difficult getting around that day and he appreciated their cooperation and thanked them for their patience. Mr. Hayman said that anyone interested in volunteering can go to www.chestertownteaparty.org to find out the details.
Mayor Foster stated that there was a request from the Conkling family to host a fireworks show from the Wilmer Park on Thursday evening, June 23rd at Wilmer Park in memory of their father, John Conkling. Ms. Hart (Mr. Conkling’s daughter) stated that this will be a 15 minute show beginning at 9:15 p.m. and that all proper permits have been secured. The Council agreed to the use of the Wilmer Park property for the fireworks show. Mr. Conkling stated that if there was ever a need to help get a fireworks show together for Chestertown that he would be willing to help.
Ms. McCann stated that a permit request was received from the Kent Cultural Alliance to use Wilmer Park on Saturday, August 6, 2022 as the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra was coming to Kent County to perform. The permit requested police presence at the park, emptying trash before the event, extra trash cans for the event and pickup afterward, along with use of the electric at Wilmer Park and Fountain Park on August 6th. There will be a showing of Peter and the Wolf during the Farmers Market hours on the same day. Ms. Efland moved to approve the application request as submitted, was seconded by Mr. Medrano and carried unanimously.
Ms. McCann stated that there was a permit request from the Kent County Chamber of Commerce to host a Volunteer Fair on Saturday, September 17, 2022 and read the permit into the record, which included street closures in addition to the normal Farmers Market closures. Mr. Herz moved to approve the Volunteer Fair for Saturday, September 17, 2022 with the understanding that the Chamber of Commerce will contact the Farmers Market Manager beforehand to discuss the coordination of the tables for the fair, was seconded by Ms. Efland and carried unanimously.
Mayor Foster stated that there was as request for a letter of support to the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority for a grant application for Eastern Shore Heritage, Inc., which will help offer tourism products such as new interpretive exhibits, oral histories, brochures, storyboards and other interpretive materials. Ms. Efland moved that Mayor Foster be authorized to sign the letter of support on behalf of Eastern Shore Heritage, Inc. to the Maryland Heritage Areas Authority, was seconded by Mr. Herz and carried unanimously.
Ms. Jane Jewell was present and stated that Music in the Park was put on hold during the pandemic, but she would like to schedule a short season for 2022 if the Council agreed. She said that the cost would be between $5,000 and $6,000. She said that they pass a hat at the concerts to help offset the costs, but it does not cover the costs entirely. Ms. Jewell stated that Mr. Clark had platforms that can be used in lieu of the stage. Ms. Jewell stated that the chair wagon would be welcome from the Town.
Mayor Foster stated that Music in the Park was not factored into the budget. Mr. Herz stated that it sounded like a little more work had to be done since no bands had been lined up to date. Ms. Jewell stated that if they can schedule a concert every other Saturday, beginning on July 9th it would match up perfectly with Legacy Day. She said that they could hold concerts on July 9 and 23, and then the BSO Concert was scheduled for August 6, and they would then have the band for Legacy Day on August 20th.
Mr. Herz moved to approve a budget of $3,000.00 for Music in the Park to be held on July 9, July 23 and August 20th, was seconded by Ms. Efland and carried unanimously.
Chief Dixon gave the police report for May 2022. He said that Tea Party was successful and there was great cooperation and communication among everyone involved. He said that there was a little bit of overtime that the Council would see in this report, but it was related to the special events at Tea Party. He said that he and Officer Linz do not collect overtime; they adjust their schedules.
Chief Dixon gave an overview of different outreach events he attended over the month of May.
Mr. Herz asked how the policy was working on take home cars. Chief Dixon stated that it was working well, and the police were only using the cars to and from work, not for leisure. He said that he thought cars were better taken care of a result of having the cars being taken home by officers.
Mr. Herz stated that he and Chief Dixon were still working on policies to help the homeless population during hazardous weather events and that Kent County Emergency Management was going to help them with policies that would trigger an event.
Mayor Foster asked for Ward reports.
Ms. Efland stated that the Washington Square shopping center sold to Afora Commercial. She said that Jamie Williams of Kent County Economic Development has reached out to them to see how they could help Afora Commercial attract new tenants to the area.
Ms. Efland stated that the contract for recycling was still being worked out, but pickup will resume, and every household will be picked up once every two (2) weeks. A schedule was pending.
Mr. Medrano stated that this past Saturday there was an event acknowledging Charlie Graves, who owned the Uptown Club. He said that this was tied into the Juneteenth celebration, and it was a nice memorial for the area, which was well received by the community.
Mr. Herz stated that letters of intent for the ARPA Task Force grant requests were due on June 30th.
Mr. Herz stated that Bill Webb will be giving a COVID presentation to the ARPA Task Force on June 28th. Mr. Herz stated that Johnnie Jones will also be presenting Ethics Training to the Committee at that meeting.
Mr. Herz stated that he was waiting on a date to hold a hurricane preparedness meeting and would update the Council when the date was formalized.
Mr. Herz stated that the Recreation Commission voted to approve “Sarah Derry” as the name of the new Wilmer Park Playground and said that they will attend the first meeting in July.
Mr. Herz stated that the “mosquito dunks” were now available at Town Hall. He said that that dunks were in lieu of the Town supporting the spraying of adulticides for mosquitoes.
There being no further business, Ms. Efland moved to adjourn the meeting at 6:45 p.m., was seconded by Mr. Herz and carried unanimously.
Submitted by: Approved by:
Jennifer McCann David Foster
Town Clerk Mayor