• City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
  • City of Cambridge Maryland
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City Council Minutes

January 12, 2009

Cambridge Maryland SealMINUTES

Council Meeting

January 12, 2009

 

 

The City Council met in regular session on Monday, January 12, 2009 in Council Chambers. A quorum being present, Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. Those Commissioners in attendance were Commissioners Knox, Sydnor, Stout, Thomas, and Hanson.

 

Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley asked for a moment of silence. Commissioner Hanson led in the Pledge of Allegiance. Commissioner Knox made a motion to approve the minutes of the December 22, 2008 Council meeting as distributed. Commissioner Sydnor seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

APPOINTMENTS

Dr. Barbara Viniar, President of Chesapeake College-Dr. Viniar said the Cambridge Center advisory board did a strategic plan a few years ago. They are already out of space in the Cambridge building. Her vision for the new center is that it will be able to accommodate more very-specific short-term job training skills and future-oriented workforce development training. The new center will have office space for people from the Workforce Investment Board, SBDC, and for their own continuing education and workforce staff and they will have enough classroom space to conduct the kinds of training and education that they think they need. She will meet with local business leaders to see what is needed. The new center will be the Chesapeake College Center for Education and Economic Development. They have narrowed their search to 3 sites. Right now they are focusing on the Blackwater site which could be ready to go. The designs are available so they could start as soon as they put together financing. They are looking at alternative sources. This will not be a community college capital project. They will have to look at non-traditional sources. It will also be contingent on selling the current center. They have somebody who is interested in it.

 

Joe Ross to Give Shore Health System Update-Shore Health System has been in existence since 1996. They became a part of the University of Maryland Medical System in 2006. The area they serve encompasses 5 counties. They are in the middle of an expansion and modernization of the emergency department in Cambridge. They have a capital plan to continue to upgrade the facility. Their strategic plan calls for expanding their medical offices. He spoke of their presence in other communities. They favor the site offered by the Talbot County Council for a regional medical center. Because they are in the very early stages, groundbreaking would not take place until at least 2012.

 

Gerry Boyle, Columbia Triathlon Association, to Clarify Requests for the Eagleman on Sunday, June 14th and the ChesapeakeMan on Saturday, September 26th-Gerry Boyle said he spoke to all the agencies who normally supply them with support. Commissioner Thomas made a motion to grant the Columbia Triathlon Association permission to hold the 2 events and the associated requests in their letter. Commissioner Stout seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

 

Allen Nelson, Cambridge Power Boat Regatta Association, to Request Permission to Have Exclusive Use of Great Marsh Park from July 24th through July 26th; a Noise Variance from Friday, July 24th through Sunday Evening, July 26th; and Permission to Close the Boat Ramp-Allen Nelson said they are requesting exclusive use of the park on specified days because the boats will be set in place on Friday. They are requesting the noise variance because they have a DJ on Friday and Sunday. The noise variance is also for the noise from the engines. The event will be the same as they have done in past years. Commissioner Knox made a motion to approve the request as submitted and included permission to sell alcohol provided they obtain the proper permits. Commissioner Hanson seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

 

 

 

 

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

Open Bids for Demolition of 610 Wells Street-Ed Kinnamon said the City received the following bids:

 

Dorchester Dumpin' (Cambridge).................................................. $4,200

Gateway Construction (Hartley, DE)............................................... $8,230

Wheatley Brothers (Cambridge)..................................................... $4,500

Kelly's Excavating (Cambridge)...................................................... $4,000

RS&J Excavation (Easton).............................................................. $7,000

Kimbrew Construction Co. (Pittsville, MD)..................................... $5,720

Holley Enterprises, Inc. (Wilmington).............................................. $9,249

Eastern Shore Demolition, LLC (Easton)...................................... $3,800

Gullion Construction (Hurlock)......................................................... $5,200

A2Z Environmental Group (Baltimore)............................................ $5,800

Rubble Bee Recycling LLC (Owings, MD)................................... $11,500

Site Maintenance (Bowie)............................................................. $17,000

Jerol Moore (Cambridge)................................................................ $4,575

Eastern Shore Paving (Mardella Springs)..................................... $4,500

Mike Davidson Excavating LLC (Goldsboro)................................ $5,450

BARCO Enterprises (White Marsh, MD)..................................... $13,590

 

Commissioner Thomas made a motion to refer the bids to the Department of Public Works for their review and recommendation. Commissioner Hanson seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

 

Review and Approve Revised MOU with Dorchester County (Technology Park Financing)-Rob Collison said at the last meeting there was an unresolved issue with regard to the water lines and any expansion or increase in capacity of those at the recommendation of the RFC Chief with regard to providing sufficient water supply for fire protection at the airport and the industrial park. He combined 3 MOUs (original plus 2 amendments). At the time of the creation of the first MOU, they were not sure which of the alternatives they would use. In talking with Mr. Johnson, it is Sewer Alternative 1 that has been designed and agreed upon as well as Water Alternative 1. They have not yet addressed the possible increase in line size for water. Steve Johnson said the water model was completed Friday and they are still reviewing the results of the tests. It appears that 'as designed' the project will provide the 1500 gal/min it was designed to do. However, RFC has said that they want 4000 gal/min for 4 hours. He has asked them to explain why they want that. There are various things that could be done to reduce the water flow requirement.

 

Commissioner Sydnor said there are 2 loans. The City is obligated for 1 loan for $1,718,896. The other part is still being negotiated with the County as to what they would like to do with it. Commissioner Sydnor said Council should approve the first loan. Then the City and County can negotiate on the second loan. Rob Collison said Council has already approved Loan 1. It was the original MOU that has been signed. Council could now re-confirm it. Loan 2 will be the difference between the actual cost and the $1,718,896. Commissioner Thomas asked if Council has identified the revenue source to repay the debt. Ed Kinnamon said it is totally up to what businesses go in the tech park and whatever taxes they would be paying. Ed Kinnamon said at this point there is nothing identified other than our coffers. Commissioner Thomas said he thinks it would be a concern that Council defer any encumbrance of the debt service until they know where the budget is going to be in 2010. Rob Collison said the County will not move forward until they know everything has been resolved for the entire package. Commissioner Sydnor made a motion to approve Loan 1 in the amount of $1,718,896 for the tech park and the City will be responsible for 24% of the loan debt. Commissioner Knox seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Traffic and Safety Committee Report-Commissioner Knox said the Committee met to discuss the following issues:

 

§ Request to add another street light on Camper Street-Camper Street is a short street and already has lights on 2 out of 3 poles plus a light on the corner of Park Lane. The Committee recommends disapproval.

 

§ Request for 2-hour parking signs along the 300 block of High Street (Spring to Locust)-This is a busy section of High Street with many active businesses. The Committee recommends approval.

 

§ Park Lane-One Way from High Street to Leonard Lane - This is a revised recommendation. Park Lane is currently one way from High Street to Hubert Street. Due to the lack of sidewalks, the Committee previously recommended approval of this request. County Parks and Recreation requested that the street remain two way between Willis Street and Leonard Lane to allow for tractor-trailers to access their facility from Leonard Lane. The Committee agrees with their request. The recommendation is modified to make Park Lane one way between High Street and Willis Street (going west) and two way between Willis Street and Leonard Lane.

 

Commissioner Thomas made a motion to approve the recommendations of the Traffic and Safety Committee. Commissioner Hanson seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

 

Approve Resolution to Apply for Funding Under the Maryland Neighborhood Conservation Initiative (NCI) Program-Lee Weldon provided Council a packet of information on the pending grant application. Dorchester County is the qualified jurisdiction to submit the application. Cambridge will be the primary recipient of the grant. All of the program activities are scheduled to take place within the City limits. The 18 properties that they are looking at to benefit from this program are clustered in the 970500 and 970600 Census tracks. The object of the program is to increase affordable workforce housing opportunities in neighborhoods most affected by foreclosure to maximize revitalization and stabilization in target conservation neighborhoods. This pocket of Cambridge qualifies as an area of high need in terms of foreclosure activity. They are requesting $950,000 from the State. The City will not be buying the houses. They will be setting up a financing mechanism so that their operating partners can make the purchase and then they will see the project through to completion. They are looking at homes that are relatively new. They anticipate being able to negotiate a purchase price from the foreclosure owner of between 5% and 15% discounted from the current appraisal. They will purchase the home; do the necessary rehabilitation work; and then put it back on the market in a price range that will be affordable to people who are earning between 50% and 120% of the area median income. Of this, 25% is targeted toward the 50% annual median income which would qualify certain organizations such as Habitat for Humanity and Visions America who focus on serving that public. Some of the funds can be used for the removal of blight. Partners will be formalized by a qualifying process. Commissioner Sydnor made a motion to support the NCI project in the amount of $950,000 and 2 members of Council would be on the selection and program committee. Commissioner Stout seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. Commissioners Stout and Sydnor offered to be on the committee.

 

Request from Dorchester County Public Schools to Waive All Permit Fees Associated With the New Dorchester Career & Technology Center-Rob Collison said there is a provision in the City's zoning code (adopted in 2003) which provides that the zoning code and requirements therein do not apply to the land, structures, or buildings owned by the Federal government, State of Maryland, Dorchester County Council, or Dorchester County Board of Education. It would be exempt from the fee schedules. Technically we do not have jurisdiction to inspect and issue the permits because they are not paying for them. Steve Johnson said in the past, the City has provided the inspection services for school projects within the City. He talked to the School District Representative today. They would really like the City's inspection services. The City would be providing them in the spirit of getting mutual benefit from the end product with no reimbursement. The cost of the services would be at least $8,000 (probably more). The permit fee would be about $130,000. His recommendation would be that impact fees do not apply. The County did not charge the City the excise tax for the Public Safety Building. The City waived the fees when Choptank Elementary School and Maces Lane were built. Steve Johnson said they would like to get a permit, at least as a courtesy, so we know what they are doing. They are not required to go before the Planning and Zoning Commission. Commissioner Sydnor said there are several check-offs, for instance the pipe size and connections requirement by RFC. Rob Collison said they may go directly to the State Fire Marshal. Rob Collison said the City should address to the County the need to try to extend sidewalks if there are any areas that lead to the school. The issue of damage to the roads from the heavy trucks should also be addressed. Commissioner Sydnor made a motion to have Mr. Johnson and Mr. Collison meet the Board of Education representatives to find some resolution to this situation. Commissioner Knox seconded the motion. Rob Collison clarified the motion that they can have full waiver and have the County do the inspections or they can have partial waiver and pay the City their true out-of-pocket expenses for the cost of the inspection and permitting. The motion passed unanimously.

 

Special Election for Ward 1 Commissioner-Mayor Stanley announced that at the last meeting, Commissioner Knox regrettably forwarded his resignation from the Council. Based on Charter Resolution CR-2006-01, she announced there is a vacancy in the Ward 1 seat. The City will hold a special election. Anyone interested in filing for candidacy has 15 days to file. Commissioner Thomas made a motion to authorize the City Attorney to declare a special election for Ward 1. Commissioner Hanson seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. Rob Collison said the election will be on Tuesday, February 24, 2009. If there are 2 or more candidates and 1 of them gets at least 50% of the votes, there will not be a run-off election. If there are more than 2 candidates and neither of them get more than 50%, there will be a run-off election on March 24, 2009. The candidate receiving the most votes will be sworn in at the next regularly-scheduled meeting. The location for the election will be announced at a later date. Ed Kinnamon said the League of Women Voters will have a forum on Wednesday, February 4, 2009. If any needs more information on the forum, they should contact Portia Johnson-Ennels.

 

ADDITIONAL ITEMS

 

Commissioner Thomas announced that the City held their first "325th Anniversary" meeting last Thursday. About 40 individuals representing many groups attended. They came up with a lot of great ideas. The big celebration will be in April in conjunction with other activities. He asked that if anyone had any ideas for a theme, logo, or catch phrase, to please let him know.

 

Commissioner Thomas announced that the 2020 waterfront charrette will be meeting at 4 different locations (Historical Society; Sojourner Douglass; Victoria Gardens; Hodes, Pessin & Katz) in the next few weeks. They will gather more input on the waterfront which will be incorporated into the comprehensive plan.

 

Chief Malik asked permission from Council to go to bid for the fireworks. The total cost of the project is $20,000. Commissioner Thomas made a motion to authorize Chief Malik to go to bid for fireworks. Commissioner Knox seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

 

Mayor Stanley said there will be a delegation of members of our community going to Annapolis on Wednesday to meet with Senator Colburn and other delegates to discuss the future of Sailwinds Park. Senator Colburn is very serious about working with the City about keeping Sailwinds Park available to the City. The lease ends June 30, 2009. They are taking active aggressive steps now to ensure that we have the facility for our future use.

 

The Financial Officers of the Council, Commissioners Thomas and Sydnor, met with Mayor Stanley and Ed Kinnamon to make some budget adjustments. They will be presented to Council at a future date.

 

Mayor Stanley said she met with representatives from the United States Census. They are encouraging everyone to participate in the census. This translates into money for our community. There will be job opportunities with the census lasting from 2 weeks to 2 years.

 

Wendell Foxwell reminded the Traffic and Safety Committee to look at restricting parking on one side of Glover Avenue. He suggested that the Christmas lights be taken down to save money on electricity. He also suggested that Cambridge be promoted more in local newspapers.

 

William Jackson said in a little more than 1 week, probably one of the most historic events in America will take place. Some residents of Cambridge feel they should celebrate this historic occasion. A diverse group of citizens have put together an inaugural rally in Cambridge so Cambridge is part of this great celebration. Spring Valley has been chosen as the rallying point. Their initial plans were to be at Spring Valley around 3:30 pm. Around 4:00 pm, they have some citizens who will sing and speak. They will then move from Spring Valley down High Street to Pine Street to Bethel Church where they will assemble in the sanctuary and have a prayer, singing, scripture readings, and speeches. They will then move to the fellowship hall where they will have a re-showing of this historic event. The theme for the rally is "Yes We Can, Yes We Did, But More Important, Yes We Will". The "Yes We Will" part will be the coming together of this community. If a lot of young people from the schools are allowed to be involved, they are asking permission to use the lot at the corner of Race and Cedar Streets which will decrease the march from there to the Church. If they use either lot, they will clean it up. Commissioner Sydnor made a motion to approve the rally, parade, and use of the City property on Race Street and a noise variance for January 20, 2009, the route and time to be determined at a later date. Commissioner Knox seconded the motion. Mr. Jackson clarified that if the children are out of school, they would start at 9:00 am and move to the church at 10:00 am. If not, they will start at Spring Valley at 3:30 pm and start the parade at 4:00 pm. The program is designed to be outside for 1 hour and the rest of the activities will take place inside the church. The motion passed unanimously.

 

The Council met in closed executive session at 5:00 pm to discuss personnel issues.

 

With no further business, Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley adjourned the meeting at 9:30 p.m. I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and accurate account of the Council meeting Monday, January 12, 2009, insofar as I personally am aware.

 

 

 

 

Edwin C. Kinnamon

Clerk & Treasurer