• 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 Meeting Minutes

February 8, 2016
The City Council met in regular session on Monday, February 8, 2016 in Council Chambers. A quorum being present, Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Those Commissioners in attendance were Commissioners Vickers, Sydnor, Cooke, Thomas, and Hanson. Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley asked for a moment of silence. Commissioner Hanson led in the Pledge of Allegiance.

Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley announced that she is retiring from the State of Maryland effective April 1, 2016. As a result of this retirement from the State of Maryland retirement system which is the same retirement system as the City of Cambridge, effective March 31, 2016, she must step down as Mayor for the City of Cambridge. Per the City of Cambridge Charter, Section 3-21A "Vacancies in Office of Mayor", as President of the City Council, Donald Sydnor will serve as Acting Mayor until the next City-wide general election on July 12, 2016.

Agenda

1. Council approve or amend agenda as presented.

A motion by Commissioner Hanson to approve the agenda was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and approved unanimously.
Consent Calendar
2. SUBJECT: Minutes for January 25, 2016 Council meeting
Recommendation: That Council approve as submitted.

3. SUBJECT: Request from Cambridge Main Street to hold Taste of Cambridge on the 500 Block of Poplar Street and the 400 Block of Race Street on Saturday, July 9, 2016 from 5:00 pm until 10:00 pm.
Recommendation: That Council approve subject request and grant a variance from the noise ordinance.

4. SUBJECT: Request from LaTesha Macer to hold an MS Walk starting and ending at the Refuge Temple of God on Saturday, May 21, 2016.
Recommendation: That Council approve subject request.

5. SUBJECT: Police Department Budget Amendment
Recommendation: That Council approve a budget amendment appropriating $2,746.75 into the General Fund and increasing the Police Department budget by the same amount for the purchase of tasers.

A motion by Commissioner Sydnor to approve the consent calendar (Items 2 through 5) was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and approved unanimously.

 

 

Ordinances - Introduction and First Reading

6. SUBJECT: First reading of Ordinance for text amendments to various sections of the UDC to be coordinated with the City of Cambridge's Building Code.
Recommendation: That Council introduce Ordinance No. 1065.

No action was taken. Ordinance was introduced.

7. SUBJECT: First reading of Ordinance to remove the on-site residency requirement for the property owner of small commercial businesses in the NC Zone Districts and require that these properties have property manager that is a resident of Dorchester County. (Sec 4.2.3 B.1.).
Recommendation: That Council introduce Ordinance No. 1066.

No action was taken. Ordinance was introduced.

8. SUBJECT: First reading of Ordinance for technical corrections to the UDC (a) to Remove Group Home as a conditional use in the OS Zone District within the Permitted Use Table #1 and the UDC text. (Sec. 4.2.3 A. 6.) and (b) make requirements for a Day Care Home within the Downtown/Waterfront Development District consistent with the requirements for a Day Care Home elsewhere in the City. (Section 4.4.4 B. add language similar to Section 4.2.3 A.5).
Recommendation: That Council introduce Ordinance 1067.

No action was taken. Ordinance was introduced.

9. SUBJECT: First reading of Ordinance to remove the monetary limitations for repairs and maintenance for non-conforming structures; provided these improvements do not increase the building's non-conformity. (Section 4.4.2 E.).
Recommendation: That Council introduce Ordinance 1068.

No action was taken. Ordinance was introduced.

10. SUBJECT: First reading of Ordinance to amend the Council regular legislative session time to 6:00 p.m. on the second and fourth Mondays, and to designate the third Monday of each month as the day for scheduling work sessions or public hearings.
Recommendation: That Council introduce Ordinance 1070.

No action was taken. Ordinance was introduced.

Ordinances - Second Reading and Adoption

11. SUBJECT: Ordinance No. 1069 Finding that a two-acre parcel of property is no longer needed for public use and terminating the City's right to use or improve said two-acre parcel of property located on the Cambridge Port Property (also known as Sailwinds Property) for a period of Thirty Years and Authorizing the Execution and Delivery of a Lease Agreement to Yacht Maintenance Company, Inc. and Approved Assigns, for a Period Not to Exceed Thirty Years.
Recommendation: That Council give subject ordinance a second reading and adopt ordinance.

Rob Collison suggested changing the language with regard to Section 3 stating that the Mayor is authorized to negotiate, execute, and deliver to Yacht Maintenance or its approved assignees, a lease for the property for a term of not more than 30 years subject to the review and approval of the City Council. The approved assignee is the Cambridge Shipyard Facility, Inc. (the contract purchaser).

A motion by Commissioner Cooke that Council adopt Ordinance 1069 subject to the change that Rob Collison just suggested was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and approved 4:1 with Commissioner Sydnor opposed.

A motion by Commissioner Thomas to hold a special regular meeting of the Council on Wednesday, February 17th starting at 6:00 pm for the purpose of the lease for Yacht Maintenance was seconded and approved 4:1 with Commissioner Sydnor opposed.


New Business

12. SUBJECT: Mid-Year Budget Review.
Recommendation: That Council receive subject report.

Ginger Heatwole said the report comprises all four funds, the adopted budget, the amended budget, and the actual revenue and expenses from July 1 through December 31, 2015. The expenses are summarized by division by salaries, operating, and capital projects. If you take grants out of the pictures, the general fund revenue as of December 31, 2015 is at 77 percent of the budgeted revenue. This is compared to 70 percent last year. All real estate taxes are billed at the end of the year. Projecting revenue for the rest of the year, we anticipate revenue to be over budget by $50,000 to $100,000. Looking at expenses (without grants) we are at about 50 percent which is comparable to last year. Overall we are looking at a good picture.

13. SUBJECT: Quarterly Financial Report (October 1 through December 31, 2016).
Recommendation: That Council receive subject report.

Ginger Heatwole said the quarterly report presents the adopted budget, amended budget, actual expenses year-to-date, as well as previous year information. A real estate tax collection by quarter shows what we have actually collected. We are on tract compared to the prior year. We are at about 80 percent of our collections.

14. SUBJECT: Public Works Budget Amendment
Recommendation: That Council approve a budget amendment appropriating $30,360.00 in grant money from the Maryland Smart Energy Communities (MSEC) to the General Fund and increasing the Public Safety Building budget by the same amount for installation of LED lighting in the Public Safety Building.

A motion by Commissioner Thomas that Council approve a budget amendment appropriating $30,360 in grant from the Maryland Smart Energy Communities to the General Fund was seconded by Commissioner Hanson and approved unanimously.

15. SUBJECT: Police Chief's Annual Report.
Recommendation: That Council receive subject report.

Chief Dvorak spent the year talking with his officers, government leaders, community leaders, clergy, and business owners. He saw we have a crime rate spurred by unemployment, poverty, and drug addiction. He also met with people who want to make this community the gleaming gem on the Eastern Shore that it should be. He let his officers do their work. They knew what needed to be done to ameliorate the issues that were keeping them from moving forward. He added some of his own experience and they gained momentum. They became more transparent. They renewed their commitment to community policing. Press releases and social media are being used to let the public know how hard the officers are working. Body worn cameras have been in use for a full year and have proven to be a valuable tool. A national recruitment process was started. Starting pay was restructured and is more competitive with the region's police departments. Cambridge was one of two cities in Maryland to be awarded the COPS grant. In the summer, the crime rate was down from last year. In October, November, and December we experienced numerous thefts, burglaries and robberies. Most of those crimes were solved thanks to help from the community, proactive police work and an aggressive follow-up by detectives. We still closed the year with an increase in crime. Part of the reason we saw the increase is because we are working harder. When we are proactive we discover crime and make arrests. In 2014, we had 240 drug arrests; in 2015, we had 386 arrests. This 64% increase is due to officers being proactive. Adult arrests have increased 13%. In two years, our juvenile arrests more than tripled. Our transparency in communication has caused more people to make reports of crime because they know we are doing something about it. Robbery has increased City-wide. Many have been cleared by arrest. Of the 37 robberies this year, seven were at business. CPD responded to 158 calls for service at Walmart last year; 137 of them were thefts. Walmart accounts for 21% of all the thefts in the City. He met with management to try to be proactive but they cannot do anything to work with CPD unless their home office gives them permission. This was a year of analysis and experimentation. What they learned in the relationship they built will pay dividends in the future. They are beginning 2016 with a department reorganization, improved morale and retention, and a clear vision that is guided by the President's task force on 21st century policy. We need to break the cycle of violence and stop crime and we will accomplish this with public support and partnership. We need people to be mentors, people to clean up our neighborhoods, and people to be observant and report crime immediately. We need that partnership to make Cambridge safer.

A motion by Commissioner Hanson to accept the report was seconded by Commissioner Thomas and approved unanimously.


16. SUBJECT: Repairs to the Empowerment Center.
Recommendation: Hear a report from staff on needed repairs to the city building located at 615B Pine Street, and leased to the Pine Street Committee for the Empowerment Center.

A motion by Commissioner Sydnor that Mr. Hanson turn over the information to the City Manager and that the Finance Committee look at this information beginning this Thursday was seconded by Commissioner Thomas. The motion passed unanimously.

17. SUBJECT: Chesapeake & Atlantic Coastal Bays Trust Fund Grant Application.
Recommendation: That Council approves submission of a grant application to Maryland's Chesapeake & Atlantic Coastal Bays Trust Fund in the amount of $700,000.00 for improvements to Cedar Street from Dorchester Avenue to Race Streets.

A motion by Commissioner Sydnor that Council approves submission of the grant application to Maryland's Chesapeake & Atlantic Coastal Bays Trust Fund in the amount of $700,000.00 for improvements to Cedar Street from Dorchester Avenue to Race Street or wherever else it can go was seconded by Commissioner Hanson. The motion passed 3:2 with Commissioners Vickers and Cooke opposed.

18. SUBJECT: 2016 Chesapeake and Coastal Service Grant Program Application.
Recommendation: That the Council approve submission of a grant application to the Chesapeake and Coastal Service program as a part of Maryland's Community Resiliency Grant arm of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources in the amount of $40,000 for studies, designs, and practices addressing potential sea rise impacts on city infrastructure.

A motion by Commissioner Thomas to approve submission of a grant application to the Chesapeake and Coastal Service program as a part of Maryland's Community Resiliency Grant arm of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources in the amount of $40,000 for studies, designs, and practices addressing potential sea rise impacts on city infrastructure was seconded by Commissioner Hanson. The motion passed 4:1 with Commissioner Vickers opposed because it does not address historic High Street.

Committee Reports

19. Finance Committee

The Committee addressed two items at the January 14th meeting. The first was a proposed software application to use in the recruitment of police officers. It expands our area of search. The second area of consideration was the review of the proposed budget schedule.

A motion by Commissioner Hanson to accept the Finance Committee report for January 14th was seconded by Commissioner Vickers and approved unanimously.

The Committee met on January 27th and discussed the Oak Hill annexation, the draft mid-year analysis and six month summary, constant yield and taxes over the last five years, the proposed reorganization of the City dispatchers consolidating with the County 9-1-1, going out to bid for audit services and banking services, and presented a final budget schedule.

A motion by Commissioner Hanson to accept the Finance Committee report for January 27th was seconded by Commissioner Sydnor and approved unanimously.

20. Police Board

The Police Board met on January 27th. The Chief talked about budget goals for the upcoming year and department reorganization. Meeting minutes will be available for the public.

A motion by Commissioner Thomas to accept the Police Board report was seconded by Commissioner Sydnor and approved unanimously.

Notices

21. SUBJECT: Notice of City Council Goals Work Session on Friday, February 12 (5:00 pm to 9:00 pm) and Saturday, February 13 (9:00 am until noon) at the Public Safety Building.

This meeting will be rescheduled.


22. SUBJECT: Notice of City Council Work Session on Sailwinds Development RFP on Wednesday, February 17 immediately following the special meeting which begins at 6:00 pm in City Council Chambers.

Public comment will be taken at the end of the work session.


A motion by Commissioner Sydnor to adjourn the meeting was seconded and approved unanimously.

With no further business, Mayor Victoria Jackson-Stanley adjourned the meeting at 8:06 p.m. I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and accurate account of the Council meeting Monday, February 8, 2016, insofar as I personally am aware.



Victoria Jackson-Stanley
Mayor