• 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

February 10, 2003
 

The City Council met in regular session on Monday, February 10, 2003 Council Chambers.  A quorum being present, Mayor Cleveland L. Rippons called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. Those Commissioners in attendance were Commissioners Bohlen, Watkins, Weldon, Atkinson and Travers.

Ed Kinnamon led in the Lord's Prayer.  Commissioner Atkinson led in the Pledge of Allegiance.  Commissioner Travers made a motion to approve the minutes of the January 27, 2003 Council meeting as distributed.  Commissioner Weldon seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.   

COMMITTEE REPORTS

Street Lighting-Commissioner Bohlen reported that the residents of 403 Talbot Avenue requested additional street lighting.  The Committee found a need for additional lighting.  They will ask the power company to move the lights further down the street so the placement of the lights would remain basically every other pole and still accomplish this.  David Pritchett has scheduled a meeting with Conectiv.  Commissioner Bohlen will report at the meeting on February 24.

Planning and Zoning-Commissioner Watkins reported that the Planning Commission met on February 4th.  Because the Council did not have sufficient time to review the meeting minutes, he would like to make his report on February 24.  However, he would like to report on the PWCD text change request because there is a public hearing tonight on this topic.  The Planning Commission voted unanimously to make an unfavorable recommendation to increase the density from 20 to 24 units per acre. 

PUBLIC HEARING

A Text change to the PWCD Density Requirements (to amend the density require­ments within the PWCD district from 20 units per acre to 24 units per acre and to add the requirement of an impact)-Rob Collison reported that advertisement of tonight's public hearing was published in the Daily Banner on January 24 and January 31, 2003.  He noted that a letter was sent to the Planning and Zoning Commission by B. Duane Parker dated January 23, 2003 in support of the proposed amendment. 

Lynn Thomas reported that the Planning Commission recommended forwarding an unfavorable recommendation for the proposed amendment.  According to the meeting minutes, the recommendation was based on two aspects.  One was comparing densities in communities nearby; they felt there was nothing in that neighborhood.  The highest density was in Easton at 20 units per acre.  The other rationale they looked at was the history of variance requests. They found that there were no variances granted from the previous density so they felt this should be taken into consideration as a sign that there wasn't a problem with the current maximum permitted density.  In answer to a question by Mayor Rippons about the size of Easton's PWCD, Lynn Thomas said Easton does not have waterfront.  Mayor Rippons asked how they could compare the waterfront of Cambridge to Easton; they should be comparing like sources.  David Pritchett said it was a comparison of similar type zoning.  Commissioner Bohlen said the report states that Annapolis has stipulated 1 dwelling unit per 3600 square feet.  Commissioner Weldon said this is almost half of what is being requested. 

Duane Parker, an attorney on behalf of Palisades, LLC who are the owners of the Point property on Commerce Street, spoke in favor of the text amendment with the understanding that the impact fees assessed would be $1200 per unit.  Their intent is to develop the property with a high-end project as submitted to the Council. 

Jane Devlin spoke representing West End Citizens Association (WECA).  They are concerned with the issues affecting the entire City and especially the West End section of Cambridge.  WECA strongly opposes the amendment.  The PWCD limits the total residential units to 800.  It is stated in the PWDC document that  granting an exemption from critical areas is based on conformance to this limit.  There are several other properties located within the PWCD that may become available for development.  By amending the density requirement to 24 units per acre, options would be reduced for future development of other properties along the Creek.  It is public record that the City presently has a proposal from a developer that would necessitate an increase in density for the scope of his project to be within Code.  This developer has already appeared before the Board of Zoning Appeals for a variance and has been denied.  They feel that Cambridge's development process should be driven by the vision of the City planners and the community-not by the developers. 

Joe Brooks, J. M. Clayton Company, feels 20 units is enough.  He is not for the text amendment. 

Marge Hull said she would hope that the Council would put first the benefit and the thoughts of the people who elected them.  It is obvious that the builder is dangling dollars in front of them.  Foolish development at this stage may lose them many more dollars than are being dangled at the moment.  She has attended Planning and Zoning meetings and the Board of Appeals meetings.  Without question, every response with the exception of the builder was against increasing the density from 20 to 24 units.  It was shifted to a text amendment when it failed on its own purposes.  They appeal was denied basically because the one reason for an appeal is hardship.  Based on the fact that it was unanimous by the Planning and Zoning Commission to be against this and the fact that the majority of the people in this area have opposed this, she requested that Council follow the 99.9 percent of people that are against this text amendment.

David Tomey asked who requested the text amendment.  Rob Collison said he believed Commissioner Atkinson made a motion for the text amendment.  He does not believe it was in response to a letter from the developer.  It had gone to the Board of Zoning Appeals for a variance because they were seeking 60+ units.  The text amendment is an alternative to amending the zoning text for the City for any project within the PWCD.  David Tomey said he is opposed to it.  He has been very active in the PWCD since 1984 when it was enacted.  The taxpayers paid dearly to have the program set up.  If the master plan needs to be revisited and reassessed, he feels there is a better way to do it than arbitrarily spot zoning and increasing the density for one or two selected pieces of property. 

Wayne Warner said people are coming to this area looking for space because they are leaving dense areas for the all the obvious reasons.  Once the open spaces are gone, they are gone forever.  Cambridge has a few jewels left and it seems we are trying real hard to give those jewels away.  He sees greed as an overcoming factor in most of these projects.  He hopes Council will realize how monumental the problem is that they must decide on.  He trusts they will decide on the favor of a good life as opposed to the problems of overpopulation and density.

Marti Tomey said in the December 20th newspaper the Mayor was quoted as saying that currently we have about 3600 housing units and we are going through a major boom and he has on the books about 1400 in various stages that are going to be developed.  Considering that amount of development, we will see a major influx in the changes in Cambridge which will have a major impact on everyone.  Not knowing what the outcome of these changes are going to be and the stress it will put on the City for changes that are going to have to come to the infrastructure, she can't understand why we would suddenly change the zoning from 20 to 24 to increase the number of units in a particular area.  She thinks they need to slow down and not see how fast we can have development, but slow down and see what impact it will have on Cambridge as it stands right now.

In answer to a question by Mayor Rippons, David Pritchett said there are approximately 40 acres in the PWCD.  He estimates between 15 and 22 acres are undeveloped.

Jeff Hubbard said he supports the Planning Commission's unanimous vote against the increase in density.  It just encourages more condo developments and he would like to see more diversity on the Creek. 

Mayor Rippons asked Chief Malik could foresee a problem as far as traffic if they increased the density by 8 to 10 units.  Chief Malik said additional units of that minute amount really wouldn't have any negative impact on the traffic simply because people come and go at different times. 

Commissioner Weldon said he knows of only two projects before them that would benefit from this increase in density.  He asked where the importance of the increase sprang from.  Commissioner Atkinson said it sprang from a request from the developer.  He requested the public hearing to get more input from the community. 

Commissioner Bohlen said as elected officials it is their responsibility to tell people what they can and cannot do with their property and they have to look out for the interests of our citizens and the people who elected them. 

Mayor Rippons closed the public hearing.   He asked Council if they wished to take a vote at this time.  Commissioner Atkinson made a motion to discuss it at the next meeting.  Commissioner Travers seconded the motion.  The motion was passed 3:2 with Commissioners Bohlen and Weldon opposed.  Mayor Rippons said the matter will be brought up on February 24.

Presentation and Recommendation for Impact Fees for All New Construction and Moratorium on Out-of-City Services-Mayor Rippons said before they consider a moratorium, they received a request from the County that the City and County meet before any public input is received.  Council agreed to this request.

Mayor Rippons said Ed Donahue, a consultant, will discuss impact fees.  Ed Donahue said there was been a fair amount of discussion this evening about development and density of development.  At least two speakers mentioned the cost of infrastructure.  One of the things they are studying is the possibility of impact fees in the City.  Impact fees would not affect existing construction but would affect future construction.  An impact fee is a one time payment made by somebody who is building something new to pay for at least a portion of the capital costs of the infrastructure needed to serve the new development.  They tried to define what it costs the City to build infrastructure for a new development.  They took the actual historical costs where they existed and used engineering estimates where there is a lack of historical records.  They identified five different types of infrastructure that the City builds and estimated what it costs for enough infrastructure to support a single family dwelling.  The two obvious ones are water and sewer.  It costs the City about $1500 to build enough capacity in the water system to serve a single family dwelling unit and $2800 to build enough capacity in the sewer system for the same dwelling.  Right now the City has fees in place that are significantly lower.  The Council needs to determine what portion of the fees should be paid for by developer.  It costs about $2000 per dwelling unit to build streets and roads.   The City has made an investment of about $200 per dwelling unit for parks and recreation.  They are also contemplating a major investment for public safety in the form of a new public safety building.  Based on the number of dwelling units in the City and potentially in the City based on zoning, the cost per equivalent dwelling unit is about $2250 for public safety.  Adding all these numbers together, the City is making close to a $10,000 investment in infrastructure for every single family home.  Most of this is paid from general revenues as opposed to recovering it out of impact fees.  It is a policy decision for elected officials to decide what portion they should recover through impact fees and what portion is a general benefit.

He gave examples from other municipalities in the state.  In Harford County the fee for water and sewer is almost $12,000; in Frederick County it is $8,800; in Anne Arundel County it is about $6,000.  Other counties have other fees.  They have to review the numbers before they make any formal recommendation to the City.  He should have a draft report for them by the end of the month.   Commissioner Weldon asked if $1,200 for an impact fee would be sparsely inadequate.  Mr. Donahue said the City doesn't get anything right now but $1,200 doesn't cover the cost of the investment that the City is making and is continuing to make. 

Gage Thomas asked if there would be an equivalent for commercial buildings.  Mr. Donahue said you might do commercial units on a square footage or an acreage basis. 

Mr. Donahue said there are no profits involved.  It is strictly the capital cost of design and construction divided by the amount of capacity that is produced.  There are legal restrictions for what you can do with the money.  You can't dump it into the general fund.  It must be used to either retire debt or pay for capital costs.  It can't be used for day-to-day operating costs.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

Discuss Projects Being Submitted to the Department of Housing and Community Development by Schuster Properties, Inc.; Delaware Valley Development Company; and Ingerman Group-Commissioner Atkinson asked if Council reviewed the Glenburn Village project a few years ago.  Commissioner Bohlen said it was the same location with similar financing but a far different concept and approach and nearly twice the density that this developer is proposing. 

Brad Ingerman said their proposed project would serve 77 predominately families with incomes typically ranging from 40 to 60 percent of the medium income for the county.  Those households can be anywhere from 1 to 4 or 5 individuals.  The housing is geared to lower-middle-income people.

J. T. Triandafilou, Schuster Group, said their project is a 30-unit elderly community planned for the land next to Delmarva Community Services (DCS).  They will have a joint partnership where residents can use the services provided by DCS.

Brad Brosseit, Delaware Valley Development Company, said their proposal is Cambridge Club Apartments which would be 76 family general occupancy apartments that would be on the south side of town on Woods Road.  It would be workforce housing.  They have been working with the City for the last 1½ years and went through a rezoning procedure about 9 months ago. 

Mayor Rippons said the Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) has tax credits which they can extend to development projects each year.  There are certain criteria that they ask the developers to come up with. In the round of funding there is a maximum of 345 points that any developer can accumulate.  The municipality from which the applications are originating is given 20 points.  It is not allocated by the municipality.   If they just send a letters of support, it will represent that all three entities are equal.  DHCD does allow, if it is at the City's conception, that perhaps one of the projects meets an inherent need of the community more than the other two.  The City can commit to a priority listing.  The number one priority would get the entire 20 points.  Somebody who is second might get 15 points.  For every dollar that is available this round, there are seven dollars worth of requests.  The applications are due March 3, 2003.

Commissioner Weldon made a motion to provide a letter of support for all three projects on equal footing.  Commissioner Travers seconded the motion.  Commissioner Atkinson said he personally thinks Council should prioritize with the senior citizens being the number one priority.  Commissioner Travers agreed.  Commissioner Weldon said the reason he believes the other two are on equal footing with the senior project, is that when we have workforce housing for the jobs we create in our industrial parks,  public sector, and at the Hyatt, the City benefits more if the people live in Dorchester County and the City of Cambridge.  Otherwise, people earn money here and their income tax goes to other counties.  He agrees that the senior project is very important because we have a critical need for modest income housing for seniors.  He feels very strongly that we need to have all three presented on an equal footing.  The people he has spoken to at the State tell him that Cambridge is basically on a priority list unlike any other and that the chance of having all three projects approved is very good.  He doesn't see any reason to slight one over the other.  Commissioner Watkins said he would like to show priority to senior citizens.  They have labored here for years and should have priority.  Commissioner Travers said a lot of senior citizens pay a lot of income tax, State tax, and property tax.  He is for the senior citizens. 

Mayor Rippons asked each developer to state the contribution they are requesting from the City.  Not only does the State want to see that the City supports the project, but that it supports it with some type on inherent mechanism. 

Brad Ingerman, Ingerman Group, said they are asking for payment in lieu of taxes. They anticipate that based on evaluating the project on its income, the City component to taxes would be in the low $200 per unit range based on the income of the project.  They would like the PILOT to reflect the income method of looking at the project.  Mayor Rippons said based on the construction cost in excess of $38,000, they are asking the Assessment Office to evaluate it on income basis which will bring the $38,000 down to $17,000. This would be for a period of 15 to 17 years.  They are asking for $20,000 a year for 17 years.   Mr. Ingerman said he has been a consultant to these types of project in Maryland for 8 years.  He feels there is a misperception on what is needed here.  There are two separate issues.  One is a threshold issue.  For threshold, any project that is submitted needs the support of the local body.  The State does not ask that the body rate any projects coming from the municipality. It is simply a matter of "do you support this project in your community?".  If no, the State doesn't spend 5 minutes reviewing the application.  That is the support that all three developers are requesting.  The point system is totally different.  They are all in a Community Legacy area so they will all get 15 points.  There is a separate issue of whether or not they are in a qualified census track.  If so, they would get another 5 points.  The only thing that is incumbent upon the Council to do tonight is to decide if they want these projects to be reviewed by the State.  Mayor Rippons said that is not what Yvonne from DHCD said. 

J. T. Triandafilou said the Schuster Group is asking for a tax deferral program of 10 percent deferred over 10 years.  In the 11th year continuing to the 20th year the project will pay an additional income tax recouping everything within the 20 year period.   Mayor Rippons said they are also asking the Assessment Office for the income methodology which would be the same reduction that the other developer is asking for.   Instead of a full 100 percent which they should pay, they will pay 10 percent the first year on out to 100 percent and then to 110 percent.

Brad Brosseit said Delaware Valley Development Company is asking for 50 percent reduction in the water connection fees which would be from the current $350 to $175 per unit.  This represents a total one-time contribution of $13,300.  They are not asking for a reduction in taxes.  While he feels there is a need for all the projects, it is extremely unlikely, if not next to impossible in his opinion, that the State would fund more than one of the jobs in any particular funding cycle.  His partner spoke to Yvonne Johnson and she did reiterate that the letter of support is a threshold issue if the City does decide to support and issue letters of support to each of the three jobs.  After that it would be largely just left to the State's ranking process.  He estimates their tax burden would be estimated somewhere in the $45,000 to $50,000 a year range. 

Rob Collison said they heard earlier about the proposed recommendations by Mr. Donahue on impact fees.  He asked if each project would still proceed if there is an impact fee implemented prior to their construction commencing. 

Brad Ingerman said they are proposing to pay for the road extension of Glenburn down to what is currently the paper road Cosby, building the paper road Cosby along the length of their property and then circling back and bringing water and sewer but also paying up to $2000 a unit in impact fees.  This is built into their assumptions from the beginning.    J. T. Triandafilou said they acquired a number not as high as $10, 000 or $15,000 as the gentleman said earlier, but it is upwards of $5,000.  Brad Brosseit said they are willing to pay whatever impact fees are in effect at the time.

Commissioner Weldon said even with abatements they would be collecting considerably more in taxes than they are collecting now on vacant parcels.

Mayor Rippons said the motion is to move forward with a letter of support for all projects on an equal basis with no priority.  The motion passed 3:2 with Commissioners Atkinson and Watkins opposed. 

Mayor Rippons asked Council if they are amenable to giving all three developers what they have requested.  Resolutions will be prepared for the next meeting.

Council To Consider New Growth Allocation for Jenkins Creek-Rob Collision said this was first presented to Council a month ago and referred back to the Planning and Zoning Commission.  From the report that Commissioner Watkins presented, the Commission made a unanimous vote to give an unfavorable recommendation for granting the growth allocation.  The request by the property owners has been to reallocate if from limited development area to intense development area because a lot of the property owners are exceeding their committed impervious surface allocation.  If Council must hold a public hearing if they wish to vote in favor of the change.  Commissioner Weldon made a motion to open the public hearing process.  Commissioner Bohlen seconded the motion.  The motion was passed 4:1 with Commissioners Atkinson, Bohlen, Travers, and Weldon for the motion and Commissioner Watkins opposed.

Status Report on Project Proposed by Neighborhood Housing Renewal Company for City Property on Leonard Lane-Commissioner Atkinson said we are experiencing a growth in Cambridge.  The Department of the Public Works is jammed.  He would like to hold off to see if we don't need it for the expansion of the services for public works.   Mayor Rippons said unless a member of Council wants to move this to a vote to support this issue, he believes the City will send a letter indicating that at this time it is not appropriate to move forward with this proposed project.

Consideration of Revised MOU for Deep Harbor-Mayor Rippons said in April 2002 the City entered into an MOU with Deep Harbour.  As they move forward with other contemplations regarding several issues, there became a need for a revised MOU.  Mr. McAllister provided a revised for MOU.  Commissioner Weldon said given the timeframe that they had to look at this MOU, he would ask Mr. Collison to reconcile it with his recommendations before Council takes action. 

Sandy McAllister, representing Deep Harbor LLC, said the letter dated February 10, 2003, attempted to itemize all the issues raised by the City attorney last week.  They have had numerous discussions making sure all the issues have been addressed.  He would like to say that Deep Harbor does consider this hopefully its last presentation before Council.  He feels this is a housekeeping matter to adapt the MOU to be consistent with the master development plan which was unanimously approved over a month ago.  They want to make sure all the various issues ruled on in the master development plan were included.  The City's counsel had expressed the opinion that Paragraph 3 should clarify that the 40 spaces the developer has agreed to build for the City not be characterized as counting toward Deep Harbor's residential parking requirements.  They contemplate the parking spots being available for the farmers' market.  Paragraphs 6, 8, 9, and 10 were simply clarifying a legal matter that the City can only provide a quit claim deed relative to the easements and streets.  Paragraph 11 deals with the notice period on the slips.  Paragraph 13 deals with pre-paying tap-in fees.   The original Paragraph 17 dealing with the County's parking spaces by the ramp has been deleted.  They wanted to make sure that the developer's commitment to providing a site for a future farmers' market is memorialized.     They have clarified that Phase 1 will begin within 3 years.  If it doesn't start within 3 years, all of the commitments made by the City become void.  The riverwalk has to be completed within 5 years.  This makes the MOU compatible with the master development plan.

Rob Collison said under Paragraph 11 discusses the 99­‑year slip lease for Trenton Street.  It is payable in the amount of $18,000 per year for 10 years which represents $180,000 for the 99 year lease period.

Rob Collison said the revisions address the concerns that he had.  Commissioner Weldon asked if the developer would be willing to hold out 10,000 sq.ft. to be retained by the City at a site to be determined for the farmers' market so the City can qualify for funding under certain grant programs.   Sandy McAllister said because of their density restrictions they were a little reluctant at this point to commit to conveyance to the City and then find that they couldn't utilize that acreage for the density because it is a little tight.   The developer is absolutely committed to working with the City.  Commissioner Weldon suggested a long-term lease to the City. 

Commissioner Atkinson made a motion to approve the revised MOU for the Deep Harbor project.  Commissioner Weldon seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

NEW BUSINESS

Place Position of City Planner/Grants Administrator on the Inactive List-Commissioner Watkins made a motion to place the position on the inactive list.  Commissioner Bohlen seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

Delete Department of Planning & Zoning and Create a New Planning and Zoning Division Under the Department of Public Works-Commissioner Watkins made a motion to delete Department of Planning & Zoning and create a new Planning and Zoning Division under the Department of Public Works.  Commissioner Travers seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously. 

Revise Several Job Classifications for the New Planning and Zoning Division-Commissioner Weldon made a motion to approve the new job classifications.  Commissioner Travers seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

Request from Dorchester County Recreations and Parks to Hold Their Annual Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, April 12, 2003 at 11:00 am at Great Marsh Park-Commissioner Travers made a motion to approve the request.  Commissioner Weldon seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

Request from First Baptist Church to Use Long Wharf for Sunday Nights in August (August 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31) from 5:00 pm through 8:30 pm for Gospel Concerts-Commissioner Travers made a motion to approve the request.  Commissioner Watkins seconded the motion.  Commissioner Weldon added they should include a variance from the noise ordinance for the stated dates and hours.  The motion was passed unanimously. 

Request from Robert Vigorito to Use Great Marsh Park on June 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 for the Hawaii Ironman Triathlon World Championship Qualifier Race-Commissioner Bohlen made a motion to grant the request.  Commissioner Weldon seconded the motion.  David Pritchett said this is a very large event and there are very many issues with it that come up each year.  Last year they amplified.  He asked if Mr. Collison could draw up some type of agreement outlining responsibilities.  Mayor Rippons asked David Pritchett and Chief Malik to get together to indicate their interests.  He asked for an amended motion stipulating to approval of the request pending the contemplation and acceptance of conditions relayed by the City.  Commissioner Bohlen accepted the amended motion.  Commissioner Weldon seconded the revised motion.   Commissioner Weldon suggested that Mr. Donahue look at a fee structure for large events.  Commissioner Bohlen would like a timeline outlining which activities are planned for each day.  The motion passed unanimously.

Mayor Rippons To Make Appointment to Housing Board of Review-Mayor Rippons recommended appointing Willard Schuyler to the Housing Board of Review.  Commissioner Travers made a motion to support this recommendation.  Commissioner Watkins seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously. 

Resubmission of Revised Annexation Resolution for Route 50/Bucktown Road Properties-Rob Collison introduced a revised annexation resolution.  Some additional property owners along Bucktown Road requested annexation.  It would run from Maryland Route 16 where the Exxon Station is located eastward along Route 50 up to Bucktown Road and then down Bucktown Road to the north side of South Road and then back to the dividing line between the Gabriel parcel and the Lapidus parcel.  The City will proceed with a public hearing in late March.

Approve Resolution for Submission of Main Street Application-Commissioner Weldon made a motion to submit the resolution.  Commissioner Bohlen seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

Request To Go To Bid for Bayly Road Improvements-The City received a CDBG grant of $517,000 to do these much needed improvements.  They will be installing culvert, removing the ditch completely, putting shoulders in, and widening the road.  Commissioner Atkinson made a motion to go to bid.  Commissioner Watkins seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously. 

First Reading of Ordinance to Amend Section 18-12 Concerning Extension of Water Services Outside City Limits-Rob Collison said this ordinance would clarify an issue as to the extension of services outside the City of Cambridge.  The extension would be with the permission of the Commissioners of Cambridge.  There was an inconsistency about MUC granting permission if there was no extension of actual lines. 

Approve PO 134 Old Dominion Brush for a Self-Contained Leaf Collector ($21,895)-Commissioners Bohlen made a motion to approve the purchase order.  Commissioner Watkins seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

Approve PO 2637 Eastern Bullet for Ammunition ($2,881)-Chief Malik said this ammunition is for training purposes.  Commissioners Watkins made a motion to approve the purchase order.  Commissioner Weldon seconded the motion.  The motion was passed unanimously.

ADDITIONAL ITEMS

Chief Malik met with Mr. McCoy at the proposed police substation on the corner of Choptank and Travers.  It should ready by the spring. 

Mayor Rippons said they met last week with the architect for the new public safety building.  Drawings of the proposed building are in the Mayor's office if anyone wants to look at them.  There will be some slight modifications.

Mayor Rippons welcomed City Planner, Lynn Thomas.

Ed Kinnamon said in September, Council was requested to approve a tax abatement for the Mushroom Canning Company.  They honored the request but did not stipulate a date when it would become effective.  Mr. Kinnamon recommended it become effective January 1, 2003.   They have requested it become effective July 1, 2002.  Rob Collision said it has been a policy not to abate past years.  Rob Collison and Ed Kinnamon will review this for further discussion on February 24, 2003.

Commissioner Travers congratulated David Pritchett on an excellent job on snow removal. 

Commissioner Atkinson said the fueling station for boats is closed permanently.  He is concerned because you cannot gas a boat in Cambridge.  He thinks it is important that Council determine as soon as possible a site for a fueling station for boats in Cambridge.  The boaters can be channeled uptown.  He still thinks the best location is the original location as proposed by Mr. Pritchett.   He is not talking about a big restaurant complex; he is talking about a fueling station only.  Commissioner Atkinson made a motion that Mr. Pritchett go ahead and get some costs for a fueling station at Long Wharf based on the original concept that he presented.  Commissioner Weldon seconded the motion.  The motion was passed 4:1 with Commissioner Bohlen opposed.

Commissioner Atkinson heard there is a meeting at Sailwinds on February 24 concerning the future of Sailwinds.  Mayor Rippons said he is the one who requested the meeting.

Commissioner Weldon congratulated the group working on the Main Street application.  He requested that copies of the application be distributed to Council so they can have the details to answer questions. 

Commissioner Weldon said Council approved an ordinance regarding bicycles, etc. on the sidewalks.  They determined there was an area downtown that would be posted with signs.  He requested that the signs be posted by spring.

Commissioner Weldon thanked everyone for joining them at the Hyatt for the meeting regarding downtown revitalization.  The owner of the Fox building has already replaced the boards in the windows with some nice items. 

Commissioner Watkins thanked David Pritchett and the Department of Public Works for the fine job they did with removing the snow all over the City.  Commissioner Bohlen added that trash pick-up on that day was very much appreciated. 

Commissioner Bohlen said it became known to him last week that there is a bill (Senate Bill 203 / House Bill 341) before the General Assembly by Senator Stoltzfus to do away with the historic tax credits as a budget saving piece of legislation.  It would do a lot more harm than good.  There will be a Senate subcommittee hearing on it in Annapolis on Wednesday at 1:30 pm.  He asked the citizens to voice their concerns about it. 

Rob Collison reported that on February 19th at 7:00 pm the City will hold two public hearings.  The first is a presentation on the comprehensive rezoning plan.  There will be at least two other public hearing for comments on other dates.  The second public hearing is an amendment to the PWCD designation for the Richardson Museum at the corner of Hayward and Maryland Ave. 

Mayor Rippons said the City forwarded a request to the State that the Sailwinds property be returned back to the City.  On February 24th at 10:30 am a delegation from the State will be at Sailwinds.  In addition to our elected officials, MDOT, the Port Administration, and DBED representatives will be in attendance.  The meeting is by invitation.  He asked that if anyone had an interest in attending, that they contact him and he would contact Delegate Eckardt.

With no further business, Mayor Rippons adjourned this portion of the meeting at 9:12 p.m.  I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and accurate account of the Council meeting Monday, February 10, 2003, insofar as I personally am aware.

Edwin C. Kinnamon, Clerk & Treasurer