City Council Minutes
February 26, 2001
The City Council met in regular session on February 26, 2001, in City 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 Atkinson made a motion to approve the minutes of the February 12, 2001 Council meeting as distributed. Commissioner Watkins seconded the motion. The motion was passed unanimously.
Traffic & Safety-Mrs. William Waldis submitted a request to reconsider a previous decision regarding parking on East Appleby. The Committee recommended removing the "No Parking" signs on the south side of the street for six months. "No Parking Here to Corner" signs will be installed on both sides of the street approximately 200 feet from the corner of East Appleby. Commissioner Watkins made a motion to accept the Traffic & Safety Committee's recommendation. Commissioner Weldon seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Representatives from Dorchester County Department of Health to Accept Proclamation for National Nutrition Month (March)-The proclamation was read by Ed Kinnamon and then signed by Mayor Rippons. The citizens of Cambridge were challenged to try doing the "Five-A-Day Challenge" to eat 5 fruits and vegetables a day for a week.
Duane Parker To Discuss Issues for Final Approval of Parker Farm Annexation-Duane Parker explained that the developer has concluded that the 750-ft2 minimum on the town homes would not be economically feasible. They have amended it accordingly so the minimum square footage would be 1000 ft2 for the town homes. Apparently there is a great demand for the single family detached units. The number of town homes will be approximately 130. The annexation agreement has recited up to 225 units. Now the developer doesn't think it will exceed 210 units. Depending on the upsizing of the lots, it may be under 200 units. They have met with the Planning & Zoning Board and have received the preliminary approval.
Rob Collison reported that he has a copy of the County Commissioners' meeting minutes at which time they had approved the zoning to the R‑4. He stated unless the Council has any objections to the provisions as amended (a maximum of 210 residential units with a minimum square footage of 1000 ft2 for the town homes) a motion could be made to approve the annexation resolution with those amendments. Commissioner Atkinson made the motion. Commissioner Travers seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Tony Thomas To Request License to Sell Off-Premise Wine-Mr. Thomas, owner of Canvasback, has requested to sell off-premise wine. It will not be beer or liquor-just upscale wine (and cheese). He has already contacted Dorchester County. Rob Collison reported that this request is a text amendment to the City Code. Mr. Thomas will need to file an amendment to remove the 500‑ft prohibition for off-premise sale of alcohol within 500 feet of a church or school. It would go through the Planning & Zoning Commission for their recommendation. Commissioner Weldon made a motion to refer it to Planning & Zoning. Commissioner Atkinson seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Tony Thomas To Discuss St. Patrick's Day-Mr. Thomas has requested a green stripe down Race Street (from High Street to Muir Street) and a noise variance to play bagpipes outside from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm on Saturday, March 17, 2001. Dave Pritchett will investigate the green stripe. Mr. Thomas will purchase the material for the stripe. Commissioner Weldon made a motion to grant the noise variance for March 17th. Commissioner Bohlen seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Armond Hayward To Discuss Main Street Maryland Application-Commissioner Travers expressed concern about who would appoint the members of the committee. Armond Hayward stated that the initial appointments would be by the Steering Committee and the City Council. Commissioner Atkinson will vote against this application because he doesn't see any way it will pass in Crownsville with the number of individual business people in the main corridor of business who are opposed to the application because they feel they have been left out. He is also concerned about the lack of financial commitment from the businesses. Commissioner Watkins is in favor of the application and wants to move forward. Commissioner Bohlen agreed with Mr. Watkins. Commissioner Weldon has worked on the application for several years. He has already heard from some business people who have offered to commit some time to the program. The Committee is asking the City to make a commitment the first year to help underwrite the manager's salary. Commissioner Weldon made a motion to accept the resolution to submit the application to the State. Commissioner Watkins seconded it. Mayor Rippons asked if the County made a financial commitment, would that reduce the City's commitment. Mr. Hayward answered that yes, it would. The Committee will appear before the County on February 27, 2001 for their commitment. Mayor Rippons asked who would be making the in-kind donations. Mr. Hayward responded that they are trying to find office space and someone to pay the utilities; all of these donations are pretty much covered. Gage Thomas will supply the list to the Mayor. Mayor Rippons stated that he had access to the surveys over the weekend and far less than half of the surveys indicated that they would be willing to make a contribution. Mr. Hayward responded that some, but not all, were in place. He has about $5,000 in place from the business. They do not have the residential commitment yet. The Management Board will raise funds as part of their job. Mayor Rippons also questioned the number (19) of people on the board. Armond Hayward responded that at the workshop it was stated that 15 to 19 was the ideal board. The National Representative made the statement. Commissioner Weldon said the Council could amend the application. Mayor Rippons spoke to Cindy Stone and she said it wasn't recommended to have such a large board. Armond Hayward said they followed the application to a "T". A smaller executive committee would meet more frequently than the board. Mayor Rippons reported that in Easton the Main Street Manager does all kinds of economic development; not relegated just to the downtown area. The position would be a City-contracted position. Commissioner Weldon commented that the City could include a broader scope of duties. Rob Collison reviewed the changes with the Committee. The Mayor repeated the motion: A motion to approve the Main Street application with the amendments outlined by Mr. Collison. The motion passed 4:1 with Commissioner Atkinson opposed.
Decision on Supporting Main Street Maryland Application-This was incorporated in the above discussion.
Discuss Annual Fireworks Program (CPD)-The Cambridge Police Department would like direction on how much the City will spend on the fireworks. Ed Kinnamon reported that $15,000 is in the budget. Commissioner Atkinson made a motion to ask the County for $5,000. Commissioner Travers seconded it.
During the discussion Commissioner Weldon asked if they had ever used a barge for the fireworks. This would allow more space at Great Marsh Park. Chief Wroten reported that they have had some bad experiences using barges. The motion was passed unanimously.
Approval for Appraisal Services for Public Safety/Fire House Site and Building-Commissioner Atkinson made a motion to approve the appraisal services of Mr. Robert Greenlee of Easton for suggested properties for the public safety/fire house. Commissioner Weldon seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Introduction/First Reading of Two Ordinances to Amend M.U.C. Charges for Fire Hydrant Rental and Connection Services-Rob Collison referenced two sections of the City Code dealing with the out-of-town user surcharge that the City assesses. One is the rental of fire hydrants (Section 18-1) and the other is the connection fees (Section 18-7). Mr. Collison is recommending that the provisions simply reference the out-of-town surcharge as set forth in Section 18-5, rather than state a specific amount. This way, in the future, when the out-of-town water user surcharge is increased, these surcharges will automatically be increased.
Introduction of ASOP for Tax Abatement-This is an ASOP for the abatement of interest on personal property taxes that may be due from entities that are no longer is existence and have no assets to place a lien on. The City would consider a 50% abatement only on the interest if the full payment of all taxes and the remaining interest is made to the City within 30 days. Commissioner Travers made a motion to approve the ASOP. Commissioner Bohlen seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Approve Purchase Orders Over $2,500: PO 1697 (Davis Maintenance);PO 1698 (Enwood Structure, LLC); PO 1781 (Wor-Wic Community College); PO 1852 (Princess Royale); PO 1700 (Davis Maintenance); PO 1880 (Altec Industries, Inc.) Commissioner Travers made a motion to approve the above listed purchase orders. Commissioner Watkins seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Approve Budget Amendment (DPW) -Commissioner Atkinson made a motion to approve the budget amendment. Commissioner Weldon seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Rob Collison reported that the Council met in Closed Executive Session prior to the meeting to consider an acquisition of real property. No action was taken.
Commissioner Atkinson would like to have April as a clean-up month. This will be discussed at a later meeting.
Mr. Pritchett relayed that the Town of Hurlock would like to use the services of Cambridge's City Engineer and his assistant to handle the storm water management program for Hurlock. Mayor Rippons suggested that due to the workload that Mr. Hyde currently has for Cambridge, that it is not feasible to offer assistance at this time.
Commissioner Atkinson made a motion to amend property maintenance code to indicate that the enforcement dates for exterior painting be March 21 through October 31. Commissioner Travers seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Jim Michael requested permission to hire a certified consultant for issues pertaining to condemnation and demolition. This would be on an interim basis. Commissioner Weldon made a motion to move ahead with this process. Commissioner Watkins seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Jim Michael has received a request for a text amendment pertaining to setback requirements of lots with a targeted area in the City. Commissioner Atkinson made a motion to present this to Planning and Zoning. Commissioner Travers seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously. Rob Collison suggested that it simultaneously be referred to the Zoning Consultant. Commissioner Atkinson amended his motion to reflect this addition. Commissioner Travers seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Rob Collison received a request to close Great Marsh Parking Area for a brief period of time (not more than one-half hour) for a school science project. Waivers will be presented to the City concerning damage. Commissioner Bohlen made a motion to allow this project. Commissioner Watkins seconded it. The motion was passed unanimously.
Evelyn Townsend of the Harriet Tubman Organization announced that the General Assembly proclaimed Harriet Tubman Day as March 10 which has become a State holiday.
With no further business, Mayor Rippons adjourned this portion of the meeting at 8:34 p.m.
I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and accurate account of the Council meeting Monday, February 26, 2001, insofar as I personally am aware.
Edwin C. Kinnamon, Clerk & Treasurer