• 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 14, 2000
 

February 14, 2000

Cambridge, Md.

The City Council met in regular session at 7:00 p.m. with Mayor David J. Wooten presiding.

Those Commissioners in attendance were: Commissioners Vickers, Watkins, Saunders, Swafford and Rice.

Commissioner Watkins led in the Lord's Prayer.

Commissioner Watkins moved to approve the minutes of the February 7th Council meeting; seconded by Commissioner Swafford. Motion carried unanimously.

DECISION ON "WELCOME TO CAMBRIDGE" SIGN

With reference to previously submitted drawings and pictures of "welcome" signs from other communities, Commissioner Saunders asked Council if they are in agreement of having such a sign for Cambridge. If they are, she would like to have the City attorney research any legal issues that the City would face as far as placing the sign on Maryland Avenue at Sailwinds Amoco(as agreed to by the owner). She also would like the Department of Public Works to recommend the size of the sign "and the positioning of it." The design would come later if this was approved. Commissioner Saunders put her requests in the form of a motion and it was seconded by Commissioner Vickers. Motion carried unanimously.

OPEN - SPACE PROJECT AT GREAT MARSH

Commissioner Vickers indicated that he would like to see the City move forward with adding a new pavilion at Great Marsh Park due to the increase in events at the park. He put this in the form of a motion and it was seconded by Commissioner Swafford. Motion carried unanimously.

INTRODUCTION OF CHARTER AMENDMENT FOR SECTION 3-35 OF CITY CHARTER

Mr. Collison advised this refers to Section 3 - 35 entitled "Removals from office; cause, procedure" of the City Charter which was discussed last week. Tonight it would be formally introduced and then there is a publication requirement for four (4) weeks.

Commissioner Saunders moved to authorize the Mayor to sign the Resolution; seconded by Commissioner Watkins. Motion carried unanimously.

Commissioner Saunders then moved to amend the Charter Amendment; seconded by Commissioner Watkins. Motion carried unanimously.

HUMAN RELATIONS COMMITTEE TO PRESENT AWARD TO FORMER MEMBER

Commissioner Saunders advised that the award was to be presented to Ms. Judy Moody who was unable to attend due to a family emergency. She was asked by the Human Relations Chairman to let the Mayor and Commissioners see the award which was then passed on to Ms. Adams so Ms. Moody could pick it up at City Hall.

MAYOR TO SIGN PROCLAMATION FOR "MARCIA L . FUDGE DAY"

At the Mayor's request, Ms. Adams read aloud the Proclamation declaring March 4, 2000 as "Marcia L. Fudge Day". The Proclamation is in honor of Ms. Fudge, National President of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and all members who volunteer their valuable time, talents and resources so that this might be a better world.

Commissioner Watkins moved to authorize the Mayor to sign the Proclamation; seconded by Commissioner Vickers. Motion carried unanimously.

REQUEST FROM ATTORNEY PATTISON REGARDING TED BRAMBLE'S LIQUOR LICENSE APPLICATION

Mr. Collison suggested withdrawing the request tonight so that he can confer with Dale Price of the City's Zoning Department.

COUNCIL TO FORM DISABILITY ADVISORY COMMITTEE

Commissioner Saunders stated that after being involved at a very informative meeting with some State representatives, they suggested that the City form a Disability Advisory Committee. She indicated that this is being done throughout the United States and the City was not made aware of this until last week.

Commissioner Swafford made a motion to appoint Commissioner Saunders to help form the Disability Advisory Committee; seconded by Commissioner Watkins. Motion carried unanimously.

Commissioner Saunders said before any action is taken, she will bring everything back, in writing, to the Mayor and Council to have their advice and input.

REQUEST FROM PARKS AND RECREATION FOR PROGRAM OPEN SPACE PROJECTS FROM THE CITY FOR FY2000

Mr. Pritchett stated this is the same as what was discussed earlier this evening.

REQUEST FROM REVEREND BLACKMAN TO USE LONG WHARF FOR OUTDOOR GOSPEL CONCERTS

Commissioner Saunders made a motion that Reverend Blackman give the exact dates and time to Public Works and that they move forward with the request; seconded by Commissioner Vickers. Motion carried unanimously.

APPROVE BUDGET AMENDMENT FOR DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS

Commissioner Swafford made a motion to approve the Budget Amendment for D.P.W.; seconded by Commissioner Watkins. Motion carried unanimously.

APPROVE BUDGETED EXPENDITURES OVER $250

Commissioner Swafford made a motion to approve all budgeted expenditures over $250 "that are in our booklet"; seconded by Commissioner Watkins. Motion carried unanimously.

COMMENTS FROM CITY ATTORNEY

Mr. Collison referred to his memo regarding grievance procedures when a complaint is filed against a Department Head either by employees or by non-employees of the City. He stated that these types of complaints do not fall within the grievance procedures of the City's employee manual and asked Council if they should go before the Personnel Review Committee or directly to Council.

Commissioner Vickers feels complaints against Department Heads should come directly to Council and made a motion to do so. The motion was seconded by Commissioner Saunders who said that once a citizen lodges a complaint about a Department Head, "then we are bound to follow up... and make a disillusion of the situation one way or another." She then asked that Mr. Collison draw up specific policy. Motion carried unanimously.

Mr. Collison then submitted a Resolution adopting a procedure whereby there would be a 50a sewer charge rather than the 210 for accounts with a separate water line not connected to the sanitary system. This was requested by Council at the November 8, 1999 Council meeting and was to become effective January 1, 2000. Commissioner Saunders made a motion requesting that the Mayor sign the Resolution; seconded by Commissioner Watkins. Commissioner Saunders indicated that some businesses have been charged the full price and since this is effective January 1, 2000, they should receive a retroactive credit. Motion carried unanimously.

COMMENTS FROM FIRST WARD

Commissioner Vickers indicated that he has talked with a couple of the Commissioners about the possibility of a moratorium on building development "while we're in the midst of this complete overhaul of the zoning regulations." Between that and the Comprehensive Plan, he would like, with the help of the City attorney, to come up with some type of moratorium to stop building for about six or seven months and put his suggestion in the form of a motion. He then stated that he does not see any immediate problem with R-1 and R-2 "but we are being plagued somewhat with problems involving zoning above that number." Motion was seconded by Commissioner Saunders who verified that this would not relate to applications that have already been submitted and approved by Public Works and this Council. Anything that has not been submitted and approved, even if it's under discussion, would fall under the moratorium.

Mr. Collison advised that this would fall under an amendment or modification to the City's Zoning Code and would require a public hearing with at least 14 days advance notice. If approved after the public hearing, it takes effect 10 days following the approval. Motion carried 4 to 1 with Commissioner Rice opposing.

Commissioner Saunders then made a motion to have the City attorney advertise immediately for the public hearing; seconded by Commissioner Vickers. Motion carried unanimously.

COMMENTS FROM THIRD WARD

Commissioner Saunders referenced a letter regarding the 911 Center that was received from the County Commissioners. The City is considering having the 911 Center pass the calls through the Police Department and she asked Council's permission to check with other towns to see how they handle theirs and the legalities involved.

Another communication was received from the County Commissioners regarding a meeting to discuss sewer extension to the Cambridge-Dorchester Airport. The Mayor feels that he and the Council should meet with them to attempt a resolution.

Commissioner Rice indicated having a meeting for discussion is not a problem... "I still think... if they want the City's services, they should be annexed into the City." Inasmuch as the County would pay zero taxes, he can't foresee it being a financial burden on them although it would allow other annexations that would help the City and its taxpayers.

Commissioner Swafford made a motion to send a letter to the County stipulating that the majority of the Council has indicated they that prefer to talk about annexation before a meeting is scheduled; seconded by Commissioner Rice. Motion carried unanimously.

Commissioner Saunders then mentioned liability concerns regarding secondary employment. She asked that Mr. Collison follow up on this.

An announcement was then made by Commissioner Saunders about a CDA meeting to be held at 6:00 p.m. on February 29th in Council Chambers. The meeting is with regards to CDA funding for housing development and is open to the public.

COMMENTS FROM FOURTH WARD

Commissioner Swafford advised that there was a closed Executive Meeting earlier this evening with regards to a personnel matter.

He then addressed a building permit application for an addition to the existing Bank of the Eastern Shore with cost of improvements in the amount of $155,000. A motion was then made by Commissioner Swafford to approve the building permit; seconded by Commissioner Rice. Motion carried unanimously.

A letter from Wise Oil & Fuel was then addressed regarding eight rubbish notices that Mr. Wise received. He has no problem complying with the notices as soon as the weather breaks. Commissioner Swafford then made a motion that the letter be forwarded to the Housing Department for written comments from their Department Head. Motion was seconded by Commissioner Vickers and it carried unanimously.

COMMENTS FROM FIFTH WARD

Commissioner Rice asked for permission to allow him to approach the Police Department for assistance from them on May 6th for the "After Prom Party" which will be held at the Legion from approximately 1:00 a.m. to 4:30 a.m. Commissioner Saunders fully supported Commissioner Rice's request as did the rest of Council.

He then referenced a request seeking a grant for Governor Hicks' tomb and hoped that the City could supply whatever assistance relative to that. Governor Hicks was one of the five governors from Cambridge and the tomb in the Cambridge Cemetery "certainly needs some assistance right now." He hoped that the City's Grant Administrator could give them some guidance. Commissioner Vickers further suggested that possibly Armond Hayward of the Historic Preservation Commission could also be of some assistance.

Commissioner Vickers then asked Mr. Collison if the Cambridge Cemetery Corporation is being reinstated and he indicated that it is his understanding that the County is considering the reactivation and the accountant at Robbins & Adams is following up.

Commissioner Rice then mentioned the downtown loans that the City has had in the past..."for whatever reasons, people have, all of a sudden, lost the concept of the word loan and considered these to be grants, when in fact they were not ...loan does indicate repayment at some point in time and is not a gift." He would like a report within the next couple of weeks to give Council information regarding these outstanding loans.

COMMENTS FROM DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS

Mr. Pritchett stated that he was asked to contact the State regarding the maintenance of Academy and Cedar Streets due to the extra traffic being detoured from the closing of the creek bridge. They did come out to do some minor repairs, but did agree to help the City to do the necessary repairs as soon as the weather permits.

With no further business, Commissioner Saunders made a motion to adjourn at 7:45 p.m., seconded by Commissioner Watkins. Motion carried unanimously.

I hereby certify that the foregoing is a true and accurate account of the Council meeting of Monday, February 14, 2000 insofar as I personally am aware.

Heidi R. Adams, Executive Assistant