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Board of County Commissioners

September 14, 2004

The Honorable Board of County Commissioners met this evening at 6:00 p.m. with the following present: Roy W. Crow, Scott D. Livie, and William W. Pickrum, presiding.

Susanne Hayman, County Administrator, was also in attendance.

Minutes of the previous meeting were approved. W. Roger Williams, Treasurer, reported a balance of $2,908,981.00.

Commissioner Pickrum requested a moment of silence to remember the men and women in uniform around the world who have died in defense of the United States' freedom and America's way of life.


Rigbie Bluff Condominium - Correspondence was received from Harvey Matlack, President, Rigbie Bluff Condominium, reporting that modifications were completed on the storm drain system at Rigbie Bluff Condominium which will eliminate infiltration of the runoff into the soil and redirect it into the existing emergency overflow system that drains directly into the Bay.

Mr. Matlack also reported that the modifications were done to reduce the volume of water that flows down the steep County property adjacent to the Condominium as a first step in addressing the erosion of the bank, which he described as threatening the stability of the Condominium building and the Town sidewalk. Recent heavy rainfall has deepened sinkholes between the Condominium and the sidewalk and increased the exposure of the sidewalk footings. He expressed his desire that the County and the Town will work with Rigbie Bluff Condominium to progress this stabilization project.

Commissioner Pickrum indicated that the Board will address the concerns pertaining to the bank erosion and the stabilization project by contacting David H. Wilson, Coordinator, Maryland Eastern Shore Resource, Conservation and Development Area (RC&D).

Pilings/Public Dock - Commissioner Pickrum noted that a copy of Memorandum, dated September 7, and directed to Carter Stanton, Director of Public Works, was received from Larry R. Isard, who lives in Betterton. Mr. Isard issued his objections to Kenny Fletcher's proposed installation of permanent pilings between the public dock and the Rigbie Bluff Condominium Dock in Betterton. Among them were the following: the placement of the pilings will inhibit his ability to get in and out of his boat slip; that when Mr. Fletcher began to dock his boat on the "no docking" side of the public dock, on three occasions, the out drive of Mr. Isard's boat were tangled in Mr. Fletcher's anchor lines.

Commissioner Livie indicated that the application for Mr. Fletcher's permit to install said permanent pilings is currently under advisement with the Maryland Department of the Environment.


Commissioner Crow reported on the Board of Education meeting that he attended on September 7. Discussion was held concerning the Kent County High School (KCHS) renovation project.

As requested, a letter will go forth to the Board of Education confirming the Board's commitment in placing lights at the KCHS athletic field. The issue of concessions and restrooms will be a part of an additional, later phase of this project.

A copy of correspondence dated September 1 was received from Robert Hunter of Rock Hall, and directed to the Kent County BOE, issuing a complaint related to an incident involving his son at the Rock Hall Middle School. Correspondence, dated September 3, was received from David Lever, Executive Director, Maryland Public School Construction Program, directed to Dr. Bonnie Ward, Superintendent, Kent County Public Schools, reporting that Garnett Elementary School was surveyed during the month of April 2004 by a staff member of the Department of General Services for the Interagency Committee on School Construction.

The purpose of the survey was to ascertain the level and quality of maintenance being performed in said building. The results of the survey The results of the survey indicated that the overall rating of Garnett Elementary School is "very good."


The County Administrator received a memorandum from Pat Merritt, Budget and Accounting Director, advising of contact made by Distributed Computing, Inc. offering a cost free review of the County's telephone costs which will include recommendations for more cost effective options. The County Administrator approved for the offer to be accepted.


Commissioner Pickrum noted the Memorandum that was received from P.A.M. Schaller, Director of Economic Development, in response to the Commissioners' request at their meeting on August 31, that the Kent County CD-ROM be accessible on the Kent County Economic Development website. Having consulted with Mike Wooten, Kent County's webmaster, Ms. Schaller reported a problem involving an excessive download time, as well as the costs involved for storage on the server.

The Commissioners agreed to the option that would entail the uploading of a screenshot of one of the major pages displaying the directory, etc. and a link to a form to order a hard copy CD-ROM. Ms. Schaller will be advised accordingly.


The Commissioners approved a raffle permit for the Radcliffe Creek School, Chestertown, for its fund-raising event involving a monthly drawing on the fourth Tuesdays of October and November, 2004, and from January through and ending May, 2005, to take place at the school, and for Chester River Artsworks, Inc. for its fund-raising event with a drawing ending November 7, 2004.


As requested by Mary Kate O'Donnell, Executive Director, Historical Society of Kent County, Inc., the Commissioners approved to forward letter to the Eastern Shore Heritage, Inc. endorsing the publication of a heritage tourism walking and driving tour entitled "Chestertown to the Chesapeake Bay: A Legacy Tour" which will be included with the Historical Society's grant application packet.


The County's application for subdivision will be considered by the Chestertown Planning Commission at its regular meeting on September 15.


At 5:40 p.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Crow, seconded by Commissioner Livie, and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to go into closed session relating to potential litigation in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 (a)(8) of the Annotated Code of Maryland.

The closed session adjourned at 5:45 p.m.


Ms. Hayman noted that a copy of correspondence, dated September 7, was received from Nony Howell, Sanitarian Supervisor, Environmental Programs, Kent County Health Department, and directed to Mayor Jay Jacobs of Rock Hall.

Ms. Howell indicated that she reviewed the complaint which Mayor Jacobs forwarded to Dr. Leland Spencer, County Health Officer, regarding the public nuisance at the property Tax Map 501, Parcel # 549, 21183 Sharp Street in Rock Hall, within the incorporated town limits.

Ms. Howell reported that an inspection of said property was conducted and a violation notice was sent citing the violations of the County Code of Local Laws, Nuisance Ordinance. Ms.

Howell also noted that the County Administrator informed the Health Department that the County Attorney may not be able to enforce County Nuisance Ordinances in incorporated towns, such as Rock Hall. Therefore, enforcement actions, if necessary, would have to occur through the efforts of the incorporated towns according to applicable ordinances.

The Commissioners, as per the request of the Rock Hall Town Attorney, granted the Rock Hall Town Attorney authorization for the enforcement of any applicable County Nuisance Ordinances by the Town of Rock Hall and its attorney for nuisance abatement within the corporate limits of Rock Hall.


The Commissioners approved and signed Resolution amending the Personnel Policies and Procedures Manual for the purpose of adding approved absences for parental leave through a new subsection, Article III - "Parental Leave" providing a 10-day paid parental leave benefit.

At 5:10 p.m., a motion was made by Commissioner Crow, seconded by Commissioner Livie and made unanimous by Commissioner Pickrum to go into closed session to discuss personnel matters in accordance with State Government Article, Section 10.508 (a)(i) of the Annotated Code of Maryland.

The closed session adjourned at 5:40 p.m.


Commissioner Crow met with the Agricultural Advisory Commission at 5:45 p.m. this evening to discuss a proposal received from Synagro Mid-Atlantic, Inc. as it relates to biosolids land application.


Correspondence was received from Benjamin Cassell, President, Board of County Commissioners, Queen Anne's County, requesting permission on behalf of the Queen Anne's County Sheriff's Office, for the law enforcement personnel of said Office to utilize Kent County's firing range at Tolchester for low light firearms qualifications on five different evenings during the month of November.

Correspondence was also received from Corporal Craig T. Ingram and Captain Martin E. Knight, Commander, both of Centreville Barrack "S", Maryland State Police, requesting permission to use the firing range on the Nike Base in the County.

Corporal Ingram explained that he is the Firearms Instructor for the Maryland State Police, Centreville Barrack, and the Chestertown Police Department. He also indicated that the firearms training would be conducted for day and night time use on a limited basis.

Corporal Ingram further explained that he contacted Sheriff John Price, the County Administrator, and Carter Stanton, Director of Public Works, all of whom have agreed to permit the Maryland State Police to use the range. Given permission, Corporal Ingram reported that he would prepare a schedule in consultation with the Sheriff and Mr. Stanton.

Ms. Hayman reported that any permission granted must be subject to certain safety requirements and a written agreement containing an idemnification provision. A Memorandum of Understanding will be prepared for signatures.


The Commissioners approved and signed Single Family Housing/Weatherization Assistance Agreement with the Department of Housing and Community Development, Community Development Administration and the County Commissioners of Caroline, Kent and Queen Anne's Counties and the County Council of Talbot County as Contractors and Upper Shore Aging, Inc. as the subcontractor. The Upper Shore Aging will be administering the weatherization assistance program in the above referenced counties.


The County Administrator will be meeting on September 16 with the county administrators of Caroline and Talbot Counties and members of the Maryland Transit Administration concerning new public transportation provisions commencing July 1, 2005.


Correspondence was received from Jo Anne Hutchinson Shellman of Hoon and Associates, LLC, of Chestertown, reporting that, pursuant to Environment Article 5-506, she submitted an application to the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), WMA, for a Permit to repair a pond on an unnamed stream in the Upper Chester River Watershed. She further reported that the pond spillway failed during a recent hurricane. The project, located on 263.2 acres, Cherry Lane, Millington, consists of repairing an existing dam. Plans for the proposed project were submitted to the Dam Safety Division of WMA for evaluation.

Persons wishing to review the plans for this project may do so by contacting Ms. Shellman's representative, Philip W. Hoon; or, to review the State's application file, persons may contact the MDE Dam Safety Division at 410.334.3411.


Engineering plans for the Worton Business Center were received from McCrone, Inc. The plans will now be reviewed by the County Engineer for further discussion.

There being no further business to claim their attention, the Board adjourned to meet again on Tuesday, September 21, 2004.


Janice F. Fletcher
Executive Assistant

Approved: William W. Pickrum, President