ROCK HALL TOWN COUNCIL MEETING REPORT SPECIAL UTILITIES BOARD May 28, 2019

PRESENT: Jacobs, Andrews, Collyer, Edwards, Jones (attorney Kyle Kirby, Acting Chief Dempsey, Taylor Walker, Denny Dalrymple)

ACTIONS TAKEN BY VOTE TO:
• Approve meeting agenda
• Establish tram fare at $2.00 per ride
• By letter, propose changes in water agreement to Kent County Commissioners
• Keep billing rate for trailer park as is for now, including 15 % increase, pending SERCAP rate study

OTHER
• Jacobs stated that Town’s licensed water and wastewater plant operators are doing an excellent job. She further stated: “I’ve discovered how bad they [water and wastewater plants] are physically, the liabilities that are inherent with the condition they are in. Generally, the problems have grown from serious neglect decisions that have been made over the last six-to-eight years, and tonight we’re about moving forward.”
• Walid Saffouri (program administrator, MDE) reported that 100% funding is available for an engineering study of the wastewater plant; such study will determine what needs to be repaired/replaced, and what may be fundable; tentative timetable for wastewater plant engineering study would be six months to start and 6-8 months to conduct
• Vikki Prettyman (SERCAP) used photos to document and report specific problems in water and wastewater plants; she stated a grant for an engineering study for the water plant may be harder to obtain
• Prettyman also stated that SERCAP can propose an asset management plan, with inventory placed on a spread sheet so the operators can use preventive maintenance instead of reacting when problems occur
• Water pipes along Sharp Street are reportedly in bad shape; Prettyman will look into funding sources; EPA will pay to address lead content in “gooseneck pipes”; Walker states that frequent testing finds no lead in the Town’s water supply
• M&C engaged in a complicated discussion with trailer park owners regarding water rates, meters, etc., including the suggestion for the Town to annex the portion that lies in the County

Compiled by Gren Whitman

CRAFTING ROCK HALL’S 2020 BUDGET

With respect to Rock Hall’s new Mayor & Council crafting its fiscal 2020 budget, the first two discussions have been a tour through the General and Utilities funds item by item in an intelligent, informed, adult fashion.
Budget items touched on so far include:
• Infrastructure (focus on water and wastewater plants, municipal building)
• Vehicles and equipment
• Trams operations, safety, and finances
• Uniforms for Town employees
• Special events
• All the various contracts
• Hiring a town manager
Starting at 6:00 p.m., the next scheduled meetings—open to public, of course—are on May 21, 22, 29, 30.
If you want to be informed about the nuts-and-bolts of Town government, this is for you.
You will also be able to more fully understand the size and scope of the financial, administrative, and infrastructural problems facing our Mayor & Council, as well as all town residents, businesses, and property owners. These are at present Herculean challenges! M&C are being assisted by Clerk-Treasurer Loller.
Submitted by Gren Whitman

ROCK HALL TOWN COUNCIL MEETING REPORT REGULAR MEETING May 9, 2019

PRESENT: Jacobs, Andrews, Edwards, Collyer, Jones (Loller, Dempsey, Porter)

ACTIONS TAKEN BY VOTE TO:
• Adopt agenda with revisions
• Approve April 11 meeting minutes
• Elect Andrews as Vice Mayor
• Appoint Capt. Bill Dempsey as Acting Chief of Police

ACTIONS TAKEN WITHOUT VOTE TO:
• Accept Meg Parry’s resignation as grant writer; Parry to complete paperwork for 4-5 projects
• With Planning and Zoning contract with county set to terminate on June 30, M&C will explore with county commissioners if contract can be extended
• OK to issue RFP seeking engineering advice for pump at wastewater plant, asset management plan, and water tower and corroded pipes
• OK Jacobs to draft job description for town manager and circulate; Council assented to suggested qualifications: BA in public or business administration (MA preferred); five years experience in administration; equivalent education and/or experience to be considered; references required; residency requirement not determined
• Four estimates requested for municipal building roof repairs; M&C will research status of USDA grant
• Town to provide appropriately sized water meter at trailer park
• Council to meet at 6:00 p.m. on May 14 and 16 to deliberate on FY2020 budget preparation; initial “conversation” meeting possibly to be held May 20

OTHER
• Jones sworn in as Council member
• Jacobs again reviewed Council’s rules of order
• Jacobs stated monthly financial report format will be revised
• Andrews certified on Open Meetings Act; Jacobs asks all Council members to complete on-line OMA course
• Residents invited to volunteer to help with grant applications and surveys of residents and businesses
• Installation of playground near lagoon has started; batting cage has been installed; tennis courts to be used for pickle ball tournament; July 4 planning underway; dugout covers ordered for lagoon field
• Water leak on Sharp Street to be addressed in one or two weeks; two other leaks will also be dealt with
• Clarifier bearing replacement and other operational issues being addressed as immediate priority; clarifier to be drained for complete inspection
• Mural project: May 10 for painting by school children for Bayside; May 11 for painting by everyone at Bayside and Java Rock (1-4 p.m.)
• Audit of Town’s IT systems is being conducted; Communications Board appointments under review
• Museum Board is “under reconstruction”
• M&C will assess overall problems at municipal building (roof, mold, windows, etc.) and decide what action(s) to take
• Reported that natural food store approved for Tucker’s garage building by Planning Commission

Compiled by Gren Whitman

FULL PROCEEDINGS CAN BE VIEWED @

https://5bbb19a5c6aad.streamlock.net/vod/_definst_/mp4:rock_hall_md/2019-05-09_3504379_MayorCouncil_5919.mp4/playlist.m3u8?wowzaplaystart=0

ROCK HALL TOWN COUNCIL MEETING REPORT ORGANIZATIONAL MEETING May 6, 2019

PRESENT: Dawn Jacobs, Beth Andrews, Tim Edwards, Eleanor Collyer (Charles MacLeod)

ACTIONS TAKEN BY VOTE TO:
• None

ACTIONS TAKEN WITHOUT VOTE TO:
• Mayor Dawn Jacobs sworn in by Clerk of Circuit Court Mark Mumford
• Councilwoman Eleanor Collyer sworn in by Jacobs
• Because Councilwoman-elect Carolyn Jones was not present, selection of Vice Mayor tabled until M&C’s May 9 meeting
• Council agreed with these liaison assignments: Edwards and Collyer, Water and Sewer plus Streets and Sanitation; Andrews, Planning and Zoning; Jones, Parks and Recreation; Collyer and Jacobs, Museum Board
• Police Department presently reporting to Jacobs, as acting Town Manager
• Ethics Commission and Communications Board to be considered in near future, as well as, possibly, a financial advisory board

OTHER
Jacobs made several announcements, proposals, and suggestions, including:
• M&C meetings to be governed by Town Charter and Roberts’ Rules of Order
• Sequence of M&C meetings to include (1) “conversation meetings” for informal discussions among and between M&C and residents; (2) workshop meetings for discussions by M&C; (3 and 4) Utility Board and Regular (business) meetings for decisions by M&C
• M&C immediate priorities will be (1) FY2020 Town budget; (2) attention to Town’s water and wastewater treatment systems; (3) hiring new Town Manager; and (4) how to reconstitute Town planning and zoning office
• M&C should take informational tours of Town properties, marinas, businesses, etc., to determine problems and possible solutions
• Seeking suggestions and help from residents re: “Good of the Town”
• Surveys of residents and businesses to assemble needed economic and demographic information for planning purposes
• Re-evaluate Clerk-Treasurer’s staffing situation

Compiled by Gren Whitman

PROCEEDINGS WERE NOT STREAMED ON TOWN WEB SITE

TONIGHT – SPECIAL MAYOR AND COUNCIL MEETING

In the Council Chambers – Open to the public

Dawn Jacobs, Mayor elect & Elinore Collyer and Carolyn Jones, Council electees will be sworn into office at 6:45

Mayor and Council Organizational Meeting will starts at 7 pm