Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The March 2012 Joint Council Meeting

The March 2012 Delmar Delaware and Delmar Maryland Joint Council meeting was held last night. All the elected officials were present. My usual disclaimer is I am not part of the council and what I write is my personal views, not the minutes, of the meetings. It is also just the parts I want to comment on or write about. If you want to know the real story go to the meeting or read a newspaper.

The two Mayors alternate each month as to whom will be the chairman of the meeting, tonight was Mayor Carl Anderton, Jr turn to be Chairman. Carl's usual enthusiasm was lacking tonight and he seemed tired. No doubt in my opinion it is because he knew he would have to approve the Heron Pond mess.

First order of business was Delmar Delaware Mayor Michael Houlihan swearing in of three people for the Delmar Delaware Board Of Elections.

The big item of the night was Heron Pond. First the Town attorney pointed out various parts of the Maryland law pertaining to zoning changes and presented to the Delmar Maryland Council new versions of Ordinances 721 and 722. These two ordinances are being put into effect because Heron Pond developer Doug Marshall wants the zoning changed in Heron Pond. As you may recall there was also a legal notice posted in the newspaper about the zoning change.

Well as the discussion progressed it now seems Doug Marshall did not want the zoning change as advertised. Heron Pond is divided into three phases of development. There is a separate entity that purchased each phase but Doug Marshall is the principal in all three. A very confused discussion between the attorney, Doug Marshall and the council followed and frankly I am not real sure how it ended up. I think Doug Marshall wants Phase 1 to remain R2 zoned, Phase three to be R4 zoned and Phase two to be commercial, but hell as confused as Doug Marshall is about what he wants it may change entirely today. Also the special meeting advertised for the zoning changes is dropped for the time being due to incorrect information.

I had hopes for Heron Pond when I heard Doug Marshall was buying it but it is obvious he does not have a plan for the development of it. Even worst in spite of a poor record of dealing with developers the Maryland Mayor and Commissioners are going along with whatever he wants.

In approving construction for the three houses at Heron Pond the open space issue again came up. The Development was approved at 15% open space initially, it now seems the developers never had 15% open space in Phase One. Doug Marshall is saying when you consider the storm drain ponds and the area around them as open space then there is 15%. Some members or the Delaware Council pointed out Woods and drain ponds are not open space. One person from the public said open space was considered as play grounds and she didn't consider it safe for children to be playing next to a drain pond as they might fall in. Marshall said the way the ponds are built with a gentle down slope, the children would more than likely wade in as opposed to falling in. Anyway Doug Marshall got what he wanted as The Maryland Mayor and four Commissioners all voted their approval.

Other items;
Verizon wireless sales office was given approval for flutter flags signs for 90 days. I am sure the flags will blend in well with the trash image of massage parlor, payday loans offices, pawn shops, and tattoo shops Delmar Delaware has.

Woodcreek development residents have dropped their lawsuit against the Thompsons. The new buyer of the Woodcreek property, Barry Mehta, is hoping to have the golf course open on Memorial Day and by mid-October be in operation seven days a week. So is this Barry Mehta the same one that had all those legal problems back in 2002?

The Walnut Street Project on the Maryland side of town will have at least one sidewalk according to the ADA.

The Fire Chief requested financial help in buying Thermo Imaging Cameras for the fire Department. They cost $6,100 a unit.

The Lecates building will be settled on next week.

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