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February 23, 1996     Cape Gazette
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February 23, 1996

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Rehoboth Continued from page 1 contirtued. He will need to acquire at least 419 or 420 certifiable signatures of eligible voters in city elections on his petition which must be filed with the city by Friday, March 8. (The board would then have to act in no less than 30 and no more than 60 days.) March 8 is also the date of the BESOSA next Re- hoboth Beach Commissioners meeting, at which time the board is expected to adopt the down- town traffic management plan. At the Feb. 9 meeting, when the per- rnit plan was adopted, City Solici- tor Walt Speakman was directed to put the new metering plan in ordinance form in preparation for March 8. However, Brinckmeyer, in his letter to CARB mem- bers, states that "It was BRINCKMEYFat the under- standing of several of the group that worked on the parking plan that the two plans would work to- gether and be passed at the same time." Noting that there "were in- dications" that the traffic manage- ment plan might be passed at the March 8 meeting, "there is no guarantee that will happen, If we wait until March 8 and the traffic management plan is not passed, it will be too late to circulate a peti- tion for referendum." A few of the commissioners went on record Feb. 9 as vowing to adopt the downtown traffic management plan on March 8. Mayor Sam Cooper said that the threat of referendum or repeal would considerably dampen his enthusiasm for the downtown plan, as it is his belief that revenue generated from the permit plan would be needed to offset the loss of revenue the city would incur should it adopt the downtown plan. "I believe that the board is com- mitted to passing the downtown plan," Besosa said. "They couldn't take action in February because the plan wasn't in ordi- nance form. The whole reason for this drive is because they don't trust the commissioners and I think that's pretty bad." Admitting that the plan as adopted "isn't perfect," Besosa stressed that it does include a "mechanism for fine tuning and won't cost the residents one cent. In fact, I believe it will protect property values in the future," he added, wanting to allay any fears that the board will refuse to adopt the downtown plan March 8 as a reason for signing the petition. Besosa proceeded to question CARB as a legitimate organiza- tion, as the last time he received a request for dues was three years ago. This week's letter seeks $15 in dues for 1996 to offset the cost of mailing the letters. "I believe that Brinckmeyer is taking this on himself under CARB letterhead," he said. (In fact, no one showed up at a meeting of the organiza- tion Brinckmeyer tried to hold last fall, despite prior media notice, al- though in the past he has claimed a membership in the hundreds.) Both Brinckmeyer and Besosa agree on one thing - it will be more difficult this time around to acquire the needed signatures. First of all, it's mid-winter and many eligible voters aren't in resi- dence, and secondly, the plan as adopted is very liberal in allowing free permits not only to residents and property owners, but also to businesses. "My wife and I have talked to a lot of people who say they're glad we're getting this permit plan," Besosa noted. Brinckmeyer stated that Dennis Diehl "doesn't want to get in- volved in the petition drive." Even if there are enough signa- tures to force the referendum or repeal, Diehl believes that there are still parts of his plan that could stand on their own, without a per- mit plan, he said. Of the possibility that the board would refuse to adopt the down- town plan only because petition efforts prove successful, thus bringing about what Brinckmeyer is concerned will come to pass, he replied "I guess we're boxed in any way we go. But I've heard them keep saying they would do something in the past and change their minds. So we're doing this just in case." 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