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August 14, 1998     Cape Gazette
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August 14, 1998
 

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12 - CAPE GAZETYE, Friday, August 14 - August 20, 1998 Rehoboth Planners make another stab at neighborhood presel By Trish Vernon The Rehoboth Beach Planning Commission is poised to bring its proposal for a neighborhood preservation program to the board of commissioners on Friday, Aug. 14. The planners met with Linda Dixon, a planning specialist with the University of Delaware's In- stitute for Public Administration (IPA) on Friday, July 9, to hash over her proposal to adopt a pro- gram that would attempt to pre- vent "changes in the built environ- ment that are in conflict with ex- isting neighborhood character." Generally pleased with the lat- est proposal to combat a problem the planners have discussed for a few .years now, they voted at their Monday, Aug. 10 regular meeting to take Dixon's offer to the board. The group concurred with fel- low planner Mable Granke that neighborhood preservation is ad- dressed as an objective in the city's Long Range Plan, "and I just want to know how fast we can get started - it's absolutely neces- sary," she said. If the proposal receives the board's blessing, Dixon and staff, along with volunteers, would compile information and come up with ordinance revisions "aimed at retaining the historic and exist- ing character of residential neigh- borhoods...based on documented and quantifiable existing charac- teristics." Seven characteristics would be inventoried with the help of the volunteers in the neighborhoods identified as the Historic District, the Pines, South Rehoboth, Schoolvue, Country Club Estates and the Grove/Camp Meeting Area. These characteristics include setbacks, lot size, street frontage, lot coverage, total lot coverage of other manmade surfaces, building bulk and building height. The city would be responsible Rehoboth to hold The Rehoboth Beach Board of Commissioners will hold its regu- lar monthly meeting at 7 p.m., Fri- day, Aug. 14, in the commission- Police Continu! from page 11 cluded sleeping bags and beer cans. Both are to appear at Alder- man's Court at a later date. William R. Borner Jr., 33, of Forest Hill, Md., was arrested for urinating in public and charged "wth disorderly conduct at 3:21 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 13, on Stockley Street. He will appear in Alderman's Court at a later date. Joshua A. Wyatt, 18, of Lewes was charged with driving under the influence, two traffic charges and a criminal violation stemming after being stopped at 11:42 p.m., Wednesday, Aug. 12, while dri- ving his vehicle at First Street and Rehoboth Avenue. ) LOn for providing the volunteers, with IPA giving technical assistance, training and data management ser- vices. The timeline includes the fol- lowing: Month One Develop a mailing list to noti- fy property owners of the impend- ing project and solicit for volun- teers; IPA prepares data collection forms and maps, with the city pro- viding base maps and parcel infor- mation needed to prepare data col- lection materials; The city and IPA work out a public involvement and education program. Month Two The city will maintain a list of volunteers and their assignments, designating a volunteer coordina- tor; IPA's team leaders will per- form preliminary field data collec- tion for several parcels in different neighborhoods to ensure effec- tiveness of data collection forms and approach. Month Three The city will provide a central headquarters for data collection; IPA team leaders will train and lead the volunteers responsi- ble for qttality, consistency and completeness of data measure- ment. Months Four and Five IPA will prepare database of existing neighborhood Character- istics, to be presented to the city in a summary that includes a de- scription of characteristics as measured for each neighborhood, including variations, with sup- porting documents. This report will not develop recommenda- tions or ordinances. Once these tasks are completed, the data will be analyzed in an ef- fort to develop recommendations regarding ordinances, design re- view criteria and other regulatory or nonregulatory measures. The report will include informa- tion from other sources on the state-of-the-art practice for each of the identified neighborhood characteristics. It will also in- clude specific actions that can be implemented to improve preserva- tion efforts. With the project divided into two tasks - compiling data and then providing recommendations - IPA has informed the planners that the cost would be $16,100 for the first phase and $3,900 for the second phase, with the final rec- ommendations delivered within 60 days of providing the summary findings. The university will match this amount with approxi- mately $1,699 in goods and ser- vices. Granke said she feels the cost to be "very reasonable," as they not- ed they were impressed with Dixon's presentation. They hope the commissioners will be equally impressed, because board mem- bers have expressed their reserva- tions with the first IPA presenta- tion by other IPA staffers. Planner Ed Cerullo noted that without compiling the data as set forth by this proposal, all of the talk of preserving neighborhoods will remain just that. "It's a nec- essary first step and we should so- licit the needed approval," he said. Terming it a "boilerplate," that can be tailored to the needs of Re- hoboth Beach, Planner Bob Scala said the most difficult task will be public education and providing a forum for comments. Mayor Sam Cooper, who was in the audience, agreed that this pro- posal is very good and that Dixon is a great addition to the team, but advised them that they must all agree that this is the route to go before the board will accept it. He also advised that the Plan- ning commission should remain in control of the project, if approved. Asked if the planners should be reorganizational meeting on Aug. 14 ers room. Except for the usual po- lice, building and licensing, city manager's and committee reports, the agenda was void of any other Noting the number of DUI ar- rests made by Cpl. Mike Murphy that evening, Doyle noted that "Mike did a super job and truly displayed a consistent, dogged dedication to getting drunk drivers off the road. Most officers would be happy with one DUI arrest at the beginning of a shift and relax the rest of the night. Mike made the streets a lot safer last night for every other motorist, bicyclist and pedestrian." Doyle went on to note that the DUIs caught are "barely the tip of the iceberg. It's very scary to con- sider how many drunk drivers there are on our city streets every night of the week that our officers miss because they have numerous other patrol and enforcement du- ties to perform." business as of earlier in the week. However, the planning commis- sion is expected to make its pre- sentation asking the board to agree to accept a proposal from the Uni- versity of Delaware's Institute for Public Administration concerning neighborhood preservation. The board will then hold its an- nual reorganization meeting, when commissioners Richard Sar- gent and Patti Slreeve will take the oath of office, as no election was held this summer, due to the fact that former commissioner Kenny Vincent resigned after he sold his in-town property and was no longer eligible to serve on the board. Sargent, and Shreeve were the only other two people to file for election. Election of officers will also take place, with Jack Hyde as vice mayor; Sargent as secretary; Dawn Johnson as assis- tant secretary; Priscilla Smith as treasurer and Jan Scala, assistant treasurer. ready to offer another proposal if this one doesn't cut the mustard, Cooper replied, "if the planners say they want to do it, it will get done." With that, the members present, Granke, Scala, Cerullo, Burt Dukes and Chairman Mary Campbell, voted to take the pro- posal to the board. Absent were Jan Konesey, Chris Quillen and Alan Garey. and Increase Your ame with tax-free municipal bonds. 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