11 June 2018 | Approved: 9 July 2018
Mayor Compton called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m. In attendance were Council Members Darrell Anderson, Charlie Challstrom, Rob Gilmore, Marida Hines, and Audrey Maskery. Pat Klein attended via teleconference. Also in attendance were Treasurer Mary Challstrom, Historic Preservation Commission Chair Bob Booher and residents Nan Aitel-Thompson, Georgette Cole, Christine Dibble, Marilynn Frey, John Hutchinson, John McClelland, Joan Mahaffey, Bud O’Connor, Carolyn O’Connor, Jane Seegal, Mimi Styles, Susan Van Nostrand, Mary Warfield, and Missy Yachup. Betsy Klinger arrived at 7:40 p.m.
Ordinance 2018-02; Ordinance To Authorize Sale Of Land Occupied By Main Buildings Initially Constructed In Part On Land Owned By The Town Of Washington Grove.
Mayor Compton called the Public Hearing to order at 7:31 p.m. He read the title of the ordinance, gave a brief summary and asked for comments. Bud O’Connor expressed his appreciation for the Council’s consideration of this ordinance and hopes it will pass. The following items were raised by public testimony:
- Enabling ordinance
- HPC review of this ordinance
- Town attorney’s opinion of this action (sale of public land)
- PC review of this ordinance
- Setting the sale price for the land
- The role of the building permit process
- The role of the 1987 Policy for Sale of Surplus Properties
- Historic character documentation for all properties listed
- Companion ordinances for each property
- Historic character included in companion ordinances (similar to the Exhibit C in the easement documentation)
Mayor Compton thanked all for their input. The public hearing was closed at 8:03 p.m.
REQUEST FOR PUBLIC COMMENT
Resolution 2018-06; Establishing Rules And Regulations For A Town Dog Park.
The public comment period began at 8:05 p.m. Mayor Compton explained the Resolution was introduced in order to obtain public comment from others to refine the document. The Resolution will likely be revised. He asked for comments. Christine Dibble commented for the ad hoc Dog Park Group, which had its first meeting. They submitted written suggestions
for several amendments to the original document. The Group would like to see the rules and regulations stay in the form of a resolution in order to allow for easier changes should that become necessary. There was a comparison of this document to the lake rules. Charlie Challstrom suggested an amended resolution could be written incorporating these and other suggestions received in writing from the Woods Committee. Mayor Compton concluded that the modifications to the resolution will be considered in July. The comment period closed at 8:15 p.m.
TOWN COUNCIL MEETING
Mayor Compton called the regular meeting of the Town Council to order at 8:16 p.m. He thanked Darrell Anderson and the Council for taking care of the quick-start items in May in order to keep business moving forward in his absence.
Approval of the Agenda: Darrell Anderson moved to approve the agenda. Marida Hines seconded the motion. Mayor Compton proposed to remove item #10 and added a number of items to New Business with the caveat that they were there in order to get the Council to begin consideration of the items not make any substantial decisions, and a brief introduction would suffice for today. He thought a two (2) minute introduction for each would be suffice. Concern was expressed about overloading the agenda and the potential for a very lengthy meeting. Darrell Anderson moved to accept as amended. Rob Gilmore seconded the motion. Vote: 5 (Darrell Anderson, Charlie Challstrom, Rob Gilmore, Marida Hines, Audrey Maskery) in favor, 1 (Pat Klein) opposed. Approved as amended.
Christine Dibble asked for Council recognition of the new Dog Park Group and asked if they could get a page on the Town website. She reported she and Mary Warfield were elected Co-Chairs. There was a discussion about what type of recognition she was seeking, the formation of the Emergency Preparedness Committee, where the meetings might be held, and the operation of the dog park by an ad hoc committee in the same way the lake operates. Mayor Compton suggested the Dog Park Group should do research and make recommendations, as done by advisory groups in other municipalities.
John McClelland made two requests;
1.) That the matter of potential conflict of interest and undue influence when a Council member is allowed to chair or co-chair a committee be addressed by the Council. He suggested a Council a member should only be permitted to serve as Council Liaison or a regular committee member. 2.) An update on the installation of the new speed humps on Chestnut Road. Councilor Anderson, responsible for Roads and Walkways, said he would pursue the matter.
Betsy Klinger reported that an ad hoc committee to investigate better communication is being formed. They will do research and convey their findings and recommendations to the Town Council.
Missy Yachup asked if the new Council will be reviewing the Woods Committee’s invasive plant control/removal efforts in the woods. She stated she was not a fan of herbicides and, to her, it makes more sense to deal with the deer problem.
Mimi Bolotin asked about modernizing Town elections starting with the Town Charter. We make it harder to vote than the State of Maryland.
Approval of Minutes: Charlie Challstrom moved to approve the minutes of the Town Council meeting on May 21, 2018 as distributed and with Marida Hines’ change. Audrey Maskery seconded the motion. Discussion: how to note the names of Council members in the recorded vote. It was decided if the vote was not unanimous, all names (first and last) would be noted. There was a discussion about including “statements for the record” in meeting minutes. Under Council Priorities, a substitute summary was accepted. Darrell Anderson moved to approve the minutes with amendments. Rob Gilmore seconded the motion. Mayor Compton reviewed the amendments as follows:
- Marida Hines’ motion restated to reflect support not formation of the Communications group
- The full names of Councilors and their vote will be written unless the vote is unanimous.
- The substitute language to summarize issues under Council Priorities.
Vote: 6-0. Approved as amended.
Mayor Compton would like the Council to consider ways to better streamline the minutes but still include important content. He will also distribute information concerning streamlining minutes.
Treasurers Report 2017-May pdf
Darrell Anderson moved to accept the Treasurer’s Report for May 2018. Audrey Maskery seconded the motion. Discussion: Mayor Compton asked for a status report on the resurfacing of the tennis courts. Audrey stated rain has been a big problem and the plan is to start on June 18, 2018. In the meantime the poles and nets will be put up for play until the resurfacing occurs. Vote: 6-0. Report accepted.
Marida Hines moved to transfer $10K from savings to checking. Darrell Anderson seconded the motion. Vote: 6-0. Motion approved.
Introduction and Approval of Resolution 2018-07; Budget Transfers: Charlie Challstrom moved to introduce Resolution 2018-07. Marida Hines seconded the motion. Discussion: none. Vote: 6-0. Resolution approved.
Charlie Challstrom moved to adopt Resolution 2018-07. Darrell Anderson seconded the motion. Vote: 6-0.
Discussion and Action on Ordinance 2018-02: Charlie Challstrom moved to enact Ordinance 2018-02; Ordinance To Authorize Sale Of Land Occupied By Main Buildings Initially Constructed In Part On Land Owned By The Town Of Washington Grove. Rob Gilmore seconded the motion. Discussion: Charlie Challstrom noted the need to set a sales price and noted that in previous years the price was established by the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation. After extensive discussion of alternatives, Rob Gilmore moved to amend Section 1A setting the sales price at $1.00 per square foot. Charlie Challstrom seconded the motion. Vote: 6-0. Amendment approved.
Pat Klein moved to strike the last sentence on Page 4 because it was removed in a previous version of this document. Charlie Challstrom seconded the motion. Vote: 5 (Darrell Anderson, Charlie Challstrom, Pat Klein, Marida Hines, Audrey Maskery) in favor, 1 (Rob Gilmore) opposed. Amendment approved.
Rob Gilmore moved to amend the main motion with the addition of language to the 3rd sentence in Section E (“by the Town Council”). Darrell Anderson seconded the motion. Vote: 6-0. Amendment approved.
Rob Gilmore moved to amend the main motion with the addition of language to Section F (1), (“but only to the extent that a permit is otherwise required under existing Town ordinances or County or State laws”.) Marida Hines seconded the motion. Discussion included:
- the process as it pertains to obtaining a building permit
- protection of historic character of homes
- benefits to retaining control of land/home
- results of any disagreements
- adding covenants to the accompanying ordinances
Charlie Challstrom called the question. Darrell Anderson seconded. Vote: 5 (Darrell Anderson, Charlie Challstrom, Rob Gilmore, Marida Hines, Audrey Maskery) in favor, 1 (Pat Klein) opposed. Amendment approved.
Charlie Challstrom called the question for the original motion to enact Ordinance 2018-02 as amended. Vote: 6-0. Approved as amended.
Approval of Mayor’s Appointments to Historic Preservation Commission, Board of Zoning Appeals and the Planning Commission: Mayor Compton announced after 10 years of service (2 terms), Steve Werts would be leaving the Planning Commission. He thanked Steve for his service on behalf of his Town. Charlie Challstrom moved to approve the Mayor’s appointment of alternate Planning Commission member Georgette Cole as a full member. Darrell Anderson seconded the motion and added to the motion an expression of appreciation for Steve’s 10 years of service. Audrey Maskery seconded the motion.
Vote: 6-0. Appointment approved.
Darrell Anderson moved to approve the Mayor’s re-appointment of Marc Hansen to the Board of Zoning Appeals. Audrey Maskery seconded the motion. Vote: 6-0. Appointment approved.
Charlie Challstrom moved to approve the Mayor’s re-appointment of Bob Booher and David Stopak to the Historic Preservation Commission. Audrey Maskery seconded the motion. Concern was raised whether there was a perception that the same people do everything, and if the Town was doing enough to advertise these openings. It was noted that when individuals expressed interest in reappointment, they usually were reappointed. When appointees step down new volunteers were likely to be sought. Vote: 6-0.
There will be an announcement in the July Bulletin asking for a volunteers interested in serving as an alternate commissioner on either the Planning or Historic Preservation Commissions.
Darrell Anderson moved to clarify the terms of current HPC members. Rob Gilmore seconded the motion. The following terms for members of the Historic Preservation Commission were proposed for ratification:
- Robert Booher 2018-2021
- David Stopak 2018-2021
- Gail Littlefield 2017-2020
- Wendy Harris 2016-2019
- Mimi Styles 2016-2019
Vote: 6-0. Motion approved.
Council Reports: The Mayor and Town Council discussed the following:
- Whether or not to list who attended meetings; Pat felt it was unnecessary and Rob felt it was interesting to know who attended.
- Council areas of responsibility
- Removal of “Committee” from some groups titles
- Whether or not to keep “Safety” listed as a separate area of responsibility
- Approval by general consensus
Mayor’s Announcements: Mayor Compton announced the appreciation for former Mayor Joli McCathran will take place at the Jazz Brunch on June 17, 2018 at 10:30 AM. A proclamation and gifts will be presented, and representatives from our District 39 state delegation are expected to participate.
New Business: Because of the late hour, all discussion was tabled until the next meeting, and the Mayor asked Councilors to begin thinking about the matters for future discussion.
Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at 10:47 PM.
TC REPORTS – July 2018