Financial concerns dominated Tuesday night’s meeting of the Ocean View Town Council, as council members wrangled with falling revenue, an increasing need for space for town operations and questions about how much value to place on a public safety program championed by the town’s police chief.
The Selbyville woman who was arrested last October after her 4-year-old daughter brought heroin to her daycare signed a plea deal last week.
Ashley R. Tull, 30, pleaded guilty to one charge of endangering the welfare of a child. Tull was sentenced by Superior Court Judge E. Scott Bradley to one year of probation and substance abuse evaluation, and possible treatment.
Last week, the Ocean View Planning & Zoning Commission reviewed the concept plan submitted by property owner C.J. Pines LLC to create a general business location that will include structures for a restaurant and office/retail space, located at 83 Atlantic Avenue (Route 26) at the intersection of Woodland Avenue.
The parcel is 3.37 acres and is zoned in the town’s General Business District 1. The concept plan shows a 5,000-square-foot restaurant and 9,000-square-foot retail/office building to be constructed on the property.
Town Administrative Official Charles McMullen reminded the commission that the applicant is not required to disclose what kind of restaurant they are looking to house; it simply must comply with the town code. Entrances to the property would be from both Atlantic and Woodland.
For the second time in less than a year, SoDel Concepts’ Doug Ruley and his team of executive chefs were invited to bring a taste of Southern Delaware to the Big Apple at the James Beard House. And for the second time in less than a year, they did just that, selling out the event and honoring the late Matt Haley — the 2014 James Beard Foundation Humanitarian of the Year — along the way.
Grocery shoppers who go to Hocker’s Super Center and visit with employees of Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage of Bethany Beach this weekend will be able to make a donation of canned goods to area food pantries.
Coldwell Banker has participated in food drives in previous years; however, they decided to start earlier this spring, after receiving a call for help.
The original plans for the Woodlawn Trail housing development in Dagsboro included a walking trail leading to the park and designed for community use. However, the plans would have left some residents, including Dina Mock, without much of a back yard.
The Bethany Beach Town Council at its March 20 meeting unanimously approved the budget for the Town’s 2016 fiscal year, which begins April 1. The budget calls for $8.4 million in revenue, with $7 million going to operating costs and $1.4 million to capital projects and debt repayment.
Council Treasurer Jerry Dorfman noted that that budget before the council, including proposed increases in parking and water use rates, had been recommended for adoption by the Budget & Finance Committee.
The fee increases add 25 cents per hour to the parking rate, raising it to $1.75 per hour, with commensurate increases in the costs for daily and weekly parking passes and for shuttle buses from outside communities. (Rehoboth Beach recently raised its metered parking rates from $1.50 per hour to $2 per hour.)
Two Sussex County Council members stopped to chat with the Shore Democrats on March 18. George Cole and Rob Arlett talked about development, as well as County services, at the group’s lunch meeting at NorthEast Seafood Kitchen in Ocean View.
Just weeks before new flood maps were to be enacted in South Bethany, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has agreed to wind back the clock. FEMA has rescinded the “final determination” that previously raised the base flood elevation (BFE) for oceanfront homes in the town, at the Town’s urging and under pressure from Delaware’s Congressional delegation.
BFE is the elevation to which floodwaters are expected to rise during a 100-year flood. For years, Ocean Drive had a BFE of 12 feet. Houses had to be built starting no lower than that elevation or pay high flood-insurance premiums.
FEMA considered lowering several South Bethany zones (most notably Ocean Drive to VE-10) during a large-scale rewrite of Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) in August of 2013. However, a councilmember’s “inquiry” about the lightened restrictions caused FEMA to actually up the BFE, to 13 feet instead of 10.
Next month, Ocean View will hold its annual municipal election, selecting someone to hold the District 4 council seat, which is currently held by Councilman Bob Lawless, who is term-limited. The election has four contenders, and Fairway Village resident Jon Debuchananne is one of the four who hope to win the seat.
Grab a basket, as Selbyville is getting a jump-start on Easter egg hunting this year. Most of the local egg hunts will be on the Easter Bunny’s traditional big weekend, but Selbyville is starting early.
The free Selbyville Community Easter Egg Hunt will be held Saturday, March 28, at the public park on Park Street (across from the Selbyville Volunteer Fire Company’s fire hall).
Teens are running the show at Indian River High School’s Variety Show, for one weekend only, March 27 and 28.
“We hope to continue to maintain that high level” of performance that the community is used to “and provide nice entertainment for the public,” said IRHS Music Director Nathan Mohler.
The musicians are getting creative, with a drum line, sax quartet and rocking Bruno Mars finale. There’s even an acoustic cover of Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy.”
The lineup ranges from music to stage routines, including a comedy game show. Musical renditions include a variety of genres: country (Aaron Lewis), R&B (Whitney Houston), pop rock (One Republic), Christian music and more.
Most of the acts have live accompaniment from a 27-piece pit band.
“We have a very good variety,” Mohler said.
The student performers also decided what they wanted to put on stage, choosing their own songs and acts.
“I’ve always felt, in the music world, a performer’s gonna get more out of it [based on] what they put in,” Mohler said. “If they’re doing what they want, they’re gonna care more about it… harbor that same passion and intensity.”
“A thing of beauty is a joy forever: It’s loveliness increases; it will never Pass into nothingness.”
Those are the words of the English poet John Keats, and the artists at Gallery One are inviting the public to visit the gallery to see how its artists have interpreted the theme “A Thing of Beauty.”
Fresh off the success of last year’s 25th anniversary event, the Ocean to Bay Bike Tour returns this April 17 and 18 with some new twists and turns for what has become a staple for local and regional cyclists.
After making some improvements to the course last year, Race Director Lauren Weaver, event and member relations manager of the Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce, and Bethany Beach’s Coastal Spokes Club have added another rest stop to the 30-mile course, extending the track to 36 miles.
“[Coastal Spokes] changed up the whole course to make it more attractive for cyclists,” Weaver explained. “They switched up all the paths. Everyone’s really getting the most out of their experience.”
The longer track will now consist of a 27-mile opt-out, for those who choose to take it, and was designed to offer more scenic views.
“It’s really great. We have excellent marking, thanks to Coastal Spokes,” Weaver explained. “They do all the markings. It’s real clear, easy to follow. It’s looking out at Holt’s Landing, the Indian River Bay, Derrickson’s Creek [and] Hemp Hills.”
The Quiet Resorts Charitable Foundation (QRCF) announced this week that the fourth annual Bunny Palooza! will be held on Saturday, April 4, starting at 8:30 a.m., with the 10K run kicking off at 8:30 and the 5K run/walk at 9:30 a.m., both at Parkwood Avenue and Atlantic Avenue in downtown Bethany Beach, ending on the Bethany Beach boardwalk.
Morning commute may be impacted by lane closures
The recent mandatory detours along Route 26 are almost over, as the current phase of the project is right on schedule to reopen the road by Tuesday, March 31.
Eric Bodenweiser, 56, of Georgetown pled no contest on March 18 to two counts of third-degree unlawful sexual contact in Sussex County Superior Court.
Banks Wines & Spirits plans to expand their parking lot, add storage and reconfigure its entrance and exit. But its neighbor is concerned about the effect on stormwater ponds.
On March 10, Banks Wines & Spirits sought preliminary site plan approval, which the Millville Town Council unanimously granted (with Councilman Steve Manieri absent).
A proposal to amend Sussex County Code could streamline the process for certain vendors, such as food trucks, food carts and produce wagons.
The Bethany Beach Town Council will look to adopt its budget for the 2016 fiscal year this Friday, March 20, during the regular monthly council meeting.
Caring for a loved one with a debilitating disease can be a rewarding experience, but it can come with a great deal of stress, exhaustion and, at times, heartbreak.
Next month, Ocean View will hold its annual municipal election, and Bear Trap resident Kent Liddle hopes to serve the town as the new District 4 councilman.
Selbyville Public Library Directory Kelly Kline at the town council meeting on Monday, March 16, expressed her gratitude to the Selbyville Community Club for helping put on Children’s Art Month last month, which was again deemed a success.
Imagination Furniture building upon customer creativity
She had been to all of the high-end furniture design centers. She had flipped through all of the catalogs. She had toured all of the showrooms. But Judy Wickes couldn’t find anyone who could offer her the home media center she envisioned.
Until she discovered Imagination Furniture.
“They listened to all my ideas and design concepts and turned our wall into a reality,” said Wickes. “We could not be happier with the results.”
For founder George Meringolo, it’s a story that embodies the mission of a company that he literally built with his own two hands.
Never return a casserole dish empty.
It was a favorite line of wisdom of the late Willy Cannon, who passed away last month after a five-year battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. But as anyone who knew him can attest, the saying isn’t just about casserole, it’s about giving back as much, if not more, than you receive — which is exactly what Cannon strived for through all of his 57 years.
He donated his time by coaching Little League, teaching his friends skills such as how to navigate the drive on the beach using proper etiquette, and helping neighbors build their houses. He loaned out his truck, his tools, his surfboard and whatever else was needed. He’d offer his advice to anyone who asked, and he’d help anyone he could in any situation that they found themselves in.
“When I was 16 and almost died crashing my car into a telephone pole, I called Willy,” recalled Derek Hendrickson, who said he looked up to Willy as though he was a second father. “He said, ‘I’ll be right there.’”
“Willy could be counted on if you ever needed something,” John Hendrickson — Cannon’s brother in every aspect but blood — highlighted in his eulogy. “If he said he would be there, he would be there.”
His older sister, Susanne Anderson, summed up Willy’s dependability and love for his family in the same way, “Family, in general, was No. 1 with him,” she said. “If you needed something, you could always call him. Everybody just seemed to really warm to him, to really gravitate to him — he was just a good person to be with.”
With the Town of Ocean View set to hold its annual municipal election to elect a resident to the District 4 council seat in April, a Candidates’ Night will be held on Thursday, March 26, at 7 p.m.
Kelsea Dell wouldn’t want to do anything else besides teach eighth-grade math at Selbyville Middle School.
“Even though it can be challenging, with the hormonal changes that goes on between sixth and eighth grade … they’re a super-cool group of kids. It’s fun,” Dell said.
After teaching her first year at SMS, she spent four at Millsboro Middle School and has come home to be named Teacher of the Year for 2015-2016 at her own alma mater.
“I wouldn’t do anything else. I graduated from this district,” Dell said. “I loved Millsboro Middle, [but] this is where I came from. … I wanted to get back home.”
Now, her former teachers are her SMS colleagues.
“That’s the good thing about this area,” she said. “It’s so small — even when you come back, in education they still remember you.”
Volunteer training to be offered April 11 and 16
The Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve (DNERR) is seeking volunteers to assist with DNREC’s annual bay-wide horseshoe crab spawning survey in May and June on the Ted Harvey Wildlife Area, Kitts Hummock and North Bowers beaches.
The Clear Space Theatre Company of Rehoboth Beach announced this week that author Mindi Dickstein, lyricist of “Little Women: The Musical,” will be guest speaker at a workshop on Sunday March 22, at 6:30 pm at the theater. A $5 donation is requested to attend the workshop.