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The Dispatch Priceless

Serving Greater Delmarva Since 1984

February 19, 2021

www.mdcoastdispatch.com

Maryland Passes Relief Package

See Page 9 • File Photo

Masks Required On Fishing Trips?

Snowy Ocean City:

Though it was long gone quickly, a couple inches of snow covered Ocean City last Photos by Chris Parypa Friday morning. Pictured are scenes from south Ocean City around 4 in the morning Friday.

See Page 7 • File Photo

Inlet Village Renovation Planned

See Page 4 • Photo by Bunk Mann

Cutest Pet Of The Month The winner of last month’s Cutest Pet of the Month Contest was Rico, a 4-yearold French bulldog owned by Daniella Celia. See page 32 for this month’s contestants. Submitted Photo


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The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

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February 19, 2021


February 19, 2021

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Food Court Concept Approved For Old Inlet Village Property

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The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – Resort planners this week signed off on a private property plan to completely renovate the south end of the Boardwalk and replace vast sections with a “foodie” destination openair food court. The Ocean City Planning Commission had before it on Wednesday a site plan review for a major renovation of the old Inlet Village property owned by the Trimper family and Windsor Resort at the foot of the Boardwalk. For decades, the site has hosted the Inlet Village, a variety of quaint shops, a couple of restaurants and bars and other attractions. Some of the original buildings will be upgraded and renovated to accommodate upscale food service operations, while others are being demolished to ac-

commodate an open-air food court dining area with views of the Inlet and Assateague to the south. The Frog Bar will be replaced with Bandits Bar and Grill and the building will be expanded to accommodate the food court concept. Existing businesses such as the Inlet Lodge and Harrison’s Harbor Watch will remain in place. The project is currently going through the regulatory process, but thus far there have been no hurdles. For example, last week Windsor Resort applied for and received a parking exception for 23 spaces to accommodate the project. On Wednesday afternoon, the Worcester County Board of License Commissioners (BLC) granted the project’s request for a Class B beer, wine and liquor license for the Bandit’s Bar and Grill element. Later on Wednesday night, the planning commission enthusiastically ap-

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proved the site plan with no concerns raised and little discussion. The only real condition put on the site plan approval was a requirement to work with the Ocean City Development Corporation (OCDC) to ensure the final design is in keeping with the character of the historic downtown area. Zoning Administrator Kay Gordy said the BZA had already approved the parking exception for the project. “They asked for and received a 23space parking waiver for the change of use,” she said. “There is the Inlet lot, the old Whiteside Lot and another lot at Somerset Street. There is ample parking in the downtown area.” Gordy said a staff review of the project’s plans resulted in a favorable recommendation. “They are adding restaurant square footage to the Frog Bar,” she said. “Ba-

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February 19, 2021

sically, everything is in order if you choose to approve this. The staff recommends approving it.” Windsor Resort President Antoinette Bruno provided a description of the overall concept and said the project would help jumpstart the revitalization of the downtown area. “Winsdsor Resort would like to be at the forefront of renovating downtown,” she said. “For the last five years or so, there has been a steady decline in the downtown area, including our properties. The Inlet Village is a little tired and the facades are outdated.” Bruno explained some of the existing buildings are being demolished to create the open-air food court concept. Other existing buildings will be renovated and turned into stalls, or mini pop-up restaurants offering a wide range of upscale food and drinks. “The property has one-of-a-kind views of the Inlet and Assateague,” she said. “It’s an ideal location for foodie tourism. This will bring a nice array of food to the south end of the Boardwalk.” Project Architect Keith Iott said the original plan was to create a free-standing building as the centerpiece of the food court, but the decision was ultimately made to expand on the existing Frog Bar building. “All of the exteriors are being renovated, including the siding and the roofs,” he said. “The addition is now going to be attached to the Bandits Bar and Grill. It’s not going to be a free-standing building. It’s going to create more open-air space. The whole objective is to maximize the views with a lot of open space.” For the most part, the planning commission gushed over the concept, including commissioner Palmer Gillis, who called it “a very exciting project.” Bruno said the concept was an upscale food court. Some early concepts include a Greek-style fish fry restaurant, an upscale taco restaurant which will mill their own corn and make tortillas from scratch. Another offering will be authentic lobster rolls. Bruno said the company is still looking for a barbeque concept and an ice cream shop concept. She said visitors will be able to pick and choose from the various food stalls and enjoy the offerings in the open-air food court. “Guests will be able to order from any of the stalls with just one payment,” she said. “A food runner will bring guests their food, or they can pick it up at the carryout window. They will be able to walk out and sit in the open areas and enjoy the views with their food and drinks.” The only real condition placed on the site plan approval was the requirement to work with the OCDC on the final designs including building styles and color schemes, for example. “The OCDC Downtown Design Committee does support the renovation work and overall plan, which will create a food court environment with outdoor seating,” OCDC Executive Director Glenn Irwin said. “This new use can become an anchor project for the downtown area that will add to the vitality of the southern end of the Boardwalk.”


February 19, 2021

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

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Worcester School Board Unanimously Approves New Contract For Taylor

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

BY CHARLENE SHARPE

STAFF WRITER

Room Dedicated:

The Worcester County Board of Education officially named its meeting room in Newark after long-time Board of Education member Sara Thompson. The Berlin resident stepped down last year after 27 years of service on the school board. Thompson is pictured with Superintendent of Schools Lou Taylor and Board President Eric Cropper. Submitted Photo

NEWARK – The Worcester County Board of Education voted unanimously to reappoint Superintendent Lou Taylor for another four-year term. Taylor, who has led Worcester County Public Schools for the last five years, was reappointed for a second four-year term on Tuesday. He was initially appointed interim superintendent in 2016 upon the resignation of Jerry Wilson. Taylor has been with Worcester County Public Schools for 37 years previously serving as principal at Stephen Decatur High School, where he graduated, for 17 years and as a physical education tea-

February 19, 2021

cher at then-Berlin Middle School. “This is an exciting day for Worcester County Public Schools,” said Eric Cropper, president of the school board. School board member Todd Ferrante made a motion to reappoint Taylor during Tuesday’s meeting on terms previously negotiated. The motion passed unanimously. Ferrante praised Taylor’s leadership during a difficult year and said he’d been a great communicator throughout the pandemic. “He might not always agree with you, but he will sit down and listen,” Ferrante said. Other board members also expressed appreciation for Taylor. “His leadership has been and continues to be remarkable,” said school board member Bill Gordy. Taylor said it had been an honor to serve for the past five years. He acknowledged that there had never been a year as challenging as 2020 but said that knowing he was working on behalf of local students he was able to get through it. “I think now is one of the most important times in our country’s history for the education of our young people,” he said. Taylor added that he worked every day to ensure that local kids were shown love and respect in their schools. “I try to come in each and every day to give the best I can give,” he said. Taylor thanked board members for their confidence in him and praised their efforts as well as those of county government. “We’ve taken 50 steps back because of COVID,” he said. “We’ve got a lot of work to do when we come out of this situation.” He said he’d continue to do his part to ensure Worcester County’s students received a quality education. “Thank you for this opportunity,” he said. “I’m excited for the future of our school system.” According to Carrie Sterrs, the school system’s coordinator of public relations and special programs, the terms of Taylor’s new contract are very similar to those of the last one. His new salary, effective July 1, will be $210,000. His current salary, based on his first contract in 2016, is $186,023. As a comparison, Taylor’s salary is slightly below that of Wicomico County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Donna Hanlin, who signed a new four-year contract last year for an annual salary of $212,000. “However, it is important to note that unlike many other superintendent contract negotiations, Mr. Taylor continues to remain committed to keeping any annual salary adjustment in lockstep with our teachers and support staff,” Sterrs said. “This means that in years two, three and four of his contract, he will only receive the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) that our teachers and staff receive.”


CDC Directive Requires Masks On Fishing Vessels

February 19, 2021

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – New federal directives from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued last week include stringent mask requirements on all modes of conveyance, including commercial fishing vessels and other vessels that carry groups of people. Despite waning COVID-19 positivity numbers, the Biden Administration through the Centers for Disease Control issued stringent mask requirements for all modes of conveyance, including commercial vessels, party boats, tour boats and, presumably, recreational sportfishing boats. While the local commercial and recreational fishing industries are still sorting out exactly what it means for them, and their passengers and crews, the stricter mask requirement could have a significant impact on the industries as a new spring and summer season approaches. The CDC order states “persons must wear masks over the mouth and nose when traveling on conveyances into and within the United States.” The order defines public maritime vessels, including ferries, and all forms of water-based transportation under the definitions spelled out. The order requires passengers and crews to wear masks while on vessels from the time they board to the time they

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

disembark including the duration of travel. The order also requires the Coast Guard to strictly enforce the order. Congressman Andy Harris (R-Md.) wasted no time calling into question the section of the order regarding commercial watermen, party boats for hire, and tour boats, for example. “While appropriate on some modes of transportation where social distancing with strangers cannot be maintained, this mandate is overly broad and leading to unseen frustration,” he said. “The Coast Guard has issued guidance that all commercial fishing vessel occupants will be required to wear masks, and that they will enforce this mandate.” Harris said the order is overreaching for an activity that largely takes place outdoors, on the water and in the fresh air. “Our watermen are completely outdoors, often numbering no more than three per vessel and have been working together without interruption since the beginning of this pandemic,” he said. “They are at extremely low-risk by the nature of their work.” Harris said the Biden Administration and the CDC should be directing their attention on other high-spread risk areas than worrying about the open seas. He also said the Coast Guard has bigger fish to fry, so to speak, then worrying about enforcing a mask requirement out on the water in the fresh air. “I urge the CDC to come forward and

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clarify this mandate, which includes sleeping while onboard, lacks legitimate scientific backing for small craft fishing vessels with minimal persons working onboard in an outdoor environment,” he said. “Rather than being Biden mask police for a low transmission industry, the Coast Guard should be spending their valuable time doing their core duties, especially drug enforcement.” Locally, it is unclear what the new directive means for the resort’s vast sportfishing industry, along with the head boats and evening tour boats. Captain Franky Pettolina of the Last Call, said

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his sportfishing colleagues are sorting through the language in the CDC order, but it appears on the surface to include passengers and crews on recreational fishing boats. “It’s going to be tough on people,” he said. “The charters are going to experience more seasickness because of this. No two ways about it. Last year, I had some folks that wore masks because they were concerned about COVID. They took them off as soon as they started feeling claustrophobic and tunnel vision because of them, which are common symptoms of seasickness.”


OC Council Supports Marlin Fest Concept At Downtown Park

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The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – Plans for a proposed Marlin Fest event at the downtown recreation complex in conjunction with the White Marlin Open (WMO) in August were endorsed by Ocean City officials this week. It’s been said some of the changes borne out of the COVID pandemic will likely stick around for the near future, and that appears to be the case with planning for this summer’s White Marlin Open. Last year, out of necessity in the midst to the COVID pandemic and associated restrictions, the White Marlin Open went off as planned albeit in a greatly modified format. Nothing changed in terms of the tournament itself, and the daily weigh-ins

were held at host Harbour Island just as they have been for decades. In fact, the White Marlin set a new prize money record with more than $6.8 million awarded to winners on board the 433 registered boats. However, because of COVID restrictions, the thousands of spectators that typically pour into Harbour Island each day during the tournament were not allowed to do so. Instead, event organizer White Marlin Open, Inc. came up with a modified plan to open a venue for spectators at the downtown recreation complex between 3rd and 4th streets. The bayside venue included a large LED screen for viewing the WMO weighins at the scale and open dock areas along with waterfront from which to spectators could view the sportfishing boats come in as they made their way to the

scale. There were some light refreshments offered, but the event was generally low-key and attendance was light. On Monday, White Marlin Open, Inc. officials presented a plan to create a Marlin Fest event at the downtown recreation complex during the tournament in the first full week in August. The proposed event would be significantly larger in scale than the rather modest satellite viewing area last year. The plan calls for the same big-screen video monitor and open areas from which spectators can watch the boats come in. However, the plan also calls for vendor tents selling WMO and other merchandise, In addition, the plan calls for two bars selling beer, wine and alcoholic beverages, numerous food trucks and entertainment, all within the footprint of the recreation complex.

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According to the plan, the beer and wine sales would benefit the Ocean City Development Corporation (OCDC), which would man the booths with volunteers and share in the proceeds. WMO officials in a memo describing Marlin Fest made it clear the intent was not to supplant the traditional venue at Harbour Island, but rather augment it. “The concept of this event is not intended to take the place of having spectators gather at Harbour Island to watch the weigh-ins live, but to provide another option that allows a larger, open space for viewing and is more family-friendly,” the memo reads. “This location will provide another option to view the weighins live on the big screen and watch the boats on their way to Harbour Island. Nationally-recognized sponsors and local vendors will be welcome to participate in the event.” The Marlin Fest events are scheduled to be held from Monday, Aug. 2 to Friday, Aug. 6 from 3 p.m. each day until the scale at Harbour Island closes at 9:15 p.m. Special Events Coordinator Lisa Mitchell outlined the proposed event for the Mayor and Council on Tuesday. “This year, they would like to expand operations at 3rd Street,” she said. “They would like to offer food and drink and have more vendors and entertainment.” With the additional cost to produce the event, WMO organizers were initially going to seek a $25,000 contribution from the Mayor and Council. However, after a discussion with special events staff, the WMO organizers are going to apply for a tourism development grant from the town’s Tourism Advisory Board (TAB). There are some details yet to be worked out. The event organizers are going to consult with the Worcester County Health Department to ensure all the state and local COVID directives that are still in place in August are adhered to. The Ocean City Fire Marshal’s Office also needs to sign off on the event plans. In addition, the Worcester County Board of License Commissioners also needs to sign off on the off-premise sale of beer, wine and liquor at the event. The OCDC will be the applicant for the liquor license for the event with the BLC, although WMO Attorney Joe Moore said he believed that would be a formality. “We will go with the OCDC to the BLC for approval,” he said. “We’re confident they will approve this plan. It’s a major economic driver for the town of Ocean City.” Moore said he was confident Marlin Fest would prove to be a nice adjunct for the WMO. “We believe we have a good plan,” he said. “Last year was successful down there, but we think this year will be an even better plan.” There is still a formal Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) required outlining each party’s formal responsibilities for the proposed event. Nonetheless, the council voted unanimously to support the event.


Franchot Reports Nearly All Payments Will Be Sent By Friday

February 19, 2021

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – Maryland Governor Larry Hogan on Monday signed the state’s Relief Act of 2021 and the state’s comptroller’s officer on Tuesday began sending out stimulus payments to eligible families across the state. With the federal government stalling on a larger and more anticipated stimulus package, Hogan before the start of the current General Assembly session rolled out the state’s version of a COVID-19 emergency relief package, which, among other things, will provide direct stimulus payments for eligible lowto moderate-income families in Maryland. Eligibility for the stimulus payments is based on the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), an option available to families with low-to-moderate income levels. Those who claimed the EITC last year are eligible for the direct stimulus payments, which total $300 for individuals and $500 for families. The income levels for the EITC eligibility are fairly low, however, an estimated 400,000 Marylanders will receive the direct relief. In addition, the Relief Act of 2021 signed into law by Hogan on Monday repeals all state and local income taxes on

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

unemployment benefits, providing another $180 million for those who have lost their jobs or have been laid off during the pandemic. The relief package also includes sales tax credits for small businesses, at a rate of $3,000 per month for four months, or about $12,000. The package also extends unemployment tax relief for small businesses, insulating them against significant increases in unemployment benefits among other safeguards for small businesses struggling during the pandemic. Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot, a democratic candidate for governor in 2022, on Tuesday held a virtual press conference to announce how and when the stimulus payments might be hitting the mailboxes of those eligible. Franchot said with the governor signing the emergency legislation on Monday, those eligible could see payments hitting their bank accounts by the end of this week. “The payments are going out of our office and are getting sent to banks,” he said. “Many will see payments by the end of the week. That’s happening today. 98% of payments will be processed by Friday.” Franchot said his office is ramping up SEE PAGE 10

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… Hogan Signs Relief Act After Legislature’s Swift Passage

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The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

FROM PAGE 9 its website and hotline to field a myriad of questions about the direct stimulus payments, how to take advantage of the unemployment tax relief, the various programs for small businesses and others, taking a modest swipe at some of the failings of the state’s unemployment system during COVID. “You’re not going to get a busy signal,” he said. “You’re going to get a live, friendly voice on the other end.” Franchot also addressed growing concerns about the limited eligibility for the direct stimulus payments in Mary-

land. “A lot of people are confused and frustrated that they are not included in this package,” he said. “We didn’t make the rules. We are not your governor. I know how important these payments are right now. I advocated for a package that was bold.” Nonetheless, the comptroller praised his colleagues in Annapolis for getting a state relief package approved and signed in a short time, although, again, he said he believes it comes up short. “I applaud the House and Senate for getting this passed, but I believe it falls

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February 19, 2021

short,” he said. “We’re the richest state in the richest country in the world, and we have the resources to do better than this.” Franchot said the modest direct stimulus payments will provide little relief for many Maryland families struggling during the pandemic. “No one believes a $300 or $500 check will make a dent in piles of debt for many Maryland families in need,” he said. “One-third of Maryland is in a deep recession we have an obligation to those families. We also have an obligation to the other two-thirds that are doing okay.” It’s important to note Maryland’s relief package is just that, a leg up to the state’s families and small businesses in need until the federal government can get a much larger stimulus package approved. “I just want to emphasize this is a small program,” he said. “This is not the large federal program we’re hearing so much about. It’s a very narrow relief plan for deserving people who need it. So many people are suffering right now.” For his part, Hogan on Monday signed the legislation he had pushed for since the beginning of the General Assembly session. “I introduced this emergency legislation at the start of the legislative session just a few weeks ago,” he said. “I said there wasn’t anything that could possibly be more important for the legislature to

pass, and I asked the legislature to work with us in a bipartisan way to help those Marylanders who really needed our help. Today, I want to sincerely thank the leaders on both sides of the aisle for coming together to pass this measure with near unanimous support.” Hogan praised state lawmakers for continuing to set an example in terms of providing relief for its citizens most in need. “At a time when so many Americans have stopped believing that democracy can work for them, as Washington remains divided and gridlocked, Maryland has once again shown the nation that both parties can still come together, that we can put the peoples’ priorities first, and that can deliver real, bipartisan, common sense solutions to the problems that face us,” he said. Hogan said despite a recent decline in some of the state’s key COVID metrics, there was still a long way to go. “We still face a long and difficult winter ahead, and many Marylanders are still in need, but our vaccination rate is rising every day,” he said. “As we get more shots into the arms of our most vulnerable citizens, and all of our key health metrics are continuing to decline, and now with this relief act being signed into law, even more tax relief and economic stimulus help is on the way for our struggling families and small businesses.”

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School Input Sought On Proposed Calendars OC Renews Street Lease With Seacrets

Page 12

BY BETHANY HOOPER

STAFF WRITER

SALISBURY – Community members will have an opportunity to share their thoughts on two draft calendars for the 2021-2022 school year. Last week, Kim Miles, Wicomico County Public Schools’ assistant superintendent for student and family services, presented the Wicomico County Board of Education with two draft calendars for the 2021-2022 academic year. The first calendar, Draft A, features a post-Labor Day start of Sept. 7 and an end date of June 14, while the second calendar, Draft B, features a pre-Labor Day start of Aug. 30 and an end date of June 8. “I would like to thank the committee that worked on the development of these two draft calendars,” she said.

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“My reason for being before you today is to seek your approval to post for public review and comment the two drafts.” In addition to the start and end dates, Miles told board members last week the two calendars varied in the timing of professional days. She noted, however, that the Thanksgiving break, winter break and spring break were scheduled for the same days in both drafts. “The changes that are noted in relation to ending dates for marking terms will be the professional days that follow those end term dates,” she said. “Another change from the past is our professional days following a marking term will be planned at this point as virtual learning in the morning with professional development in the afternoon. We believe there is great benefit for students and for staff. It’s definitely a time saver.”

Miles also noted that make-up dates for inclement weather also varied across both drafts. Draft A, she noted had make-up days scheduled for Dec. 20, April 14 and June 15, while Draft B had make-up days scheduled for Dec. 20, June 9 and June 10. “We are seeking board approval to be able to present these drafts and post it on our website accompanied by a survey that will help us gather input not only on which calendar is preferred by each individual responding, but as well as an open narrative response, or comment box, with additional input,” she said. After further discussion, the board voted unanimously to approve the first reading of the draft calendars for the 2021-2022 school year. The survey for both calendars will be posted on the school system’s website, www.wcboe.org.

February 19, 2021

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – In what was called a win-win situation for both parties, resort officials this week approved a lease renewal for a portion of 49th Street for a popular midtown restaurant and nightclub. The Mayor and Council had before them on Feb. 9 a request to renew a one-year lease with Seacrets for a roughly 250-foot section of city-owned roadway at the west end of 49th Street. The town leases the 250-foot section on the west end of 49th Street for $2,400 on a year-to-year basis and the time to renew the agreement had been reached. The lease agreement is considered a win-win situation for both parties. It allows Seacrets to control and manage the area directly in front of the establishment. Restaurant staff directs pedestrian foot traffic, regulates vehicle movement and stages areas for taxi cab pickups and deliveries and other management and control crowds. “The town owns a portion of 49th Street of about 250 feet,” said City Manager Doug Miller. “We’ve come up with a win-win situation in which we lease that area to them for $2,400 per year.” Miller said the benefit to the town, apart from the modest $2,400 lease, is the assistance provided to the Ocean City Police Department in that area. With Seacrets’ vast bar security operation controlling the area for the most part, the OCPD does not have to devote as much attention to it. “The win for them is they control and maintain the entrance to their facility,” said Miller. “The win for us is it makes crowd control and alcohol enforcement easier.” The Police Commission had forwarded a favorable recommendation to the full Mayor and Council at its last meeting. On Tuesday, the Mayor and Council approved extending the oneyear lease for $2,400 unanimously with little discussion. The approval extends the lease for another year with the term ending Jan. 1, 2022. The actual lease is lengthy and full of legalese, but lays out the conditions by which Seacrets can utilize the portion of city-owned roadway. The leased property can only be used by the establishment for the purposes of controlling pedestrian and vehicle traffic and only signage for that purpose is allowed. No tents, tables or other usage is allowed on the property without prior consent from the town, for example. The area cannot be used for parking, with the exception of deliveries. In addition, the lease as written indemnifies the town against any liability for loss, damage, injury or death in the leased area.


Thunderbirds Booked For OC Air Show

February 19, 2021

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – Buoyed by the announcement the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds were returning this year, resort officials this week approved dateholds for the OC Air Show for 2022 and 2023. It was never in question if the OC Air Show would return to the resort this summer after last year’s show was moved to August because of COVID restrictions. What was in question, however, was who would be the headline act in 2021. As of a month or so ago, neither the U.S. Navy Blue Angels or the USAF Thunderbirds had Ocean City on their schedules. In addition, neither of the popular jet demonstration teams appeared to have gaps in their 2021 show schedules that coincided with Ocean City’s event slated for June. In recent years, the Blue Angels and the Thunderbirds had typically alternated each year as the headliner for the OC Air Show. The picture became clear last week when OC Air Show officials announced the Thunderbirds will headline a lineup that also includes the F-22 Raptor demonstration team along with numerous other military and civilian demonstration teams. Last year, a modified OC Air Show was moved from its planned dates in

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June to mid-August because of COVID concerns. The event is expected to return this year June 19-20. With little debate this week, the council unanimously approved the requested dates in 2022 and 2023 with an agreement to update the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the show producers and the town. Last year, the town had supplied $35,000 in funding for the air show along with other in-kind services for the event. However, when the event was postponed and rescheduled, the air show producers asked for and received an additional $100,000 from the town to offset revenue losses and recoup expenses from modifying the pandemic-friendly event. This year, the town is going back to the original financial commitment to the air show with $35,000 in funding. There was one other issue to resolve on Tuesday. Last year, the town suspended the express bus service from the convention center and the Park-and-Ride in West Ocean City to the event’s show center at 16th Street because of COVID restrictions. This year, the promoter has asked for the express service for performers, staff and VIP ticket holders. It was determined on Tuesday the bus service could be restored, but it had to be available to the public or else it would be considered a charter.

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Officials Discuss Vaccinations At Pines Town Hall

Page 14

BY BETHANY HOOPER

STAFF WRITER

OCEAN PINES – Discussions on vaccine allocation, distribution and waiting lists highlighted a COVID-19 virtual town hall meeting last week. Last Thursday, the Ocean Pines Association held a virtual town hall focused on news and information regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. The meeting, moderated by Ocean Pines Association Communications Committee Chair Jennifer Cropper Rines, featured a presentation from Worcester County Health Department Public Affairs Officer Travis Brown and questions from the audience. “I think the main questions everyone has right now will be about COVID19 vaccine and registration within the

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county,” Brown said. “Right now, as of last week, we’ve moved to a single central waiting list that includes all clinics operated by the Worcester County Health Department.” On Feb. 2, the health department updated how it registers individuals for COVID-19 vaccine clinics with the introduction of a single central waiting list for all clinics operated by the agency. Because vaccine supply is limited, health department officials say they do not expect to post any Worcester County Health Department clinics onto the statewide registration website, MarylandVax.org, for the next several weeks. Instead, the agency is directing anyone who would like to get a COVID-19 vaccine and is eligible, to call 667-253-2140 so staff can manually add their names to the central waiting list.

As of last Thursday, Brown said, the central waiting list had grown to include roughly 5,000 registrants eligible for the vaccine under phases 1A, 1B or 1C of Maryland’s distribution plan. He noted the health department continues to work through that waiting list as vaccines become available. “It’s a mixture of first-come-first-serve and then by age,” Brown said. “So anyone who is over the age of 65, the earlier you signed up the earlier you will get a call or message indicating there is a spot available. We do also have allocation set aside each week from the amount we receive from the state for educators. That’s usually a third of what we receive.” Currently, the health department receives about 300 doses of the Moderna vaccine each week, Brown said. However, demand continues to exceed sup-

February 19, 2021

ply. “The allocation is done by population,” he said. “Our year-round population is about 52,000 or 54,000. Our seasonal population is somewhere north of 250,000. Our belief is that we are getting a lot more than our general population people coming to schedule the vaccine. So using that 52,000 number isn’t really fair in terms of how much we’re being allocated, so we have requested to get more.” Officials and town hall participants applauded the health department’s efforts. As of last Thursday, Worcester County had the second-highest percentage of residents who had received the first dose of the vaccine. “We are second to Kent County,” said Del. Wayne Hartman. “But you have to understand our population is almost three times that of Kent County. So you guys are truly doing an amazing job.” When asked if the central waiting list included clinics offered at local pharmacies and retail stores, Brown said it did not. “Each entity has their own waitlist and procedure all operating under the same phase system and rules,” he said. Resident Susan LaRue also asked if an individual had to be a Worcester County resident to receive a vaccine through the health department. Brown noted it was a topic on which the health department was seeking clarification from the state. “At this time, no,” he said. “The directive that we have gotten from the state, as far as we understand it, is that because the vaccine is a Maryland resource and because it’s coming from a federal program, we are not supposed to put hard residency restrictions on who can sign up for a COVID vaccine.” Brown also fielded questions about the state’s phased vaccination plan. He said Phase 2 – which includes those ages 16 to 64 at increased risk for COVID-19 illness and certain essential workers – would be introduced once a majority of Phase 1 had been vaccinated. “We don’t have a timeline yet for when we expect to get to Phase 2,” he said. “The understanding is it will likely be a state shift, that we will more or less be moving together.” For more information on local COVID19 vaccination clinics, visit www.worcesterhealth.org. To register for the health department’s waiting list, call 667-2532140. “We are, here on the shore, one of the leading areas in terms of getting those doses out,” Brown said. “Not a single drop has spoiled or not been used effectively. So any doses we get we are making sure and committed to getting those shots into arms, immediately and efficiently.” A video of last week’s town hall meeting can be found on the Ocean Pines Association YouTube page. Participants included Hartman, Worcester County Commissioner Chip Bertino and Pat Schrawder, district representative for Sen. Mary Beth Carozza.


February 19, 2021

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

Page 15


Page 16

Articulating Buses Coming To Resort

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

February 19, 2021

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – Resort transportation officials have accepted as many as four 60-foot articulating buses, referred to often as “super sweepers,” from the Maryland Transit Administration in what appears to be a high reward-low risk move. The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) is retiring many of its 60foot articulating buses and has offered the Town of Ocean City as many as three or four of them for a simple donation of $1 each. The MTA is retiring its 2008 articulating buses because they have met their useful life criteria and will be replaced, but the buses, often called “super sweepers” or “vacuum cleaners,” still have plenty of life in them to meet the needs in a seasonal resort. On Feb. 9, the Ocean City Transportation Committee discussed accepting what is essentially a donation of as many as four of the MTA’s articulating buses. The $1 fee is included basically for contract purposes for the transfer. The town of Ocean City currently owns two 60-foot articulating buses, which are basically a traditional 40-foot standard bus connected to a connected additional passenger compartment. The articulating buses, with a capacity of around 100, can absorb many more passengers in a short amount of time than the traditional buses. They are extremely useful in absorbing big crowds on bus stops, especially after major events such as the air show or after the Fourth of July fireworks, for example. Again, the town currently has two articulating buses with a brand-new third expected to be delivered this fall. Transportation officials have long desired six articulating buses to mix in with its fleet of standard 40-foot buses and accepting the donation from the MTA would bring that to the desired number, according to Transportation Director Mark Rickards. “Right now, we have two articulating buses,” he said. “They are lifesavers out there. I recommend accept-

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ing the three to four to bring us up to six.” Accepting the articulating buses appears to be a high reward, low risk proposition for the town. The buses are a hybrid diesel-electric model, meaning they have a battery pack and charge themselves as they go. They require no charging stations or charging pads, for example. The only potential downside is if one or more of them break down during the summer, the transportation department currently does not have staff trained or the equipment needed to repair them. If one or more breaks down in the short term, the towing and repair would have to be outsourced. However, that risk is minimal. Even if one of the donated articulating buses goes down and the town did not want to expend the funds needed to repair it, the donated buses still have value. A 60-foot articulating bus with useful life remaining could easily be sold on govdeals.com or ebay, for example, or even cannibalized for parts or scrap. In short, they have far more value than the $1 donation to the MTA, according to Administrative Transit Manager Brian Connor. “If they break down, we have the ability to dispose of them and recoup the losses,” he said. “There isn’t a lot of risk.” The eventual cost to train fleet mechanics and obtain the necessary equipment to service the hybrid articulating buses would likely cost around $40,000, a cost worth bearing, according to Council Secretary and committee member Tony DeLuca. “It’s a $40,000 risk for a value of $2 million,” he said. “It’s worth the risk for what we get in terms of service, especially with COVID and the desire for more spacing.” For his part, Rickards recommended going forward with the donation. “I think it’s a prudent decision,” he said. “If one goes down and we decide to dispose of it, we stand to gain revenue.” The committee voted unanimously to forward a favorable recommendation to the Mayor and Council.

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Worcester School Calendar Selected

February 19, 2021

Early Release Option Preferred Among Most

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Page 17

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NEWARK – School system officials approved a calendar for the 2021-2022 school year that tentatively ends the school year June 14, 2022. On Tuesday, the Worcester County Board of Education voted to approve a calendar for the next school year that goes from Sept. 7 to June 14, 2022. “It’s pretty straightforward,” Superintendent Lou Taylor said. In December, Carrie Sterrs, the school system’s coordinator of public relations and special programs, presented the school board with two calendar options. One was designed to end the school year as early as possible while the other included more frequent and longer breaks throughout the school year. While COVID-19 prevented the school system from forming its usual calendar committee, the school community was able to weigh in on the calendar options through a survey that was conducted in January. “It was conducted entirely online,” Sterrs said, adding that there had been 1,209 responses, which was nearly double last year’s participation. According to Sterrs, the majority of the survey responses, 53%, came from parents while 37% of responses came from employees. Community members accounted for 4% of responses, as did students. Bus contractors accounted for 2% of responses. Sterrs said 63% of parents preferred the early release calendar and 58% of employees preferred the early release calendar. The other categories of respondents also preferred the early release option. “A very clear majority preferred the first option,” Sterrs said. The early release calendar begins the school year Sept. 7, the day after Labor Day, and ends the school year with a half day on June 14. Schools will be closed for winter break from Dec. 23 through Jan. 2 and will be closed for spring break April 14-18. Schools will be closed to students on a handful of professional days throughout the year as well. The last day of school is set for June 14 but will depend on whether inclement weather makeup days are needed. Taylor, who formally recommended the early release calendar to the board for approval, said like parents, he preferred the early release option. “The sooner we get our kids out the better,” he said, adding that many teenagers had summer jobs they wanted to be available for in June. “Many of our kids are needed in the workforce in the Ocean City area.”

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Ocean City Aims For Modified Springfest In May

Page 18

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – There will likely be a 30th Annual Springfest in Ocean City this year, but the event will be considerably modified because of ongoing state COVID directives. Throughout much of the last year, most special events were either postponed or greatly modified because of ongoing COVID restrictions. Already this spring, the annual St. Patrick’s Parade has been scrubbed and other significant events have fallen victim to the ongoing

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pandemic. The next major event on the calendar is Springfest and it will go off for the 30th year, but it will be significantly modified to meet the existing state COVID-19 directives still in place. Special Events Director Frank Miller presented the modified Springfest plans to the Mayor and Council on Tuesday. The event will still take place on the Inlet lot as usual, but the food and craft tents will be spread out and open-sided with strict adherence to social distancing, crowd size limitations and the wearing of masks in the event footprint, for example.

Throughout the pandemic, Miller has been charged with coming up with modified plans for many of the town’s special events, including the walk-through Winterfest of Lights, and his plans for a modified Springfest were well received on Tuesday. “We have a unique opportunity to create a great event and still end up in the black,” he said. “There is no easy answer. Of course, we can always eliminate it again altogether, but we think we can work with these parameters.” In terms of food service, there will be a food tent, but the tent will be open on all sides to create an outdoor feel. There will likely be less vendors and they will be further spread apart. There will be tables in the food tent, along with an adjacent beer garden with tables, but visitors will be encouraged to purchase food and beverages, find a seat and consume it before moving on. Socializing around the tables will not be allowed and there will be a controlled entrance and exit point to limit crowd sizes within the food tent. “We know we’re going to be affected by ongoing directives,” he said. “The key is how we adjust to those directives. We can do food service, but it will be modified. There will be less vendors and the food tent will be open on the sides. People will have to sit down and eat where they purchase.” In terms of the traditional arts and crafts, there will be craft tents, but they will have wide, open airy walkways. Miller

February 19, 2021

said he expects less vendors, but interest in the spring event has been solid. The vendors will be properly distanced with plenty of open space. The vendors will strictly adhere to the state sanitation guidelines and there will be sanitizer and wipes throughout the venue. Perhaps the most noticeable change will be the entertainment. Current state directives do not allow for large gatherings for indoor concerts, so there will be no entertainment tent and no ticketed national act shows. Instead, there will be a single outdoor stage on the beach facing the ocean for smaller free concerts. “We can do some live entertainment outside,” he said. “Spectators will have to adhere to spacing and guidelines and it will be limited to around 250 people. We can work around that.” In terms of the cost of producing the event, Miller said he was confident Springfest would end up in the black. Estimated decreases in expenses include lower tent rental costs, the removal of the custom inside stage with lighting and sound systems and, of course, the lack of national acts for ticketed concerts. The net decrease in expenses is estimated at $173,000. However, losses are expected on the revenue side because of fewer vendors, decreases in beer, wine and merchandise sales and the loss of three days of ticketed concerts. Miller estimated the net gain on the revenue side at around $30,000 to $40,000.


OC Cautiously Waiting On Ramping Up Bus Deployments

February 19, 2021

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – Perhaps providing more evidence of the cautious optimism seeping in around the resort, just when the appropriate time to begin ramping up the municipal bus deployment was a topic of discussion this week. Little by little, there are growing signs resort officials are gaining more confidence in a return to some sense of normalcy in the coming season. Two weeks ago, Gov. Larry Hogan lifted the 10 p.m. mandated closing time for restaurants and bars. Although the St. Patrick’s Parade has been canceled this year, the Tourism Commission last week got a look at a draft plan for a series of fireworks shows, concerts, drive-in movies and other special events planned for the summer. That’s all welcome news for a resort business community struggling to get through the pandemic. This month, another Ocean City restaurant, Abbey Burger, announced it was closing its resort operation permanently, largely because of COVID impacts. Bourbon Street on the Beach will be relocated from its 116th Street location to the Abbey Burger site near Northside Park. There has been a steady stream of good news and bad news on the COVID front in recent weeks, but it appears from some recent discussions and actions by resort officials, a sense of optimism about the 2021 season is starting to seep in. Such was the case during last Tuesday’s Transportation Committee meeting during a discussion about the appropriate time to begin ramping up the municipal bus deployment and schedule. The municipal bus system has taken its lumps over the last year with overall revenue down about 74%, or about $400,000. Through much of the fall and winter, the municipal bus service has been running at a bare minimum. Transportation Director Mark Rickards explained the current deployment and when a consideration might be given to increasing it. “Right now, we’re running 6 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. with one bus in each direction and 40-minute wait times,” he said. “We will continue that unless we see something that changes. By mid-April, we expect to be at 20 minutes when the weekends pick up.” Public Works Director Hal Adkins said it would not be a major chore to ramp up bus deployments when the demand calls for it. The town has the drivers and buses ready to go when needed. He said it’s just difficult to have a crystal ball to predict when that demand increases. “We’re going to keep watching it,” he said. “When we do return to some sort of normalcy, we will adjust accordingly. It’s a very flexible schedule.” Mayor Rick Meehan cautioned against pulling the trigger too quickly. “We’re cautiously optimistic,” he said. “Maybe April is too early. Just because we have the buses and the drivers does-

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

Page 19

Flexible Schedule Planned During Spring Based On Crowds, Demand

n’t mean we need to ramp up that early.” However, Council Secretary and committee member Tony DeLuca said the town should enter the spring season optimistic there would be an increased demand for the municipal bus service. “I recommend we look at it really hard in April,” he said. “I’d rather err on the side of providing good service.” Meehan agreed there was time to follow what is going on with the COVID situation and the approach of the spring season and adjust the bus deployment schedule accordingly. “Let’s watch it closely,” he said. “When the crowds arrive, we want to

provide a level of service they are accustomed to.” In terms of recruitment, Rickards said the transportation department has the drivers it needs right now to meet the deployment schedule and then some. It was learned some drivers are still collecting full or partial unemployment benefits because there simply isn’t enough work for them. Rickards said the recruitment process began in earnest last month and is going well thus far. “Right now, we’re at 60, including 54 on the payroll and six more to be added,” he said. “We would like to double that number by Memorial Day, or at least

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Page 20

Tech Students Participate In Debate

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February 19, 2021

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NEWARK – Worcester Technical High School students shared their views on environmental issues ranging from wind farms to a new Bay Bridge span during a virtual debate last week. On Feb. 11, students in Valerie Zienty’s senior pre-engineering class at Worcester Tech participated in an environmental policy debate moderated by Delegate Charles Otto and Berlin Mayor Zack Tyndall. They went back and forth over the merits of electric cars, the potential of wave energy and the fear of nuclear power accidents during the Zoom session. “I think it is very important to develop relationships with other people in constructive, collaborative ways,” Zienty said. Early in the semester, Zienty said her students talked about politics and the impact political beliefs had on people’s lives. Some teenagers acknowledged that they avoided discussing politics unless they knew they were talking to people who held similar views. They said that in a very polarized political climate, they didn’t want the unneeded stress and disagree-

ment that would come from any potentially political discussion. “So I tried to develop a project that emphasizes research, respect, and collaboration,” Zienty said. “My students are talented, creative, resourceful, and have something to bring to the table. This debate, moderated by local and state policymakers, can foster development of a successful community, where people buy into a common good that they can collaborate to reach.” During last week’s debate, students offered various viewpoints on wind farms, electric cars and solar energy, among other environmental topics. Otto and Tyndall praised students for their efforts to work “across the aisle” and understand each other’s opinions when they differed. Tyndall told Zienty’s class he enjoyed the session. “We had a pretty healthy debate this afternoon,” he said. He went on to encourage students to take some responsibility when they were interested in a topic and to look at issues comprehensively. He added that there was always a chance for human error. “As consumers of information, don’t take it from just one source,” he said.


Jellyfish Festival Plans To Return Labor Day Weekend

February 19, 2021

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – Struck down twice last year because of the pandemic, it appears the Jellyfish Festival will be held on Labor Day weekend this year after the date change was approved this week. The inaugural Jellyfish Festival was held in June 2019 on the beach downtown in an area north of the pier. It featured national, regional and local acts with theme-based entertainment on three state-of-the-art stages along with family-friendly interactive events including surfing and skateboarding, ultimate frisbee, a fat-tire bike zone and other amenities with vendors in the Jellyfish Tentacle Village. Last winter, local event promoter Brad Hoffman and his private-sector company Live Wire Media announced plans to bring back a decidedly scaled-back Jellyfish Festival in June on the beach downtown. The event would have included a scaled-down and less ambitious live music lineup featuring local bands, other family-friendly events and contests and the Jellyfish Village for vendors. The Jellyfish Festival was set for last June 27-28 earlier in 2020. The COVID pandemic arrived and the festival planned for late June was scrubbed and later rescheduled for mid-September last

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Wine Fest Conflict Cited With Initial Date

year. However, state COVID directives for events and crowd sizes had not abated by then and the Jellyfish Festival was canceled again by the promoters. Undaunted, Hoffman returned to the Mayor and Council on Tuesday to present his pitch for a renewed Jellyfish Festival set for the weekend of Sept. 11-12 on the beach roughly from north of the pier to North Division Street. The plan calls for many of the same elements as the scaled-back version approved last year including free and ticketed performances, beach yoga, cornhole, the fat-tire bike zone, concession sales and the vendor village. However, somewhere between the event request’s placement on Tuesday’s agenda and the actual presentation on Tuesday, a suggestion was made to potentially move the Jellyfish Festival to Labor Day weekend this year. The original Sept. 11-12 proposed dates coincided with the annual fall Wine Fest event at the Inlet. Mayor Rick Meehan said on Tuesday he had a brief conversation with Hoffman earlier that day about possibly moving Jellyfish Festival to Labor Day weekend. “If you look at the dates, it’s going to have the same dates as Wine Fest,” he said. “There isn’t anything scheduled for

Labor Day weekend. Maybe this event could be moved. It would be a nice event for Labor Day weekend.” Hoffman said he could and would move the Jellyfish Festival to Labor Day weekend if that was what the Mayor and Council desired. “I’m excited to push forward with Labor Day weekend,” he said. “It would make a solid anchor for that weekend. We always want to do what’s in the best interest of the town.” Councilman John Gehrig said he could support the date change, but questioned if the decision should have been vetted through the appropriate channels for a special event on a holiday weekend. The mayor’s brief exchange with Hoffman on the day of the presentation and how quickly the council reached a decision on moving the event to Labor Day later in the meeting resulted in a heated exchange about how events are often approved on the fly. “I certainly support the event,” said Gehrig. “I feel like this should have come before the Tourism Commission. This is already a pretty big weekend.” Gehrig briefly suggested the Jellyfish Festival could be better suited on the pop-up car rally weekend in late September, although that idea got little traction.

Page 21

Gehrig later said he wasn’t suggesting the event be moved, but was merely tossing out suggestions. For his part, Hoffman said he was fine with moving the event to Labor Day weekend, but the long-term goal was bringing it back to June. “With COVID still being an element, we looked at Labor Day weekend,” he said. “It could be a one-year proposition. My desire has always been to have this event in June. Ultimately, the plan is to get back to June. It’s a good fit for that part of the season.” Hoffman said having the Jellyfish Festival on Labor Day weekend would provide a tangible special event on which the town could market the holiday weekend. “It would provide a real marketing opportunity for the town for Labor Day,” he said. “Right now, there is no event that weekend. I think it would be a great addition for Labor Day at least for this year.” The council ultimately voted unanimously to approve the Labor Day dates for the Jellyfish Festival, although the debate was far from settled. During the council comments period of the meeting, Gehrig called into question the quick decision by which the date change was made and questioned the process for what was essentially rubberstamped. That led to a brief, but terse, interaction with Councilman Mark Paddack.


County Library Exploring Further Reopening Plans

Page 22

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

February 19, 2021

BY BETHANY HOOPER

STAFF WRITER

BERLIN – Library officials said branches will continue to operate under an appointment model as staff explore the next phase of the library’s reopening plan. Last week, Library Director Jennifer Ranck provided the Worcester County Library Board of Trustees with an update on branch operations. While the library will continue to offer curbside pickup, browsing appointments and to-go programs, she said the next step would be to explore the possibility of reopening its branches at a limited capacity. “The numbers in Worcester County look like they are headed in the right direction,” Ranck told board members. “We are still appointment-based, but I think the next step would be for us to open at a certain capacity … This is something we want to think about a little bit because it will affect operations.” In May, library officials began outlining plans for reopening the library branches as the state moved through its recovery phases. Since that time, the library has introduced a Library To-Go program for curbside pickup, a Library by Appointment program for computer and copier use, and a Grab and Go program for making appointments to browse the collection. Patrons can also checkout mobile hot-

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The Dispatch’s solar array began producing energy five years ago last month. The array was a partnership with Ultra Solar & Wind Solutions, LLC and authorized dealer SunPower. The solar array on The Dispatch’s office roof features 58 panels over 1,018 square feet. The array cost $63,000 with 30% of net cost received back in the form of a federal green tax credit. Another incentive for the company is the earning of monthly Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SREC). One SREC (valued at approximately $40 per) is earned per 1,000 kWhs produced by the solar system with the company compensated quarterly for these productions. On average, between 2016 and 2020, the array has produced more than 23,000 kWh. From December of 2015 through January 2021, the cumulative kWh produced exceeds 117,600 kWh. Lifetime environmental savings include 91.6 tons of CO2 emissions avoided; or 193 gallons of crude oil not used; or 90,865 pounds of coal not burned; or 1,386 mature trees grown, 63,866 pounds of garbage recycled; or 203,279 miles not driven. The Town of Berlin provides electric to the office. The panels produce far more energy than the company uses at its headquarters. Each month there is zero billed kWh use. For example, as of Feb. 1, the company has a prior month excess generation surplus of 3,545 kWh with 348 kWh in bill usage for the month of January. Therefore, if the solar panels did not create anything else moving forward, the company would have enough of an excess generation supply to last at least 10 months. The company’s electric bill for the month of January was $5.75 ($5.50 for customer charge and 25 cents for USP surcharge). File Photo

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to do some outreach.” While the library will continue to explore the next phase of its reopening plan, Ranck said branches will continue to offer programs and schedule appointments. “For the most part, people are coming in and know the section they want to visit,” she told the board. Ranck added that the library’s curbside service has been so popular that the library may extend the program beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. “We continue to do curbside pickup,” she said. “That can be anywhere from 20 pickups a day to places like Ocean Pines where they can have up to 50, 60, or even 70 a day.”


County Approves Boat Ramp Use For Charter Business

February 19, 2021

BY CHARLENE SHARPE

STAFF WRITER

SNOW HILL – County officials approved a local boat captain’s request to use the South Point boat ramp for his bowfishing charter business. The Worcester County Commissioners on Tuesday voted 6-1 to allow Marc Spagnola to use the South Point boat ramp to take fishing customers out. “I think this gentleman’s use of it is low impact,” Commissioner Joe Mitrecic said. Attorney Mark Cropper told the commissioners that while Spagnola had initially asked the commissioners to use the ramp in 2019 and had been denied, he believed there were some misunderstandings regarding the proposal. Cropper said that all Spagnola wanted to do was use the South Point ramp to put his boat in the water so he could take clients fishing. “He can do that today, every single day, 10 times a day, as long as nobody gives him a dollar at the end,” Cropper said. Because Spagnola does get paid, he can’t use the recreational ramp to put his 20-foot boat in the water. Cropper said he was asking the commissioners to give Spagnola a special use permit that would allow him to use the ramp. He added that marine contractors were already using it for commercial purposes. “There are multiple marine contractors

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

6-1 Vote Permits Commercial Use

that regularly use the South Point boat ramp as a staging area,” he said. “I’m not here to pick on them. Quite honestly I don’t know how they’d do it otherwise.” He said that if Spagnola used the ramp at the commercial harbor, he’d have to travel more than 12 miles to the area where he fishes. “I have to be away from people to do my activity,” said Spagnola. “I pretty much stay where there’s nobody really at. That is between South Point ramp and down to the Virginia line.” Cropper said a special use permit would let Spagnola put his boat in the water at the South Point ramp. He said if the commissioners were concerned about opening Pandora’s box, they could consider each similar request on its own merits. “What I’d hope you wouldn’t do is deny this request for Mr. Spagnola who’s trying to do this the right way out of fear that maybe somebody after today may come forward with a similar request,” Cropper said. “I say judge each request on its merit.” Commissioner Chip Bertino said opening Pandora’s box was a legitimate concern. “We’re setting precedent,” he said.

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“It’s not just the South Point ramp that would be affected. We have other ramps throughout the county…You’re saying you don’t think we should look at it as what would happen in the future, well I think we ought to and we should.” Commissioner Jim Bunting also voiced objections to the proposal. “I’ve been here for 10 years and we’ve worked hard to keep our boat ramps for public use, for recreational use,” he said. “Not for any type of commercial use.” He added that the county had other issues with its boat ramps, such as the fact that they were overused by out of state residents. He agreed that the issue of marine contractors using the areas and putting wear and tear on infrastructure was a problem as well. “They’re costing the county money,” he said. When asked if Spagnola had used the ramp for his business in the past, Cropper said he had and that was why he was there making the permit request. He said a resident near the ramp would call the county office and the sheriff’s office every time he saw Spagnola’s boat at the ramp. “He doesn’t want quite honestly to continue that relationship with the county or the sheriff’s office,” Cropper said. “He

Page 23

wants to do it the right way which is why I’m here.” He suggested the commissioners let Spagnola have a permit for one year to see how it went. Mitrecic voiced support for the request. “The only thing I’ll say is this happens at each of our boat ramps every day,” he said. “We just have a watchdog that has an issue with Mr. Spagnola down at the South Point boat ramp. You can go to commercial harbor, you can go to any of them and you’re going to have these types of operations go on. This gentleman just happens to be one that wants to ask for permission due to the fact he has a watchdog that keeps an eye on him there.” Bertino said he thought a one-year permit did protect the county in the event there was a problem but objected to Mitrecic’s comments. “You’re talking about this particular neighbor as if they’re doing something wrong,” he said. “They’re not. We have laws on the books and I don’t think it’s wrong for somebody to point out when those laws are not followed… We have enough problems with people not following the laws of this county.” The commissioners voted 6-1, with Bunting opposed, to grant Spagnola a permit for one year and to have staff work on creating some guidelines that could be put in place for future permit requests.


Open-Air WOC Restaurant Concept Denied License Upgrade

Page 24

BY CHARLENE SHARPE

STAFF WRITER

SNOW HILL – The future of a West Ocean City restaurant remains in question this week after a change to its liquor license was denied. The Worcester County Board of License Commissioners (BLC) on Wednesday denied a license upgrade request from Mad Fish. Though the restaurant’s connections asked for a change in its license to allow for a new open-air concept — to be created with shipping containers — to replace the facility that burned down in 2019, board members cited the potential for noise. “Your operation may, by its nature, unduly affect the peace and the tranquility of the neighborhood,” said William Esham, BLC chairman. Mad Fish, which was located at the former site of the Captain’s Galley and OC Fish Company, was destroyed in a fire in August of 2019. After getting plans for a new building for the waterfront site approved last year, owner Cole Taustin said COVID-19 forced him to adjust those plans. With capacity limitations on restaurants and the public wary of gathering indoors, Taustin came up with the concept of an open-air facility made up of seven shipping containers. “This is cutting edge,” said Michael Gershenfeld, chief operating officer of the Taustin Group. “This is an outstanding reaction to the current environment.” Because the Class B restaurant license Mad Fish held requires 51% food sales and 70 seats at tables, which the layout of the shipping containers wouldn’t permit, Taustin submitted an application

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

for a Class D bar/tavern license with approval for eight-piece live entertainment. The Class D license only requires 50 seats enclosed. At the start of Wednesday’s hearing, attorney Hugh Cropper, representing Mad Fish, acknowledged that there’d been opposition from neighbors regarding the entertainment aspect of the proposal. As a result, he said Taustin had amended his request to allow for just three pieces of unamplified entertainment. That, he argued, would be indiscernible along the commercial harbor as boats passed by and neighboring establishments hosted live bands. “You’re not even going to hear it…,” Cropper said. “I think this is a huge reduction not only in what he proposed but what he has now.” Taustin, whose family has been in the local restaurant business for more than 80 years, said that the shipping container concept, which would be known as Pier 23, was going to be an operation focused on food. He even offered to continue adhering to the 51% food requirement associated with the Class B license. “Pier 23 is first and foremost a restaurant,” he said. “It’s not intended to be a nightclub. It’s not intended to be a tavern.” He said he’d only initially asked for eight-piece entertainment to allow for future diversification. “The old saying, ‘nothing good happens after midnight’ — I believe in it,” he said. Taustin stressed that he’d created the shipping container concept because he felt it addressed lingering COVID-19 concerns and was something he’d be able to

February 19, 2021

afford. “As many may not realize, the restaurant business operates on some pretty tight margins,” he said. “So you’ve got to be able to play things pretty close to the vest, especially the first two years of operating. Because I was operating in 2018 at a net loss and I hadn’t finished 2019, I was not able to show profitable dollars to the insurance company so my business interruption claim was tossed out the window. I was not able to recoup any of that money, I was only able to recoup a portion of the building insurance.” Architect Keith Iott, who has done work for Seacrets, said the containers had been grouped around the proposed stage area to help control sound. Nevertheless, the president of the Marsh Harbour homeowners association said property owners — many of whom submitted letters in opposition to the license upgrade — were worried about the potential for noise. He said the distance from the proposed stage to his residence was 670 feet and that the entrance to the community was even closer. He added that residents in Marsh Harbour could already hear music from Harborside and sometimes Sunset Grille. Though Mad Fish had entertainment when it was open before, the homeowners association president said the openair concept was uncharted water. “This appears to me to be a totally different animal,” he said. Taustin pointed out he’d been involved with BLU Crabhouse for the past 10 years and that there had been no noise complaints there in spite of the fact it was very close to neighboring residences. “I do have the best interests of this

area in mind,” he said. Esham asked how he could control noise without any building enveloping the space. “I’m creating a relaxing dining environment,” Taustin said, adding that “eat drink chill” would be the Pier 23 motto. “It’s not eat drink party. It’s not eat drink rage.” Taustin added that he’d been remiss in not addressing neighbors’ concerns prior to Wednesday’s hearing. Esham said that as required, the hearing had been publicly advertised. He said he’d also asked staff to notify the surrounding neighborhood “because of the nature of” the original request. Attorney Demetrios Kaouris, representing some neighbors opposed to the license request, said the operation would disrupt the neighborhood, potentially creating noise and impacting traffic. Cropper maintained that when the site had been home to Captain’s Galley it had featured live entertainment and even more patrons than Pier 23 would. “It’s a commercial fishing harbor,” he said. “It’s not tranquil. I think it can coexist with the neighborhood.” Taustin offered to amend the license request to not include anything other than background music that would be cut off at 9 p.m. He said he could come back if he wanted to expand on that after he’d talked to neighbors and assuaged their concerns. BLC member Charles Nichols made a motion to deny the request based on its potential to disturb the neighborhood. BLC member Reese Cropper and Esham agreed. “It is an open-air business that’s going to have food and entertainment,” Esham said. “All previous businesses were in fact structures — restaurants — they were in an enclosed area.” He said Taustin had offered nothing in the way of soundproofing. “We are here to protect the peace and tranquility of the neighborhood,” he said, adding that there were hundreds of residences in the area. “That’s our job.” Taustin said that because of the seating requirements associated with the Class B license, he would not be able to begin construction of Pier 23. “I’m actually out of business now,” he said.

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Offshore Wind Turbine Location Concerns Resurface

February 19, 2021

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – The long-dormant debate about the development of offshore wind energy farms off the coast and their distance from shore bubbled to the surface at this week’s Mayor and Council meeting. In 2017, the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) approved two offshore wind energy projects off the coast of Ocean City. Technically, the PSC awarded Offshore Renewable Energy Credits, or ORECs, to the two successful bidders seeking to develop wind energy farms off the coast of the resort including the US Wind project and the Skipjack project. From the beginning, Ocean City has not opposed, but rather supported, the development of clean renewable energy off the coast. The town’s concern from the beginning has been the proposed distance of the wind turbines from the coast and the potential impact on the offshore viewsheds. The issue has been debated at nearly every level and every step in the regulatory process. After a relatively quiet period on the offshore wind farm front for several months, the issue arose again at the close of Tuesday’s council meeting when Councilman Frank Knight asked for an update on Mayor Rick Meehan’s recent letter to Gov. Larry Hogan and copied to the town’s state and federal elected officials raising concerns about new developments in the potential locations of additional wind turbines in the US Wind project. The Clean Energy Jobs Act of 2019 created the possibility for additional OREC subsidies, essentially tripling the ORECs already awarded to the US Wind and Skipjack projects in 2013. Although the ORECs awarded in 2013 were limited to projects between 10 and 30 miles off the coast of Ocean City, US Wind repeatedly promised the first line of wind turbines would be no closer to the coast than 17 miles. Ocean City repeatedly asked US Wind to install turbines no closer than 26 miles, or a distance from which they would not be visible from the resort’s coast. Now, after a discussion at the close of Tuesday’s meeting, and a letter sent to Hogan and elected representatives, it appears US Wind is considering utilizing a portion of the existing footprint even closer than the 17 miles originally projected. The 2019 legislation allows for ORECs to be awarded as far as 80 miles off the coast, but that would require establishing additional lease areas. The federal Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has the authority to establish new lease areas even further off the coast. During Tuesday’s meeting, Meehan said town officials had conversations with US Wind about exploring the additional lease area with BOEM, but the company appears set on utilizing the existing lease area’s footprint, which could lead to taller turbines even closer to shore than originally anticipated. Knight on Tuesday asked for an update on the letter to Ho-

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

gan and the town’s representatives and Meehan explained the origin of the letter. “The letter is the result of a conversation we finally had with US Wind,” he said. “During the conversation, we point-blank asked them about their intention to build turbines closer than 17 miles off the coast, which is the distance they have always stated would be the closest offshore, and the answer was yes. In fact, if they were the winners of the additional ORECs, the lease area would be about 12 miles off our coast. They would be building turbines in those areas.” Meehan said the alleged response from US Wind prompted his letter to Hogan and Ocean City’s representatives in Annapolis and Washington. “As a result, we’ve sent letters to all of our federal elected officials,” he said. “We’re working with our lawyers to make sure they are very aware of the situation.” Ocean City has contended from the beginning if the offshore wind companies were given an inch, they would ultimately take a mile. “What we’ve contended all along is exactly what’s going to happen if, in fact, they are allowed to proceed,” he said. “We are on top of that and we’re going to take every measure we can.” City Manager Doug Miller pointed out the potential wind turbine area closer to shore could impact an ecologically, economically and medically important horse-

shoe crab sanctuary. Local fishermen harvest horseshoe crabs because their blood has unique properties used in the creation of injectable medicines for humans, including COVID vaccines. “We also have a potentially dangerous situation because where the turbines could go is in a horseshoe crab sanctuary, especially now with COVID and the need for blood those crabs provide,” he said. Meehan said the letter requests BOEM to consider approving an additional lease area for offshore wind further from the resort’s coast. “The goal is to try to get BOEM to establish an additional lease area further to the east to accommodate the additional ORECs,” he said. “Once that area is established, hopefully, they’ll be able to move what is being proposed further from shore. It’s as much as a full-court press as we can put on.” In the letter, Meehan said he wrote to the secretaries of the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the Maryland Energy Administration in 2018 requesting a process for creating a new Maryland Offshore Renewable Energy lease area further off the coast of Ocean City be initiated as soon as possible. “I made this request with the unanimous approval of the Ocean City Council in an effort to create an alternative location for installation of wind turbines that would allow the state to meet our impor-

Page 25

tant clean energy goals without jeopardizing Ocean City’s economy,” the letter reads. “Unfortunately, after two years, no efforts have been made by either agency to begin this process.” In the letter, Meehan wrote the town is already aware of US Wind’s intentions to utilize more of the existing lease area footprint without pursuing a new lease area further from the coast. “The only available option for the additional turbines to support the 2019 ORECs will be locations within the existing Maryland lease area as close as 12 miles from our coast,” the letter reads. “We know that US Wind had already initiated the federal permit process to accomplish exactly that using the GE 12megawatt turbines that stand over 850 feet tall. This cannot be allowed to happen. Turbines that close to our shore will destroy Ocean City tourism and property values.” The letter urges BOEM to act quickly on establishing and approving a new Maryland lease area as far as 30 miles off the coast. In the letter, Meehan said during a BOEM briefing with the Eastern Shore delegation in 2018, the agency said a new lease area could be created, bid and awarded within two years. “We will only get one chance to get this right, and by starting this process now, we have that chance to develop a clean energy project that is a win-win for everyone.”


First-Degree Assault Arrest In OC County Workforce Position Questioned

Page 26

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – A Washington, D.C., man was arrested on first-degree assault charges last weekend after allegedly strangling his wife during a domestic incident at a midtown condominium. Around 11:50 p.m. last Sunday, Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officers responded to a reported 911 call hang-up in the area of 75th Street. The officers tracked the call to a condo building and were in a parking garage under the building when they reportedly heard a scream from upstairs. The officers noticed the lights were on in a unit on the second floor. Meanwhile, the officers determined through Ocean City Communications a vehicle in the parking garage was registered to George Vaughn, 35, of Washington, D.C. Ocean City Communications also confirmed the phone number of the 911 call was associated with Vaughn. Officers continued to try to make contact with the occupants of the unit when they observed a male suspect, later identified as Vaughn, crawling on the floor near the bed. The officers announced themselves as police and ordered Vaughn to answer the door so they could check on his welfare. Vaughn ultimately exited

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

the unit shirtless carrying a white tank top with what appeared to be blood on it, according to police reports. Vaughn was detained at that point. The officers also encountered a female at the front door with a fresh, red injury on her neck consistent with being strangled, according to police reports. The victim also reportedly had a bleeding laceration on her forehead about one inch in length. The victim reportedly told police Vaughn was her husband and they owned the unit. When told Vaughn was being detained for suspected assault, the victim reportedly told police she did not wish to press charges. When Vaughn was interviewed, he reportedly told police he had been sleeping on the couch when the officers arrived. Vaughn reportedly told police the blood stains on the tank top were the result of him working construction. When asked about the incident, Vaughn reportedly told the officers, “You guys might as well take me away.” When interviewed, the victim reportedly told police she and Vaughn had been drinking all day. She reportedly told police Vaughn had strangled her for a brief time but that she never lost consciousness. The victim reportedly told the officers after the assault, she locked herself in the bathroom until police arrived.

BY CHARLENE SHARPE

STAFF WRITER

SNOW HILL – New information has two of the Worcester County Commissioners questioning a recent decision to hire a workforce engagement specialist. Commissioner Chip Bertino expressed concern this week over information provided by the consultant who handled the county’s STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) program. The information, provided after the commissioners voted to use funding previously devoted to STEM to hire a new employee, contradicts statistics reported by county staff Feb. 2. “We deserve to have proper information given to us so that we can make decisions,” Bertino said Tuesday. At the Feb. 2 meeting of the commissioners, they voted to create a new workforce engagement position based on the recommendation of Tom Perlozzo, the county’s director of recreation, parks, tourism and economic development. Perlozzo said the county had spent more than $500,000 on STEM programs during the last 10 years and had little to show for it. He said that while the program had placed interns there had been no STEM positions in Worcester County resulting from the program. Fawn Mete, who served as the contractual program manager for that program, emailed the commissioners Feb. 8 disputing those claims. She said the compensation figures Perlozzo gave were inaccurate and that there had been reporting of program success. “All metrics that were included in my approved contract and program proposal were reported on annually,” she said. “I held a public STEM Recognition Ceremony each summer, where exhaustive qualitative data was presented by program participants and employer partners themselves. Quantitative data on participation was distributed at each event. Most commissioners personally attended these events at least once.” She also took exception to Perlozzo’s statement that no full-time STEM jobs had resulted from the program. She included 2019 correspondence with the commissioners that referenced 11 program participants who had accepted full-time local jobs in STEM. She went on to name others who now worked in the local area in STEM fields. She also detailed her previous recommendations regarding the program as well as other details that she said weren’t addressed accurately by Perlozzo. “It is evident that the current department leadership wishes to move away from the services I provided, and the STEM program as it operated pre-COVID, as part of departmental reorganization,” she ended her email. “While I respect that decision, I would have appreciated the professional courtesy of open communication during the last several months. I hope a driv-

February 19, 2021

en and qualified applicant for the newly approved workforce development position is found quickly for 2021 programs to get off the ground, as our youth have already lost so much during the pandemic. I wish Worcester County great success in this endeavor.” In bringing up the email Tuesday, Bertino said he had no way of knowing if what Mete wrote was correct or not because staff hadn’t addressed the information or produced a response to the email. “The only thing I know is that in my questions to people that met with Fawn she was questioned over the last two years on several occasions to provide that data and she did not,” said Harold Higgins, the county’s chief administrative officer. Bertino said the information in the email should be investigated. “The taxpayers of this county believe that the seven of us who are elected to represent them in county government are being told correct information,” he said. “I hope that’s the case when somebody looks into this and I hope somebody does by the next meeting. It’s very frustrating, and this is not the first time that staff has fallen down on providing the commissioners with information.” Commissioner Jim Bunting agreed and said he might have voted differently at the last meeting if he’d been aware of the information in the email. “I know this is twice this has happened recently,” he said. When asked if county staff wanted to comment on the information in the email, Public Information Officer Kim Moses said they were addressing specific issues in the email. “While Worcester County Government values the benefits of the STEM programs, we also recognize that county taxpayers will be better served by transitioning from a highly-competitive, two-week STEM camp and internship program, which is currently run by an independent contractor, to a broader three-fold program overseen in-house within Worcester County Economic Development (WCED) that is specifically designed to serve the business community and youth and adults from diverse backgrounds and skill sets on a full-time basis, 365 days per year.” She said WCED would continue to offer the STEM internship program as well as the STAT (skilled trades, agriculture and tourism) program that will be overseen by the new coordinator. “Essentially, in addition to continuing to connect youth with STEM internship opportunities, WCED will begin working closely with local, regional, and state partners as well as the business community to connect youth, under/unemployed adults and dislocated workers with career training to prepare them for full-time, family-sustaining careers with local and state government agencies and businesses operating in Worcester County,” she said.


February 19, 2021

Downtown Bar Brawl OCEAN CITY – An Ocean Pines man was arrested on second-degree assault charges last week after allegedly causing a ruckus at a downtown bar. Shortly before 8 p.m. last Monday, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer responded to a bar on Somerset Street for a reported disorderly male and possibly an assault. Upon arrival, the officer met with a witness on the sidewalk outside the bar who was waving his arms to gain the officer’s attention, according to police reports. The witness reportedly told the officer “You’re going to have to call for backup,” before advising there was a large, intoxicated male inside the bar that was acting erratically and putting his hands on people. The witness told police the suspect was “going crazy in there” and advised the officer multiple times he was going to need to call for backup, according to police reports. On the witness’s advice, the officer looked through the bar window and observed a male suspect, later identified as Eric Swanson, 51, of Ocean Pines, holding onto a male victim, who was struggling to break free, according to police reports. The officer reportedly entered the bar and drew his Taser. When the officer entered, Swanson was still holding on to the victim, who continued to struggle. Another male victim was in the same area standing near the two men who were grappling, according to police reports. The officer placed his Taser in an armed position, aimed it at Swanson and ordered him to stop. Swanson did stop eventually and held his arms out to the side and complied with the officer’s orders to lay on the ground. Swanson was then detained without further incident. The victim thanked the officer profusely and told him he was just trying to buy time until the police arrived. The victim said the witness out on the sidewalk was his roommate. The witness reportedly told the victim something was going to happen in the bar, which is when the victim went back inside to assist a bar staffer who was attempting to control Swanson, according to police reports. The bar staffer told police Swanson was a regular customer who was often touchy-feely, but had an alpha personality and often took physical contact too far, according to police reports. The bar staffer said the altercation began when

Cops & Courts The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

Swanson allegedly grabbed his mask and ripped it off his face, according to police reports. Based on the evidence and testimony, Swanson was arrested on two counts of second-degree assault and disorderly conduct. He was also issued a permanent trespass warning for the bar.

Uptown Domestic Assault OCEAN CITY – A local man was arrested last weekend for second-degree assault after allegedly striking his girlfriend during a domestic incident at an uptown condo. Around 7:30 p.m. last Sunday, Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officers responded to a residence on Jamaica Avenue for a reported domestic dispute. Upon arrival, the officer encountered a group of people outside who advised they had observed a male suspect, later identified as Robert Game, 58, of Ocean City, push a female victim in front of a condo unit, according to police reports. The female victim reportedly approached the officer and advised she was in a relationship with Game and that they had been arguing all day. The victim told police Game was constantly jealous and accused her of cheating before becoming violent just prior to the officer’s arrival, according to police reports. The victim reportedly told police Game had slapped her on the side of her face with an open palm before pushing her down on a bed and getting on top of her. The officer reportedly observed the left side of the victim’s face with swollen and bruising with two diagonal red cuts on her cheek. According to police reports, when the victim finally looked in a mirror, she was taken aback by the severity of the injuries to the side

of her face. Based on the evidence and testimony, Game was arrested and charged with second-degree assault.

Another Guilty Plea In Boardwalk Assault SNOW HILL – One of four suspects charged with armed robbery and firstdegree assault for their roles in a gunpoint robbery involving a shotgun on the Boardwalk in August pleaded guilty this week to one count of second-degree assault and a pre-sentence investigation was ordered. Joshua Benitez, now 18, of Lorton, Va., pleaded guilty last week to one count of second-degree assault for his role in the August 26 incident on the Boardwalk. Last month, James Watson, 17, of Alexandria, Va., pleaded guilty to three counts of second-degree assault for his role in the August 26 incident. He was sentenced to 12 years, including 10 for one count and one year each for the other two counts. All but five years of which were suspended. Another suspect charged in the incident had the charges against him dropped in November. The fourth suspect in the case has yet to appear for trial. Around 2:15 a.m. on Aug. 26, 2020, an Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) officer on bicycle patrol was dispatched to the area of 12th Street and the Boardwalk for a reported assault with gun. As the bicycle officer made his way to the scene, the officer observed a suspect matching the description provided by Ocean City Communications running west toward Baltimore Avenue. The officer detained the suspect, later identified as Watson. OCPD officers viewed the City Watch video footage of the incident and obser-

Page 27 ved Watson walking down the Boardwalk carrying a shotgun. The officer who first detained Watson reported never seeing Watson in possession of the shotgun, but witnesses told police Watson handed the weapon to a friend, who went back to their vehicle. OCPD officers interviewed the female victim, who reportedly told police Watson had robbed her and her 10-yearold niece. The victim told police Watson held her 10-year-old niece at gunpoint and demanded her cell phone, according to police reports. The victim told police she grabbed the cell phone from her niece and told the child to run away, according to police reports. The victim reportedly told officers she attempted to call the police, but Watson’s friend, later identified as Benitez, grabbed the phone from her and physically assaulted her. The victim told police Watson handed the shotgun to another friend, later identified as Alexis Cabrera, 17, of Lorton, Va. The witness told police Watson then attempted to rob her of her wallet, but she was able to get away. According to City Watch footage, Watson enters the screen frame carrying the black shotgun by his side and physically assaulted a male victim by striking him in the face, according to police reports. Watson then allegedly handed the shotgun to Cabrera and continued to argue with the victim. The footage also revealed Benitez assaulting the female victim and taking the cell phone. According to police reports, another male victim, possibly the female victim’s boyfriend, attempted to run after Benitez. Watson chased the male victim and struck and kicked him all in the same motion. One witness reportedly told police they heard the pumping and wracking the shotgun. After Watson handed the shotgun to Cabrera, he ran from the Boardwalk, which is when he was first encountered by the bicycle officer responding to the scene. According to witnesses, Cabrera, Benitez and a third suspect, later identified as Micah Younger, 18, of Manassas, Va., left the area with the shotgun in a silver Honda. A short time later, Maryland State Police located the suspect vehicle in West Ocean City and initiated a traffic stop. Inside the vehicle were Cabrera, Younger and Benitez. The MSP trooper also observed the shotgun in plain view in the vehicle.


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The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

Students In The News

February 19, 2021

The annual Junior Ring Ceremony took place on Feb. 10 in the Worcester Prep Athletic and Performing Arts Center. It is tradition that seniors present juniors with their rings along with a few meaningful comments as to why the recipient is special to them. The Ring Ceremony is always an inspiring event showing the bond and friendship between peers. Above, members from the Class of 2022 who participated in the Junior Ring Ceremony were, front from left, Josie Miller Gonzalez, Aria Islam, Brooke Phillips, Sydney Lamson-Reich, Sophie Haines, Faith Sens, Jenna Beaver, Sumira Sehgal, Anna Williams, Myranda Beebe, AnnaMarie Buas, Anna McDonald, Grace Baeurle, Lily Baeurle, Morgan White, Brooke Emeigh, Camden Rayne, Megan Waller and Kate Abbott, and, back, Head of Upper School/Assistant Head of School Mike Grosso, Jack Tucker, Alex Bunting, Bennett Tinkler, Jordan Willey, Jarett Sofronski, Austin Cannon, Graham McCabe, Hugh Thomas Cropper, Anders Taylor, Brice Richins, Aidan Hammond Upper School teacher/class sponsor Madelyn Beebe. Not pictured was Vaughn Zender. Below left, WPS juniors Aria Islam, Hugh Thomas Cropper, Brooke Phillips and Sydney Lamson-Reich proudly display their new Class of 2022 rings. Bottom left, senior Brugh Moore shares a few meaningful words about classmate Brice Richins before presenting his ring. Bottom, senior Grace Hopkins presents junior Sumira Sehgal with her new class ring. Submitted Photos


Announcements

February 19, 2021

BERLIN – The following represents a collection of media releases announcing local student achievements in college. •Samuel Tinkler qualified for the Fall 2020 Dean's List at Belmont University. Eligibility is based on a minimum course load of 12 hours and a quality grade point average of 3.5 with no grade below a C. Approximately 55 percent of Belmont's students this semester qualified for the Fall 2020 Dean's List. •Kai McGovern, Class of 2023, has been named to the dean's list for the fall 2020 semester at the University of Vermont. McGovern of Berlin is in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources. To be named to the dean's list, students must have a grade-point average of 3.0 or better and rank in the top 20 percent of their class in their respective college or school. •McDaniel College announces its Fall 2020 Dean's List, recognizing fulltime undergraduate students for outstanding academic achievement, including Ocean City residents James Church, who has been recognized with Honors, and Hannah Burke, who has been recognized with Highest Honors. •Edward McDermott of Ocean City has been named to the Dean's List at Hamilton College for the 2020 fall semester. To be named to the Dean's List, a student must have carried throughout the semester a course load of four or more graded credits with an average of 3.5 or above. •Students in the region named to the University of Delaware Dean's List for the Fall 2020 semester include Edgar Perez of Selbyville, Alex Carey, Ethan Call, Matthew Lyons, Sydney Messick, John Keller, Sara Binkley, Joseph Linthicum, Andrea Elsby, Kennedy Butch, Lindsay Mann, Allison Walsh, Chloe Pilkerton, Michael Payan, Lauren Smith, Bridget Langan, Hunter King, George Ward, Jonathan Hess, Yan Wu, Emily Tharby, Jessica Bunting, Taylor Woodington, Nikola Melnsvarka, Kelhan Bailey, Bethany Pasmore, Alexis Webb, Scarlett Wyrick, Ana Calles Zamora, Maria Ziethen, Madison Johnson, Kirsten Taylor, Olivia Burdick, Cody Edwards, Thomas Harris, Sydney Dovi, Yan Wu, Logan Snapp, Estefania Samper-Cruz, Cole Dubois and Caleb Mindte. To meet eligibility requirements for the Dean's List, a student must be enrolled fulltime and earn a GPA of 3.5 or above (on a 4.0 scale) for the semester. •Three students from the area have been named to the dean's list at Frostburg State University in recognition of outstanding academic achievement for the spring 2020 semester. To be eligible, a student must undertake a minimum of 12 credit hours and earn a cumulative semester grade point average of at least 3.4 on a 4.0 scale. The students were Abbie Baker, Hunter Morris and Anna Putsch, who had the distinction of a 4.0 grade point av-

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

Page 29

National School Counseling Week was celebrated Feb. 1-5. The annual event recognizes the unique contribution of school counselors within U.S. school systems. Students in Shelby Matassa's kindergarten class at Ocean City Elementary School made special pictures for school counselor Linda McGean, an integral part of OCES, but especially to kindergartners who receive weekly lessons centered around social and emotional learning. Pictured in the collage are students Owen Nodine, Audrey Usilton, Julia Gjidede, RJ Parsons, Alyssa Coleman, Penelope Buta, Zia Salem, Garret Ketner, Michael Brown, Anthony Thornton, Carter Justice and Charlie Poulin. Submitted Photo

erage. •Lauren Grow, a sophomore Intelligence Analysis major at York College of Pennsylvania, has been named to the Dean's List for the fall 2020 semester. To be eligible for this honor, a student must be registered for at least 12 academic credit hours and earn a semester GPA of 3.50 or higher. •Aurora University has named Phillip Gianelle to the Dean's List for the fall 2020 semester. Gianelle is majoring in Accounting, BS, Finance, BS. The Dean's List recognizes full-time undergraduate students who have earned a 3.6 GPA or higher. Gianelle was recognized with high honors this semester, having earned a perfect 4.0. •Two area students have earned the distinction of Dean's List at the Georgia Institute of Technology for Fall 2020. This designation is awarded to undergraduate students who have earned a 3.0 or higher academic average for the semester. The students were Trevor Beachboard of Bethany Beach and Laila Mirza of Ocean Pines. •Northeastern University is pleased to recognize students who distinguish themselves academically during the course of the school year. Berlin resident Maximilian Huber, a Northeastern University student majoring in computer science, was recently named to the University's Dean's List for the fall semester. Additionally, Bishopville resident Parker Brandt, a Northeastern

University student majoring in economics/business admin, was named to the Dean’s List. •Erin Trask of Berlin was named to the College of the Holy Cross Fall 2020 Dean's List. A member of the Class of 2024, Trask is an undeclared major. Trask was among more than 1,453 students named to the Dean's List for outstanding academic achievement during the fall semester of the 2020-21 academic year. •A total of 13,128 students enrolled during the fall 2020 term at The University of Alabama made the Dean's List with academic records of 3.5 or above (on a 4.0 scale), or the President's List with academic records of 4.0 (all A's). Tara Fischer of Berlin and Justin Bennett of Ocean Pines were named to the Dean’s List. Abigail Yesko, forensic science major from Berlin, has been named to the President's List for achieving a perfect 4.0 grade point average in the Fall Semester 2020. To be eligible for the President's List, honorees must be full-time undergraduate students with a 4.0 GPA for least 12 semester hours of classes. •Berlin resident Corinne Krasner has been named to the Dean's List at James Madison University for the fall 2020 semester. Students who earn Dean's List honors must carry at least 12 graded credit hours and earn a GPA of between 3.5 and 3.899. Krasner is a musical theatre major.

•Maddison Olley of Selbyville earned Dean's List honors at The University of Tampa for the Fall 2020 semester. Olley is a junior majoring in Biology. Students must maintain a GPA of 3.75 or higher to be eligible for the dean's list. •Rachel Beers, of Selbyville, Del., a student at Fairleigh Dickinson University's Florham Campus, located in Madison, N.J., has been named to the Dean's List for the Fall 2020 semester. To qualify for the Dean's List, a student must carry a 3.2 or better grade point average out of a possible 4.0 and be enrolled in a minimum of 12 letter-graded hours (four courses). •Shea Griffin, of Berlin, a student at Fairleigh Dickinson University's Florham Campus in Madison, N.J., has been named to the Honors List for the spring and fall 2020 semesters. To qualify for the Honors List, a student must carry a 3.5 or better grade point average out of a possible 4.0 and be enrolled in a minimum of 12 letter-graded hours (four courses). •Widener University has announced students who achieved Dean's List recognition for fall 2020. The Dean's List recognizes full-time students who earned a grade point average of 3.50 and above for the semester. The local students recognized included Ryan Sauer of Ocean City, majoring in Mechanical Engineering, and Katrina Harrell of Ocean City, majoring in Nursing.


Community

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The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

February 19, 2021

News In Photos

Fins Hospitality Group, parent company of Claws Seafood, Fins Ale & Fish House, and Big Oyster Brewery, made a $1,000 donation to Meals on Wheels Delaware. "In this tough business climate, we still need to realize that there are people in this community that need our support. We are happy to partner with Meals on Wheels to provide help to those people in need." said Jeff Hamer, owner of Fins Hospitality Group. Meals on Wheels has been an important charity to both Kim and Jeff Hamer, since they purchased the home of the couple that started Meals on Wheels in Rehoboth. Pictured, from left, are Andrew Harton, brewer of Big Oyster; Jeff Hamer; John Wolfe of Meals on Wheels; and Kim Hamer. A $10,000 gift will benefit the Salisbury’s Promise Scholarship Fund, which provides scholarships to Salisbury University students enrolled in the Nonprofit Leadership Certification Program. The gift was made by Dr. George and Barbara Whitehead in honor of the recent designation as an AmeriCorps School of National Service. Dr. George Whitehead founded and led the ShoreCorps/PALS at Salisbury University until his retirement in 2016. The couple created the Salisbury’s Promise Scholarship, held at the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore, to help ensure exemplary students had access to the program. Pictured, from left, are the Whiteheads and Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore President Erica Joseph. Submitted Photos

On behalf of the participants, volunteers and generous sponsors, Focus Multisports presented the Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company (BBVFC) a $2,000 check to be used towards the possible purchase of additional COVID decontamination equipment. Additional donations were made to supporting local high school sports organizations such as Indian River High School Tribe Lacrosse Team and Indian River High School Cross Country Team. Pictured, from left, are Rick Hundley, Focus Multisports; Tyler Hickman, BBVFC Deputy Chief; and Ernie Felici, Focus Multisports Ray Hoy, left, president of Wor-Wic Community College, recently received a $1,500 check from Bill Chambers, president and CEO of the Salisbury Area Chamber of Commerce. The chamber provides scholarship funds to Wor-Wic each year for Worcester, Wicomico or Somerset County students based on financial need and scholastic achievement.

Members of Salisbury University’s Alpha Alpha Delta chapter of the Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity recently participated in the “Clean Up Salisbury” campaign, picking up litter along South Boulevard. The citywide initiative is coordinated by community member Craig Faunce and the Faunce Foundation.

Lower Eastern Shore, Maryland, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America volunteers raised funds to brighten the holidays of critical care providers who deserve recognition for providing home health care services to residents of Worcester, Wicomico, and Somerset counties during the COVID-19 crisis. Gift cards were purchased for 40 home health workers who consistently have provided crucial services during the pandemic. Pictured are Alexis, Charlie and Ivy Southward, Judy Davis, Nanci Osborne and Nicole Hollywood donating to Don Boger of Home Instead Senior Care.


Annual AGH Report Spotlights Pandemic Services

February 19, 2021

BY CHARLENE SHARPE

STAFF WRITER

SNOW HILL – Firsthand accounts of the many impacts of COVID-19 highlighted Atlantic General Hospital’s annual presentation to county officials this week. On Tuesday, Atlantic General Hospital (AGH) representatives met with the Worcester County Commissioners to share the hospital’s usual annual report. While prior reports consisted of statistics and strategic planning, this year’s primarily focused on the ongoing pandemic. “As you can imagine it’s been very taxing for all the staff,” said Dr. Sally Dowling, vice president of medical affairs for AGH. “Without your support this year, it would have been even more challenging.” Dowling talked about the physical changes the hospital had made to ensure it could care for the community, including the addition of ICU space to create a COVID-19 ward and a partnership with the Berlin Nursing Home to make an overflow area. “We have not yet had to use that,” Dowling said.

Obituaries Ronald Edgar Smack

BERLIN – Ronald Edgar Smack, age 79, died on Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021 at his home. Born in Salisbury, he was the son of the late Calvin E. Smack, Sr. and Margaret Baker Smack. He is survived by his wife, Charlotte Murray Smack, and children, Dr. David Smack and his wife Eileen, Christopher Smack and his wife Melissa, Elizabeth Davis and her husband Tommy, and Michele Shaffer and her RONALD husband Bryan. There EDGAR SMACK are six grandchildren, Abigail, Caleb and Cordrey Smack, Hannah and Thomas Davis and Nathan Shaffer. Also surviving is his brother Tom and his wife Angie, and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his brother, Calvin Smack, Jr. A 1960 graduate of Stephen Decatur High School, he earned his associate’s degree, and taught briefly at the Vo-Tech School in Snow Hill. Later he worked as a waterman, and contracted electrical and plumbing work. In his spare time, he enjoyed metal detecting and hunting for arrowheads, also crabbing, fishing and golfing. When he wasn’t outside, he dabbled in painting, carving, and photography. A graveside service will be held on Saturday, Feb. 20 at 2 p.m. at Evergreen Cemetery near Berlin. Pastor John Oltman will officiate. Masks and social distancing will be mandatory. A donation in his memory may be made to the Worcester County Humane Society, P.O. Box 48, Berlin, Md. 21811, or Coastal Hospice, P.O. Box 1733, Salisbury, Md. 21804. Letters of condolence may be sent via: www.burbagefuneralhome.com

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

She said to date the hospital had treated 373 COVID-19 patients. Now that the vaccine is available, AGH is working to provide it to hospital staff as well as community members. Dowling said 80% of AGH’s direct patient care staff had received both doses of the vaccine. As far as all associates, between 65% and 70% of them have received both doses. “We had the first community vaccination clinic in the state where we vaccinated 726 patients,” Dowling said. “Those patients just received their second dose this past Saturday very successfully. As of this week we have administered over 4,000 doses of the vaccine …” Nurse Nettie Widgeon told the commissioners the past year had been hard on hospital staff. “It’s been stressful emotionally for our staff but we’ve had some really great points also,” she said. “The great points

come from our hospital adjusting so quickly to the demand of what was happening.” She talked about the countless adjustments made to the hospital to be able to treat COVID patients better. She also addressed the impact the pandemic had on regular hospital patients. She recalled treating a woman with a broken arm who she thought was trembling with pain. The woman was in fact terrified of getting COVID while she was treated. “She was scared of me,” Widgeon said. “She was scared to be in my ER and it’s such a strange feeling for me to have a patient being scared to be with us because normally we’re the safe place.” AGH President and CEO Michael Franklin said that while staff continued to fight COVID, the hospital was still planning long-term. An emerging strategic plan is in the works and there’s a strong

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focus on health equity, he said. “It’s not just about having the right physicians and having enough resources available,” he said. “We have to figure out how to distribute those resources throughout a rural community, a geographically spread out community. We’ve got to do a better job with health equity.” He said the hospital’s finances had improved in the past year. “On an operating basis we improved by almost $3 million,” he said. “It was very strange because our admissions went down significantly. Our patient days went up. People are staying in the hospital a lot longer. That’s because when people came in with COVID some stayed for longer than a month.” Franklin said AGH provided $15 million in community impact through things like free care and vaccine clinics.


THE DISPATCH’S PETS OF THE MONTH

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The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

Pet’s Name: Trimper Pet’s Age/Breed: 12-year-old black Lab (who recently passed away) Pet’s Owner: Megan Repass

Pet’s Name: Sadie Pet’s Age/Breed: 5-year-old mix Pet’s Owners: Rich Robin & Rachel Wagner

February 19, 2021

Pet’s Name: Baby Pet’s Age/Breed: 11-year-old American short hair Pet’s Owner: Hunter Simon

Pet’s Name: Lily and Mason Pet’s Age/Breed: poodle mixes Pet’s Owners: Larry, Sherry & Julie Lauer

EDITOR

STEVE GREEN The Dispatch presents the latest edition of its Pets of the Month Contest. Each month one special animal, or two, in some cases, is picked as the cutest photo of the bunch through a private vote of our staff. Here we present this month’s pets, submitted by our readers. On the front page is last month’s winning entry, Rico, owned by Daniella Celia. Those interested in participating in future months’ contests are invited to send their lovable pet photo to us at editor@mdcoastdispatch.com (preferred) or to P.O. Box 467, Berlin, Md. 21811 or drop it off at our office in Berlin at 10012 Old Ocean City Blvd. Please be sure it’s a high-quality photo suitable for reproduction and to include your mailing address, the pet’s name, age and breed and the owner’s first and last name. The next series will appear in this space on March 19.

ADOPT A PET FROM THE SHELTER Pet’s Name: Tucker Pet’s Age/Breed: 1-year-old Australian labradoodle Pet’s Owner: Jackie Rutkowski

Pet’s Name: Milo Pet’s Age/Breed: 5-year-old domestic short hair Pet’s Owner: Janet Nicholson

These Loving Animals, Sponsored Each Month By Local Businesses, Are Available For Adoption At The Ocean City Humane Society: 410-213-0146. To Sponsor A Pet, Call 410-641-4561 • Annually, 10% Of The Proceeds From This Page Are Donated To The Shelter The Humane Society Desperately Needs Volunteers To Help Care For The Cats And Dogs. Any Amount Of Time You Can Spare Will Be Appreciated.

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County Approves Two Airport Projects

February 19, 2021

BY BETHANY HOOPER

STAFF WRITER

SALISBURY – County officials this week approved two budget items for projects at the airport. On Tuesday, the Wicomico County Council voted unanimously on a budget amendment to reallocate $85,000 for a capital project at the Salisbury airport. Earlier this month, Airport Manager Tony Rudy came before the council seeking a budget amendment for the airport’s Taxiway G gate project. He explained the airport had originally budgeted $220,000 in general obligation bond proceeds for the installation of an automated gate on a taxiway near the facility’s new drone hanger. But after realizing the expense of constructing and maintaining the gate, officials opted to update the fencing in that area instead. “That project would only cost around $85,000, as opposed to $220,000,” he said. Rudy explained rather than paying for the project with bond money, the county would use $85,000 earmarked for a concrete ramp rehabilitation. “We had $85,000 actually in pay-go money that was earmarked for the FedEx apron rehabilitation, which we found out was not an airport responsibility …,” he said. “Our plan was to use that money already allocated in pay-go to proceed with this fence project.” Following a public hearing this week, the county council voted unanimously to approve the budget amendment. The council this week also agreed to appropriate $200,000 from the county’s contingency fund for the airport’s water main extension project. George, Miles & Buhr’s Katherine McAllister told officials earlier this month the funds would be used to cover the cost of two change orders. “Mainly they are a result of remobilization costs and the cost for increased materials and technical work that had to be done,” she said. McAllister said the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), a project partner, provided contingency for the construction of the airport water main. She said the county’s contingency funds would be used if MDE was not willing to cover the cost of the change orders. “There are still about $89,000 remaining in the MDE contingency fund bucket,” she said. “This $200,000 will cover any costs MDE is not willing to cover.” In 2019, the county secured more than $4 million in grants and low-interest loans to run municipal water six miles from the Wor-Wic Community College water tower to the airport campus. Essentially, Wicomico County will install the water main, while the City of Salisbury will maintain and operate the completed water system. Construction on the water main extension began in earnest last fall. In addition to potable water at the facility, officials said the new water main is expected to enhance fire protection and increase development potential at the airport’s business park.

Hotel Worker Honored For Lifesaving Effort The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

BY SHAWN J. SOPER

MANAGING EDITOR

OCEAN CITY – A local hotel worker was honored last month with the highest award bestowed by the American Red Cross for his fast-thinking efforts to save an injured child last summer. Last Aug.4, local hotel worker Brian Tingle had to call on his training from the American Red Cross Adult and Pediatric First-Aid-CPR-AED to help save the life of a child at the Carousel Hotel. Tingle was working at the hotel when a severe storm caused several windows to break, showering broken glass throughout the hotel’s common areas. One hotel guest, a young child, was injured by the falling glass and had cuts to their neck and back. Tingle responded

quickly and properly cleaned and medicated the child’s wounds. Tingle also stopped the child’s bleeding and dressed the wounds and remained with the victim maintaining a calm presence until paramedics arrived. According to the American Red Cross, there was no doubt Tingle’s quick actions helped save the child’s life. For his heroic and lifesaving action, Tingle recently received the Red Cross Lifesaving Award for Professional Responders. He was honored with the award during a virtual ceremony last month with representatives from the American Red Cross-Delmarva Chapter along with partnering agencies. Tingle was nominated for the award by Sertified LLC, a private-sector provider of Red Cross training certification. The Red Cross Lifesaving Award

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for Professional Responders is the highest award given by the American Red Cross to individuals or groups of individuals who save or sustain a life using skills and knowledge learned in a Red Cross training services course. “We’re extremely proud to present a Lifesaving Award for Professional Responders to Brian Tingle,” said Red Cross Executive Director Theresa Young. “His actions exemplify our mission to help people prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies.” Red Cross training gives people the knowledge and skills to act in an emergency and save a life. A variety of online, in-person skills sessions and classroom courses are available through organizations such as Sertified. More information can be found at redcross.org/takeaclass.


Wicomico Committee Begins Charter Review Discussions

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The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

BY BETHANY HOOPER

STAFF WRITER

SALISBURY – A list of proposed provisions will be up for discussion as a new committee begins the task of reviewing Wicomico’s charter for possible amendments. On Tuesday, the Wicomico County Council held a work session to discuss several proposed charter provisions that would be reviewed by a newly formed charter review committee. “There’s 31 items,” said council attorney Bob Taylor. “Some of them of course are pretty much cut and dry. Others are not. Some of them are pretty involved and warrant looking at the charters from other counties just to see how other people do things. That takes a lot of time.” Last month, the county council began accepting applications from Wicomico residents interested in serving on the charter review committee, which is convened at least once every 10 years for the purpose of reviewing the charter in its entirety and making recommendations to the county council. When the application process closed this week, officials said, the council had received 45 applications

for the 15-person committee. On Tuesday, the council held a closed work session to evaluate the applications and discuss appointments to the committee, but not before a lengthy discussion on its proposed charter provisions. “These 31 recommendations are just recommendations that have come to the council over the last few years,” said Councilman John Cannon. “This is not a mandate for the committee. These are just items that can be given to the committee for them to make those decisions.” The list of proposed recommendations presented this week touched on several long-debated topics, including the county’s tax revenue cap policy, the appointment and confirmation of department directors and the qualifications of the county executive, to name a few. Another topic for the committee’s consideration is if the county should change its charter back to a county council form of government. Councilman Bill McCain told council members this week he wanted to discuss the proposed provisions with committee members, as they would be the ones making recommendations. Council Administrator Laura Hurley

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said the council would review the committee’s recommendations once they are submitted. Those approved by resolution are then forwarded to the county attorney for certification before going to referendum. Taylor noted, however, that the council did not have to approve every recommendation. “The committee’s recommendations will come back to the council,” he said. “The council could do, essentially, anything it wants.” Council members questioned the number of recommendations that could possibly go to referendum. “I think the decision we’re going to have to make as a council is how far do we go with this,” Cannon said. “I’ve always said the charter as a whole needs to be completely redone, and when it goes to the ballot possibly the general public will be voting for a new charter.” He said when he served on the last charter review committee, several recommendations were not brought to referendum for fear there would be too many ballot questions. “How are we going to take these 31 suggestions – and there will be more this

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committee will recommend – how are we going to get that to the public on a ballot?” he asked. McCain questioned if it should be a revised charter. “If we’re going to change the charter completely, the folks who have volunteered for this will be in for more of a job than they thought they would be in for … ,” Councilman Joe Holloway added. Taylor said overhauling the county charter would take time, but that it could be done. He noted many charter provisions have remained unchanged since the 1960s. “The charter was actually enacted back in the 60’s …,” he said. “When they did the revision to change over to a county executive form of government, they did a complete charter but essentially it was tweaked to the county executive form. There wasn’t much change other than that.” Holloway said the revision would not only take time, but extensive legal work. Councilman Josh Hastings noted there were numerous council recommendations because the charter had not been revised sooner. “I do think we need to have a more ROOFING

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Business And Real Estate News

February 19, 2021

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

Partnership Created On Behavioral Health SALISBURY – The Tri-County Behavioral Health Engagement (TRIBE) has recently been announced as a newly formed collaboration and regional partnership between TidalHealth Peninsula Regional, Atlantic General Hospital and nine behavioral health community partner agencies. The immediate goal is to design behavioral health crisis stabilization centers, or behavioral health urgent care centers. “TRIBE originated from a community partners group that met monthly for about a year with the mission of working together to identify gaps in behavioral health services in the tri-county area, with the goal of not duplicating services and working together to address unmet needs,” said Katherine Smith, Executive Director of TidalHealth Behavioral Health Services. “A grant opportunity gave TRIBE the ability to establish a regional partnership and obtain the resources to address of the community’s biggest identified gaps – namely accessing behavioral health care in a crisis in real time.” TRIBE’s primary function is a threecounty centralized response to reduce emergency department utilization, hospital admissions and readmissions for individuals experiencing behavioral health issues. In addition, the partnership will

increase collaboration with community behavioral health and crisis agencies, including law enforcement, eliminate duplication of services and increase opportunities to help patients experiencing a behavioral health crisis. On the Lower Shore, these behavioral health crisis centers are desperately needed. Currently, individuals who need emergent behavioral health care must either wait for an appointment with a community agency provider or go to their hospital’s local emergency room; neither of these scenarios is ideal. “When opened later this year, individuals experiencing a behavioral health crisis will be able to have their needs met in real time, to feel relief sooner and hopefully avoid needing higher levels of care,” said Tina Simmons, Director of Nursing for Atlantic General Health System. “These centers will play an integral part in the larger continuum of care of behavioral health services currently in operation in

HOME IMPROVEMENT Del.#2007215731

MHIC#76938

Page 35

our communities.” The two crisis centers will essentially serve as behavioral health urgent care centers where individuals can receive crisis respite, observation and intervention in a warm, friendly, homelike community setting. The primary site, which will be near TidalHealth Peninsula Regional in Salisbury, will be open seven days a week with extended hours and feature a safe, home-like environment. A satellite site near Atlantic General Hospital in Berlin will initially welcome patients six days a week with plans to expand to seven days a week. A warm and seamless handoff for follow up care and services with community providers will be arranged that day or the next. Those community provider partners include Lower Shore Clinic, Resource Recovery Center, National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI), Sante Mobile Crisis, Life Crisis Center, Chesapeake Health

HERE’S MY CARD

Services and the health departments of Wicomico, Worcester and Somerset counties. While TidalHealth Peninsula Regional and Atlantic General Hospital are the lead agencies for this endeavor, the nine identified community agencies will be integral to its success, which in turn could result in additional partners in following years. Community partners will play an integral role in developing procedures and protocols and operating the centers. They’ll aid in the coordinated response to individuals in crisis by ensuring a seamless warm handoff for continued patient care. At both locations, behavioral health care providers will seek to relieve immediate crisis symptoms, provide observation, determine levels of care and deflect from unnecessary higher levels of care, like hospital admission. Individuals will be triaged, linked with peer support, and offered brief crisis counseling, medication management services to include psychiatric and substance abuse as appropriate, care navigation and coordination of health needs. Some of the offered services may be completed via telehealth as needed to share resources between sites or as necessitated by the ongoing pandemic. Law enforcement and EMS may transport patients to the center, if allowable by state SEE PAGE 36 MVA LICENSED

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... Business News

Page 36

FROM PAGE 35 regulations. The Health Services Cost Review Commission (HSCRC) Regional Partnership Catalyst Grant program approved five years of funding at just over $11 million. Work has already started on this project. It’s hoped these centers will be open by late summer/early fall 2021.

Power Outages Decrease SALISBURY – Delmarva Power customers across Delaware and Maryland are continuing to experience improvements in the reliability of their energy service, a result of the company’s ongoing efforts to modernize the local energy grid and support customers and communities through the pandemic. The frequency of power outages matched the company’s record performance in 2019, which was a 9% decrease from the previous low set in 2018. Over the past ten years, energy

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch system upgrades and new innovative technologies have reduced the frequency of electric outages by 53% for Delmarva Power customers and communities. “We are committed to providing the best possible service for our customers,” said Tyler Anthony, senior vice president & COO of Pepco Holdings, which includes Delmarva Power. “Tying our alltime low for customer power outages in 2020 is a testament to the ongoing hard work and dedication of our employees to meet this commitment during an especially challenging year when our customers needed us most. With more adults working from home and children learning virtually, we are focused on continuing to provide the reliable energy service they depend on and powering our communities through this pandemic.” Each day, work is performed across Delmarva Power’s service area as part of the company’s ongoing efforts to further improve reliability for customers.

City Purchases Building SALISBURY – NAI Coastal Principal

Joey Gilkerson announced the City of Salisbury’s purchase of Truitt Street Community Center, a 5,000-square-foot building located at 319 Truitt Street in Salisbury. Gilkerson worked with the city to transform the former warehouse into a recreation center for local youth, which ultimately led to their acquisition in January. Prior to purchasing, the city leased the property beginning in 2017. NAI Coastal Advisor Christian Phillips and Tonney Insley of SVN Miller Commercial Real Estate collaborated to co-broker the lease. “When the City approached us with their plans, we knew that we had the tools in place to help bring their vision to life,” said Gilkerson. “Our development partnership allows us to reach beyond the typical offerings of a standard brokerage to provide our clients with qualified insight into renovation feasibility, cost estimation and completion timelines. In this case, we not only identified the property and brokered the transaction, but also acted as the City’s developer and contractor for the Truitt Street project.”

Vaccines’ Impact On Stock Market Wealth Of Knowledge

February 19, 2021

BY KRISTIN COANE

SPECIAL TO THE DISPATCH

BERLIN – If there’s one thing that can move the economy and stock market forward, it’s hope. This year, that hope is being presented in the form of COVID-19 vaccines. Economists and Wall Street analysts have long proclaimed that comprehensive economic recovery is not possible until we have contained the virus. The prospect of wide distribution of effective vaccines and herd immunity by the end of the year has put recovery in our crosshairs. What does this mean for investors? Review your investment portfolio and get your financial house in order. If we are due for improvement, it could be beneficial to get into the market when prices are low, rebalance often and take KRISTIN COANE advantage of market dips for additional investment opportunities. As always, we are here to help guide on the best way to meet your financial goals. This hopeful sentiment was echoed by CNBC’s ever-enthusiastic “Mad Money” host, Jim Cramer. He recently proclaimed that the U.S. stock market will be poised for even greater heights if President Biden is successful in forging a plan to quickly and widely distribute the COVID vaccinations. Phil Orlando, Federated Hermes’ chief equity market strategist and one of Wall Street’s bullish market analysts, advocates a combination of vaccine rollout and additional fiscal stimulus. He believes one of the surefire ways to boost economic growth is to help lower-skilled unemployed people find work. He predicted that by July 4, the U.S. will be coronavirus-free, setting the stage for a “monster market year.” Unfortunately, European stocks continue to struggle despite market exuberance in the U.S. over a new presidential administration. Part of this concern may be that many EU countries have suffered setbacks due to subsequent and more virulent strains of the coronavirus. As before, the U.S. continues to lag on the worst of the effects of the virus as they occur. This foreshadowing makes it even more important that vaccines get into as many arms as possible in the next few months. Market sectors that have suffered terribly from calls for lockdowns and social distancing are likely to benefit the most from widespread distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine. This includes the aviation and hospitality sectors, as well as the office and retail property market in Europe and the U.S. Of course, the opposite could be true: Pandemic beneficiaries could see a loss in revenues once people get out and about — for example, Amazon, Netflix and Zoom Video. (The writer has been part of the Key Financial team for over 15 years. Their entire team can be reached at 410-629-0357.


Technology Continues To Grow In Sports

February 19, 2021

IN DEPTH WITH SAM CARD

BY SAM CARD

SPECIAL TO THE DISPATCH

BERLIN – As we all know the Super Bowl was this month and it seemed to be the highlight for many. It felt like a little piece of “getting back to normal” in the midst of an ongoing pandemic lockdown. With all the snacks, cheering and entertainment that the Super Bowl brings, most don't even remotely understand the increasing role that technology plays in the recruiting, training, production, promotion and enjoyment of professional sports. Many major companies took a step back from advertising at the big game this year, but tech companies gladly stepped in their place to secure some of the most expensive ad slots. There was an extensive list of online based or tech driven newcomers that paid roughly $5.5 million for a 30-second commercial on this year’s game. Even companies that have very little to do with Silicon Valley highlighted the growing role of social media and the always-online lifestyle we have embraced. The ad influx signals the growing power of tech in society and American culture. How we watched the game and ate this year was further proof of this transformation. For ex- SAM CARD ample, rather than large gatherings tech companies predicted a record number of Americans would be streaming the game on their couches. According to CBS Sports, this year's Super Bowl was confirmed as the most-streamed NFL game ever, with streaming in particular up by 65 percent compared to last year. Food delivery companies also saw a spike in business for the game.

Data, Data, Data Another fast trend that is influencing all sports is playing the numbers game. The score of the game is not the only place numbers matter. They are also being used to assess athletes, performance and the competition. From on-field cameras to tracking devices embedded into player equipment they track real-time statistics to make on the fly decisions about players and game time. Most other industries, like manufacturing, have been focused on increasing uptime and production to maximize output forever. With these types of technical tools to measure athleticism of individuals those can now be applied to professional sports as well.

Safety First With the heightened attention surrounding keeping professional athletes safe, specifically from concussions and impacts to the head, there have been technology upgrades to the equipment developed to protect such sensitive parts of each athlete. For example, old helmet designs were phased out with the development of SpeedFlex helmet technology. This technology offers players a customizable smart helmet that includes sensors and magnets that help detect a collision, and disperse the impact. From there data

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

is transmitted wirelessly, where it can be evaluated in real-time. Other equipment, like mouth guards, are also following suit and becoming enabled as well.

events in the future, especially with the ability to attend live events still in question, all by having a VR device on players' uniforms.

Is this Real?

Tech Help For Refs

Virtual Reality is being used to maximize training and spectator experience. Players are now able to practice skills in virtual spaces without fearing injury. They are also able to play different scenarios quickly to help make better decisions on future plays. This predictive training is enabling athletes to train their instinctual and quick judgment skills along with their physical training. From a fan experience can you imagine being on the field with your favorite player? VR is going to transform the broadcasting of live sporting

Even referees are human, which means they can make mistakes. However, technology is seeking to eliminate the possibility of errors being called in the game. While instant replay technology has been around for a while, VR and 360-degree cameras are now giving refs and sporting commentators an unprecedented view of the action. Already in place is goal-line technology in soccer which is a collaboration of live referees and technology to confirm if a goal is scored.

Page 37

Forever Young As with most things in the sports world, the younger the better. That thought is not amiss when it comes to technology either. A focus of professionals is to develop athletes in their teens, by using scaled down versions of their wearable trackers and data platforms to develop performance metrics of high schoolers. The analysis of these metrics can be used to obtain scholarships, adjust training programs, and eventually will adapt to provide detailed nutrition and workout plans by individual and their position on the fields. In the world of sports, technology is building better athletes, and keeping them safer on the field. It is also helping coaches and teams understand the competition and each other's tactics and strengths, as well as aiming for accurate calls. As fans, it’s helping us follow the action, enhance the experience, connect online with our sports heroes, and encourage our buying and viewing behavior. (The writer can be reached at SCard@cards-tech.com. To learn more about Cards Technology, visit www.cards-tech.com.)


Page 38

Best Beats

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

February 19, 2021

on the beach

NATALIE DAVIS BAND The Globe: Friday, Feb. 19 Crawl Street Tavern: Saturday, Feb. 20

NOWHERE SLOW DUO Seacrets: Friday, Feb. 19

FULL CIRCLE DUO Seacrets: Saturday Feb. 19 & Thursday, Feb. 25

LAUREN GLICK DUO Crawl Street Tavern: Sunday, Feb. 21

BEATS BY WAX Pickles Pub: Tuesdays & Thursdays Crawl Street Tavern: Sundays

OTTO GRUNDMAN The Globe: Thursdays

BEATS BY STYLER Pickles Pub: Sunday, Wednesday & Friday

TRIVIA W/ BIGLER The Globe: Monday, Feb. 22


The Dispatch Classifieds

February 19, 2021

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

$15/Week For Minimum Of Five Lines • $2 Thereafter Per Line Display Classified Ads: $20/Week Per Column Inch (Contract Discounts Available)

I NDI A N R I V ER MA R I NA I S NO W HI R I NG! PARAMOUNT CONSTRUCTION SERVICES: Seeking experienced professionals to join our organization in Ocean City, MD. Applicants should have several years of experience with knowledge of kitchen and bathroom remodeling for residential homes and condominiums. Paramount is currently looking for Project Managers, cabinet installers, tile setters, painters/drywall, electricians, and plumbers. Please call 443-664-7689 or send resume to ocjobs@paramountserv.com ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– LANDSCAPE WORKERS NEEDED: Must have valid DL. Reliable transportation to work. Call 410-641-2177. The Moore Companies, Berlin, MD. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– SMALL ENGINE MECHANIC: Needed for local landscape company in the Bishopville-Berlin area. FT/PT. The Moore Companies. 410-641-2177. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– ADMINISTRATIVE ASST: For busy Landscape Contractors office in Berlin. This is a multi-tasking position for detail oriented individual including customer scheduling & routing crews. Strong computer skills and have a pleasant personality. Call The Moore Companies, 410-641-2177. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– MASONRY/CONCRETE LABORERS: Experience preferred. Must have valid drivers license and transportation. Text Kevin at 443859-2437. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– CLEANERS: For condo rentals. Good pay. Spring, Summer, and Fall. Some experience required. Call 443-953-0544. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––

HIRING AT BOTH LOCATIONS ALL POSITIONS INCLUDING MANAGEMENT Apply In Person South Location 31st St. Coastal Hwy. 410-289-2581

Hiring For The Summer Season! May 1 - Sept 30 Weekday and Weekend Hours Available.

3PM-11PM SHIFT

•GENERAL CLERICAL

Apply Online at delawarestatejobs.com For additional information, please contact the Marina office at 302.227.3071 AA/EOE

BUSINESS OPPORTUNITY

Attention Independent Cleaning Contractors in the Ocean City area. Coldwell Banker Vacations is looking for experienced, energetic individuals to deliver Truly Remarkable Service by providing quality cleaning services in a limited time window for the 2021 season. Weekend hours, license, insurance, references and a great work ethic required. Smartphone for Cleaning Portal Access.

Contact Kay, Jen or Sue at 410.723.8507 or email cclean@cbvacations.com

Upcoming Yard Sale? The Dispatch is the best way to get the word out! Print & Online

AWESOME PEOPLE

Holding open interviews

EVERY SAT & SUN 11am-2pm

(Starting Feb. 12th-March 19th)

for:

•SERVERS •HOSTS •BUS STAFF •KITCHEN STAFF •SECURITY

Come by and join our 2021 family!

54th ST OCMD

Behind Chauncey’s Surf Shop

MARYLAND STATE INSPECTOR

We have an opening for an Automotive Maryland State Inspector at our Ocean Pines Goodyear. EXCELLENT PAY & BENEFITS! Please Call 302-344-9846

CARPENTERS & CARPENTERS HELPERS

Must have: Tools, Transportation, Driver’s License

Exp. Required! PATTERSON & SONS BUILDERS

Call 410-641-9530

I NDI A N RI VER MA R INA NOW HI R ING SUMMER POS I TIONS!

•FUEL DOCK ATTENDANT •DOCK HANDS •RAMP ATTENDANTS

Apply Online at delawarestatejobs.com For additional information, please contact the Marina office at 302.227.3071 AA/EOE

PART-TIME FRONTLINE ASSOCIATE

(We Reimburse .40/mile)

NOW HIRING

410-723-5565

•MAINTENANCE •NIGHT WATCH

Start At $15/Hour. Must Have Reliable Transportation. End Of Season Bonus! Text or Call 443-640-7983

PUT YOUR LOGO IN COLOR FOR JUST $10

CONTACT INFORMATION Phone: 410-641-4563 • Fax: 410-641-0966 Email: classifieds@mdcoastdispatch.com Mail: P.O. Box 467, Berlin, Md. 21811

Deadline For Insertions, Cancellations And Payment Is 3 p.m. Tuesday. Pre-Payment Is Required. We Accept Visa & MasterCard.

HELP WANTED

Page 39

Currently hiring manpower for

•STUCCO & EIFS MECHANICS •CARPENTERS •CONCRETE BLOCK •COATINGS SPECIALISTS •FLAT CONCRETE •CONCRETE REPAIRS •PT WELDER •COMMERCIAL CAULKING •WINDOW & DOOR INSTALLERS •WAREHOUSE HELP (DRIVER’S LICENSE REQ’D) Experience Preferred. Tools, transportation & a valid driver’s license are a plus. Competitive benefit package available. Please apply in person at 11935 Hammer Rd, Bishopville, MD, or apply online: http://allstatesconst.com/delmarva-renovations-careers

Sunset Island, Ocean City, MD Accepting Resumes for a

Clubhouse Facility Manager

Full-Time Seasonal Position Personnel Management experience is required. The job would require management of a seasonal staff of 15 people, and oversight of contractors and scheduling. Weekends and Holidays are mandatory. Excellent people skills a must! Salary based on experience. Fax Resume to 410-520-0398 or Email: linda.horensavitz@ casinc.biz

Farmers Bank of Willards has a Part-Time Frontline Associate position available at the North Ocean City location. Looking for professional and motivated individuals with extraordinary customer service skills. Cash handling experience & excellent computer skills a must. Please email your resume to kelly.drexel@fbwbank.com or call Kelly Drexel at 410-250-1512 Application cut off is 03-01-2021 “Equal Employment Opportunity-Affirmative Action Employer”

FULL-TIME PERSONAL BANKER Farmers Bank of Willards has a full-time Personal Banker position available at our West Ocean City location. Looking for professional and motivated individuals with extraordinary customer service skills. Cash handling experience & excellent computer skills a must. Please send resume to 12641 Ocean Gateway, OC, MD 21842 or email: jennie.rice@fbwbank.com Application cut off is 03-01-2021 “Equal Employment Opportunity-Affirmative Action Employer”


The Dispatch

Classifieds

Page 40

CONTACT INFORMATION Phone: 410-641-4563 • Fax: 410-641-0966 Email: classifieds@mdcoastdispatch.com Mail: P.O. Box 467, Berlin, Md. 21811

TOW TRUCK DRIVER We have openings for Tow Truck Drivers for the Bethany/Ocean Pines areas. Must be experienced and dependable. GREAT PAY & BENEFITS!

Call 302-344-9846

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

PART-TIME SCHOOL CUSTODIAN

Worcester Preparatory School, a coeducational college preparatory day school serving over 400 students in grades PK-12, is currently seeking a PT custodian to clean school buildings daily from 3:30 p.m.- 6:30 p.m. CJIS Background Screening required. EOE

Contact: Heather Parsons 410-641-3575 or hparsons@worcesterprep.org

February 19, 2021

AUTOMOTIVE POSITIONS We have openings for Parts & Service Associates with locations in the Millsboro, Bethany, and Ocean City areas. Offering Great Pay and Benefits. Please Call: 302-344-9846

POSEIDON PLUMBING & HOME SERVICES NOW HIRING PLUMBERS. We offer paid training, vacation, and personal days, as well as a quality benefits package including health, dental, vision, and life insurance. Wage is BOE from $12-$30/hour. Based in the Berlin/OC area. What we require: -Min. 4 Years Experience -Valid Drivers License -Reliable Form of Contact -Background Check -Ability to Pass a Drug Test -Positive Attitude & Willingness to Learn

NOW HIRING - YEAR ROUND EXPERIENCED BARTENDER Call 410-726-7061 for Interview

If you feel that you can fill one of these positions, please call us to set up an interview. We can be reach at 410-251-1096.

POSEIDON PLUMBING & HOME SERVICES

PART-TIME FRONTLINE ASSOCIATE Farmers Bank of Willards has a Part-Time Frontline Associate position available at the Talbot Branch, Ocean City location. Looking for professional and motivated individuals with extraordinary customer service skills. Cash handling experience & excellent computer skills a must. Please send resume to 12641 Ocean Gateway, OC, MD 21842 or email: jennie.rice@fbwbank.com Application cut off is 03-01-2021 “Equal Employment Opportunity-Affirmative Action Employer”

RENTALS

COMMERCIAL

WINTER RENTAL: 122nd St., ocean side, 1BR, 1BA condo. Clean, Cozy, Furnished. Non smoking. $700/mo + elec. & sec. dep. Water incl. 443-373-5638. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– YEAR ROUND: 70th St., OC, MD. Avail. in April. Y/R 2nd flr, unfurnished apt., 1 block from ocean. 2BR/1BA, W/D. $1800/mo + util. + 1 mon. sec. dep. req’d. Application and background check performed. Call Denice 443-497-0140. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––

UPSCALE MIDTOWN OFFICE SPACE FOR RENT: 2,130 sq.ft. No CAM fees. 443-880-2225. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– HAIR SALON: Takeover opportunity for experienced hair stylist. Hairworks Salon in business for 38+ years, 16th St., OC. Owner wishes to retire, will work for new owner. 4 chairs, 2 sinks. Rent $1750/month, starting in April. Call Tony at 202-641-6166. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– FOR LEASE: Retail Banking Center with drive thru. Contact Brian Gamm. 443-880-2225. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– WEST O.C. OFFICE/RETAIL SPACES AVAILABLE: 1 OfficeRetail and 1 Warehouses. Plenty of Parking. 443-497-4200. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––

WEEKLY RENTALS Poolfront Room $215. Efficiency Room $245. 2 BR Apartment $350. 3 BR Suite $400.

Burgundy Inn Come Join Our Winning Team! The Carousel Group will be holding an onsite Job Fair Wednesday, March 3rd from 11am to 5pm for the following positions:

Overnight Front Desk Front Desk Recreation Attendant Housekeeping Supervisors Room Attendant Houseperson Laundry Maintenance Restaurant Supervisor Hostess/Cashier Barista Restaurant Server Line Cook Kitchen Utility We are looking for experienced personnel with customer service skills. Must be flexible with hours. If unable to attend the Job Fair, email resume to jobs@carouselhotel.com or stop by and complete an application at the Front Desk. We require satisfactory pre-employment drug testing and background check. All health guidelines will be strictly followed to include face masks, social distancing, and sanitizing.

Carousel Resort Hotel & Condominiums 11700 Coastal Highway Ocean City, MD 21842 EOE

1210 Philadelphia Ave.

410-289-8581

PETS

Upcoming Yard Sale? The Dispatch is the BEST way to get the word out!

STUD SERVICES: 10 month old Labradoodle. Extremely well tempered. Breeding papers available. Please contact Ben at 443-4930686. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––

FOR SALE

SERVICES

COLLECTIBLES: 10 Hummel Plates Exc. Cond. ($125/set). 8 German Steins ($100/set), Tyrolia Mega Shadow Skis w/ bag & poles (BO). Cocktail Ring, 18K yellow gold, .75 TCW diamonds, GHSI 1 (BO). Rocking Chair ($75). Text for pictures 443-727-9018. ––––––––––––––––––––––––––– CASUAL DESIGNER CLOTHES: Sizes 10/12/14/16/S/M/L/XL and shoes (7,9,10). Reasonably priced from $5-$50? Call or Text for pics 443-727-9018. –––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Ceja’s Landscaping & More!

•YARD MAINTENANCE •PAINTING •POWER WASHING 410-251-3425 410-202-2545

The Dispatch Is On Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter! Follow Us Today And Get The Daily News Updates As They Happen!


The Dispatch

February 19, 2021

LEGAL RATES

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

Legal Notices

Legal advertising rate is $7 per column inch. Deadline for all legal advertising is Tuesday at noon. For more information, call 410-641-4563 or fax 410-641-0966.

THIRD INSERTION NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT NOTICE TO CREDITORS NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS ESTATE NO. 18582 To all persons interested in the estate of JAMES D. MCGOLDRICK, ESTATE NO. 18582. Notice is given that KATHLEEN MCGOLDRICK, 10850 BELLERIVE LANE, BERLIN, MD 21811 was on, JANUARY 25, 2021, appointed Personal Representative of the estate of JAMES D. MCGOLDRICK, who died on JANUARY 11, 2021, with a will. Further information can be obtained by reviewing the estate file in the office of the Register of Wills or by contacting the personal representative or the attorney. All persons having any objection to the appointment (or to the probate of the decedent’s will) shall file their objections with the Register of Wills on or before the 25TH day of JULY, 2021. Any person having a claim against the decedent must present the claim to the undersigned personal representative or file it with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned on or before the earlier of the following dates: (1) Six months from the date of the decedent's death, except if the decedent died before October 1, 1992, nine months from the date of the decedent's death; or (2) Two months after the personal representative mails or otherwise delivers to the creditor a copy of this published notice or other written notice, notifying the creditor that the claim will be barred unless the creditor presents the claims within two months from the mailing or other delivery of the notice. A claim not presented or filed on or before that date, or any extension provided by law, is unenforceable thereafter. Claim forms may be obtained from the Register of Wills. Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 05, 2021 KATHLEEN MCGOLDRICK Personal Representative

True Test Copy TERRI WESTCOTT Register of Wills for Worcester County Room 102 - Court House One W. Market Street Snow Hill, MD 21863-1074 3x, 02-05, 02-12, 02-19

THIRD INSERTION

TERESA M COONEY, ESQ THE LAW OFFICE OF JAMES L. MAYER, P.A. 2500 WALLINGTON WAY STE 102 MARRIOTTSVILLE, MD 21044 NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT NOTICE TO CREDITORS NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS ESTATE NO. 18583 To all persons interested in the estate of LEILA MAY BEDARD, ESTATE NO. 18583. Notice is given that CHERYL BISSELL, 240 CHARLESTON ROAD, BERLIN, MD 21811 and DEAN CLARK, 8301 WHITEBARK COURT, ELLICOTT CITY, MD 21043 was on, JANUARY 27, 2021, appointed Personal Representative of the estate of LEILA MAY BEDARD, who died on DECEMBER 19, 2020, with a will. Further information can be obtained by reviewing the estate file in the office of the Register of Wills or by contacting the personal representative or the attorney. All persons having any objection to the appointment (or to the probate of the decedent’s will) shall file their objections with the Register of Wills on or before the 27TH day of JULY, 2021. Any person having a claim against the decedent must present the claim to the undersigned personal representative or file it with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned on or before the earlier of the following dates: (1) Six months from the date of the decedent's death, except if the decedent died before October 1, 1992, nine months from the date of the decedent's death; or (2) Two months after the personal representative mails or otherwise delivers to the creditor a copy of this published notice or other written notice, notifying the creditor that the claim will

be barred unless the creditor presents the claims within two months from the mailing or other delivery of the notice. A claim not presented or filed on or before that date, or any extension provided by law, is unenforceable thereafter. Claim forms may be obtained from the Register of Wills. Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 05, 2021 CHERYL BISSELL Personal Representative DEAN CLARK Personal Representative True Test Copy TERRI WESTCOTT Register of Wills for Worcester County Room 102 - Court House One W. Market Street Snow Hill, MD 21863-1074 3x, 02-05, 02-12, 02-19

THIRD INSERTION

JAMES H. PORTER JR, ESQ 111 VINE STREET POCOMOKE CITY, MD 21851 NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT NOTICE TO CREDITORS NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS ESTATE NO. 18592 To all persons interested in the estate of MARY LOUISE HILLARD, ESTATE NO. 18592. Notice is given that LINDA POWELL CUTTONE, 31821 WILDWOOD DRIVE, PRINCESS ANNE, MD 21853 was on, FEBRUARY 01, 2021, appointed Personal Representative of the estate of MARY LOUISE HILLARD, who died on NOVEMBER 15, 2020, with a will. Further information can be obtained by reviewing the estate file in the office of the Register of Wills or by contacting the personal representative or the attorney. All persons having any objection to the appointment (or to the probate of the decedent’s will) shall file their objections with the Register of Wills on or before the 1ST day of AUGUST, 2021. Any person having a claim against the decedent must present the claim to the undersigned personal representative or file it with the Register of Wills with a copy

to the undersigned on or before the earlier of the following dates: (1) Six months from the date of the decedent's death, except if the decedent died before October 1, 1992, nine months from the date of the decedent's death; or (2) Two months after the personal representative mails or otherwise delivers to the creditor a copy of this published notice or other written notice, notifying the creditor that the claim will be barred unless the creditor presents the claims within two months from the mailing or other delivery of the notice. A claim not presented or filed on or before that date, or any extension provided by law, is unenforceable thereafter. Claim forms may be obtained from the Register of Wills. Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 05, 2021 LINDA POWELL CUTTONE Personal Representative True Test Copy TERRI WESTCOTT Register of Wills for Worcester County Room 102 - Court House One W. Market Street Snow Hill, MD 21863-1074 3x, 02-05, 02-12, 02-19

THIRD INSERTION

JAMES H. PORTER JR, ESQ 111 VINE STREET POCOMOKE CITY, MD 21851 NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT NOTICE TO CREDITORS NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS ESTATE NO. 18593 To all persons interested in the estate of DEAN ALAN BUNDICK, ESTATE NO. 18593. Notice is given that WILLIAM L. BUNDICK, 1949 CEDAR HALL ROAD, POCOMOKE CITY, MD 21851 was on, FEBRUARY 01, 2021, appointed Personal Representative of the estate of DEAN ALAN BUNDICK, who died on JANUARY 04, 2021, without a will. Further information can be obtained by reviewing the estate file in the office of the Register of Wills or by contacting the personal representative or the attorney. All persons having any objection to the appointment (or to the probate of the decedent’s will) shall file their objections with the Register of Wills on or before the 1ST day of AUGUST, 2021. Any person having a claim against the decedent must present the claim to the undersigned personal representative or file it with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned on or be-

Page 41 fore the earlier of the following dates: (1) Six months from the date of the decedent's death, except if the decedent died before October 1, 1992, nine months from the date of the decedent's death; or

vals: Timeshare

Price

Wk 08, #Bh34 Wk 13, #Bh34 Wk 39, #Bh34 Wk 05, #Bn40

$50.00 $50.00 $1000.00 Not Offered For Sale Not Offered For Sale $50.00 $1000.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00

Wk 16, #Bn40 (2) Two months after the personal representative mails or otherwise delivers to the creditor a copy of this published notice or other written notice, notifying the creditor that the claim will be barred unless the creditor presents the claims within two months from the mailing or other delivery of the notice. A claim not presented or filed on or before that date, or any extension provided by law, is unenforceable thereafter. Claim forms may be obtained from the Register of Wills. Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 05, 2021 WILLIAM L. BUNDICK Personal Representative True Test Copy TERRI WESTCOTT Register of Wills for Worcester County Room 102 - Court House One W. Market Street Snow Hill, MD 21863-1074 3x, 02-05, 02-12, 02-19

THIRD INSERTION

LESLIE LOBOS, TRUSTEE PINES PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR WORCESTER COUNTY, MD C-23-CV-20-000291 VILLAS OF OCEAN PINES BORDERLINKS TIMESHARE OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 Plaintiff vs. JOHN COUTURE, et al. Defendants NOTICE ORDERED, by the Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland this 1st day of February, 2021, that the foreclosure sale of the properties mentioned in these proceeedings, made and reported by Leslie Lobos, Trustee, be RATIFIED AND CONFIRMED, unless cause to the contrary thereof be shown on or before the 1st day of March, 2021, provided a copy of this Order be inserted in some daily newspaper printed in Worcester County, Maryland once in each of three successive weeks, before the 22nd day of February, 2021. The Report of Sale filed in the above case states the amount of the sales to be as indicated below for the referenced time-share inter-

Wk 09, #Bq43 Wk 40, #Bq43 Wk 43, #Bq43 Wk 01, #Br44 Wk 08, #Br44 Wk 09, #Br44 Wk 42, #Br44 Wk 04, #Bx50 Wk 11, #Bx50 Wk 16, #Bx50

Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 05, 2021 TRUE TEST COPY SUSAN R. BRANIECKI Clerk of the Circuit Court Worcester County, MD 3x, 02-05, 02-12, 02-19

SECOND INSERTION

HASSANI, FOCAS & FIFER, P.A. ERIC T. FIFER ESQ. 22 WEST PENNSYLVANIA AVENUE, SUITE 606 TOWSON, MD 21204 NOTICE TO CREDITORS OF APPOINTMENT OF FOREIGN PERSONAL REPRESENTATIVE ESTATE NO. 18599 Notice is given that the REGISTER OF WILLS AND ORPHANS’ COURT of YORK COUNTY, PA, appointed DELOYCE V. BARNHART, 2019 ROSEWOOD LANE, YORK, PA 17403 as the EXECUTOR of the Estate of JACOB A. BARNHART, who died on SEPTEMBER 7, 2020, domiciled in MARYLAND, USA. The Maryland resident agent for service of process is ERIC T. FIFER, whose address is 22 WEST PENNSYLVANIA AVE STE 606, TOWSON, MD 21204. At the time of death, the decedent owned real or leasehold property in the following MARYLAND counties: WORCESTER. All persons having claims against the decedent must file their claims with the Register of Wills for Worcester County with a copy to the foreign personal representative on or before the earlier of the following dates: (1) Six months from the date of the decedent's death, except if the decedent died before October 1, 1992, nine months from the date of the decedent's death; or (2) Two months after the foreign personal representative mails or delivers to the creditor a copy of this published notice or other written notice, notifying the creditor that the claim will be barred unless the creditor presents the claim within


The Dispatch

Page 42

Legal Notices

LEGAL RATES Legal advertising rate is $7 per column inch. Deadline for all legal advertising is Tuesday at noon. For more information, call 410-641-4563 or fax 410-641-0966.

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch decedent’s will) shall file their objections with the Register of Wills on or before the 8th day of AUGUST, 2021. Any person having a claim against the decedent must present the claim to the undersigned personal representative or file it with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned on or before the earlier of the following dates:

two months from the mailing or other delivery of the notice. Claims filed after that date or after a date extended by law will be barred.

of the decedent's death, except if the decedent died before October 1, 1992, nine months from the date of the decedent's death; or

(1) Six months from the date of the decedent's death, except if the decedent died before October 1, 1992, nine months from the date of the decedent's death; or

Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 12, 2021

(2) Two months after the personal representative mails or otherwise delivers to the creditor a copy of this published notice or other written notice, notifying the creditor that the claim will be barred unless the creditor presents the claims within two months from the mailing or other delivery of the notice. A claim not presented or filed on or before that date, or any extension provided by law, is unenforceable thereafter. Claim forms may be obtained from the Register of Wills.

(2) Two months after the personal representative mails or otherwise delivers to the creditor a copy of this published notice or other written notice, notifying the creditor that the claim will be barred unless the creditor presents the claims within two months from the mailing or other delivery of the notice. A claim not presented or filed on or before that date, or any extension provided by law, is unenforceable thereafter. Claim forms may be obtained from the Register of Wills.

Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 12, 2021

Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 12, 2021

MARGARET WOOLLEN RUSH Personal Representative

DIANA RUTH WHELAN Personal Representative

DELOYCE V. BARNHART Foreign Personal Representative True Test Copy TERRI WESTCOTT Register of Wills for Worcester County Room 102 - Court House One W. Market Street Snow Hill, MD 21863-1074 3x, 02-12, 02-19, 02-26

SECOND INSERTION

MARIANNA BATIE ESQ LAW OFFICE OF MARIANNA BATIE 9748 STEPHEN DECATUR HIGHWAY, SUITE 112 OCEAN CITY, MD 21842 NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT NOTICE TO CREDITORS NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS ESTATE NO. 18601 To all persons interested in the estate of MARGARET WOOLLEN REHKEMPER, ESTATE NO. 18601. Notice is given that MARGARET WOOLLEN RUSH, 4 OXMORE FLINT ROAD SW APT. B1, DECATUR, AL 35603 was on, FEBRUARY 08, 2021, appointed Personal Representative of the estate of MARGARET WOOLLEN REHKEMPER, who died on JANUARY 25, 2021, with a will. Further information can be obtained by reviewing the estate file in the office of the Register of Wills or by contacting the personal representative or the attorney. All persons having any objection to the appointment (or to the probate of the decedent’s will) shall file their objections with the Register of Wills on or before the 8th day of AUGUST, 2021. Any person having a claim against the decedent must present the claim to the undersigned personal representative or file it with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned on or before the earlier of the following dates: (1) Six months from the date

True Test Copy TERRI WESTCOTT Register of Wills for Worcester County Room 102 - Court House One W. Market Street Snow Hill, MD 21863-1074 3x, 02-12, 02-19, 02-26

SECOND INSERTION

THOMAS P. DOWNS ESQ. THE DOWNS LAW FIRM, P.C. 322 MAIN STREET, SUITE 102 LAUREL, MD 20707 NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT NOTICE TO CREDITORS NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS ESTATE NO. 18602 To all persons interested in the estate of JOAN M. WILSON, ESTATE NO. 18602. Notice is given that DIANA RUTH WHELAN, 7619 SUNFLOWER DRIVE, MARGATE, FL 33063 was on, FEBRUARY 08, 2021, appointed Personal Representative of the estate of JOAN M. WILSON, who died on DECEMBER 09, 2020, without a will. Further information can be obtained by reviewing the estate file in the office of the Register of Wills or by contacting the personal representative or the attorney. All persons having any objection to the appointment (or to the probate of the

True Test Copy TERRI WESTCOTT Register of Wills for Worcester County Room 102 - Court House One W. Market Street Snow Hill, MD 21863-1074 3x, 02-12, 02-19, 02-26

FIRST INSERTION

NOTICE OF APPOINTMENT NOTICE TO CREDITORS NOTICE TO UNKNOWN HEIRS ESTATE NO. 18604 To all persons interested in the estate of A. LEONARD LENTOWSKI AKA ALBIN LEONARD LENTOWSKI, ESTATE NO. 18604. Notice is given that DIANE MURPHY, 1319 CHEROKEE LANE, BEL AIR, MD 21015 was on, FEBRUARY 09, 2021, appointed Personal Representative of the estate of A. LEONARD LENTOWSKI, who died on JANUARY 08, 2021, with a will. Further information can be obtained by reviewing the estate file in the office of the Register of Wills or by contacting the personal representative or the attorney. All persons having any objection to the appointment (or to the probate of the decedent’s will) shall file their objections with the Register of Wills on or before the 9th day of AUGUST, 2021. Any person having a claim

against the decedent must present the claim to the undersigned personal representative or file it with the Register of Wills with a copy to the undersigned on or before the earlier of the following dates: (1) Six months from the date of the decedent's death, except if the decedent died before October 1, 1992, nine months from the date of the decedent's death; or (2) Two months after the personal representative mails or otherwise delivers to the creditor a copy of this published notice or other written notice, notifying the creditor that the claim will be barred unless the creditor presents the claims within two months from the mailing or other delivery of the notice. A claim not presented or filed on or before that date, or any extension provided by law, is unenforceable thereafter. Claim forms may be obtained from the Register of Wills. Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 19, 2021 DIANE MURPHY Personal Representative True Test Copy TERRI WESTCOTT Register of Wills for Worcester County Room 102 - Court House One W. Market Street Snow Hill, MD 21863-1074 3x, 02-19, 02-26, 03-05

FIRST INSERTION

LESLIE LOBOS, TRUSTEE PINES PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR WORCESTER COUNTY, MD C-23-CV-20-000292 VILLAS OF OCEAN PINES BORDERLINKS TIMESHARE OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 Plaintiff vs. DANNY WAYNE MEANS, et al. Defendants NOTICE ORDERED, by the Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland this 9th day of February, 2021, that the foreclosure sale of the properties mentioned in these proceeedings, made and reported by Leslie Lobos, Trustee, be RATIFIED AND CONFIRMED, unless cause to the contrary thereof be shown on or before the 15th day of March, 2021, provided a copy of this Order be inserted in some daily newspaper printed in Worcester County, Maryland once in each of three successive weeks, before the

February 19, 2021 8th day of March, 2021. The Report of Sale filed in the above case states the amount of the sales to be as indicated below for the referenced time-share intervals: Timeshare

Price

Wk 44, #Ay25 Wk 45, #Ay25 Wk 47, #Ay25 Wk 50, #Ay25 Wk 52, #Ay25 Wk 18, #Bb28 Wk 36, #Bb28 Wk 47, #Bb28 Wk 14, #Bc29 Wk 46, #Bc29 Wk 50, #Bc29 Wk 05, #Bf32 Wk 20, #Bf32 Wk 03, #Bg33 Wk 49, #Bg33 Wk 50, #Bg33 Wk 07, #Bh34

$50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $1000.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $1000.00 $50.00 $50.00 $1000.00 $50.00

Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 19, 2021 TRUE TEST COPY SUSAN R. BRANIECKI Clerk of the Circuit Court Worcester County, MD 3x, 02-19, 02-26, 03-05

FIRST INSERTION

LESLIE LOBOS, TRUSTEE PINES PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR WORCESTER COUNTY, MD C-23-CV-20-000296 VILLAS OF OCEAN PINES BORDERLINKS TIMESHARE OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 Plaintiff vs. LARRY ALLIO, et al. Defendants NOTICE ORDERED, by the Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland this 9th day of February, 2021, that the foreclosure sale of the properties mentioned in these proceeedings, made and reported by Leslie Lobos, Trustee, be RATIFIED AND CONFIRMED, unless cause to the contrary thereof be shown on or before the 15th day of March, 2021, provided a copy of this Order be inserted in some daily newspaper printed in Worcester County, Maryland once in each of three successive weeks, before the 8th day of March, 2021. The Report of Sale filed in the above case states the amount of the sales to be as indicated below for the referenced time-share intervals: Timeshare

Price

Wk 38, #Bh34

$1000.00

Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch

Date of Publication FEBRUARY 19, 2021 TRUE TEST COPY SUSAN R. BRANIECKI Clerk of the Circuit Court Worcester County, MD 3x, 02-19, 02-26, 03-05

FIRST INSERTION

LESLIE LOBOS, TRUSTEE PINES PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR WORCESTER COUNTY, MD C-23-CV-20-000297 VILLAS OF OCEAN PINES BORDERLINKS TIMESHARE OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 Plaintiff vs. JOHN C DREXEL, et al. Defendants NOTICE ORDERED, by the Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland this 9th day of February, 2021, that the foreclosure sale of the properties mentioned in these proceeedings, made and reported by Leslie Lobos, Trustee, be RATIFIED AND CONFIRMED, unless cause to the contrary thereof be shown on or before the 15th day of March, 2021, provided a copy of this Order be inserted in some daily newspaper printed in Worcester County, Maryland once in each of three successive weeks, before the 8th day of March, 2021. The Report of Sale filed in the above case states the amount of the sales to be as indicated below for the referenced time-share intervals: Timeshare

Price

Wk 17, #Bx50 Wk 36, #Bx50

$50.00 Not Offered For Sale $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 Not Offered For Sale Not Offered For Sale Not Offered For Sale Not Offered For Sale Not Offered For Sale

Wk 43, #Bx50 Wk 46, #Bx50 Wk 47, #Bx50 Wk 52, #Bx50 Wk 02, #By51 Wk 15, #By51 Wk 43, #By51 Wk 44, #By51 Wk 52, #By51

Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 19, 2021 TRUE TEST COPY SUSAN R. BRANIECKI Clerk of the Circuit Court Worcester County, MD 3x, 02-19, 02-26, 03-05


The Dispatch

Legal Notices

February 19, 2021

The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

LEGAL RATES

Legal advertising rate is $7 per column inch. Deadline for all legal advertising is Tuesday at noon. For more information, call 410-641-4563 or fax 410-641-0966.

FIRST INSERTION LESLIE LOBOS, TRUSTEE PINES PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR WORCESTER COUNTY, MD C-23-CV-20-000271 BORDERLINKS I TIME INTERVAL ASSOCIATION, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 Plaintiff vs. SHARON PRETTYMAN, et al. Defendants NOTICE ORDERED, by the Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland this 11th day of February, 2021, that the foreclosure sale of the properties mentioned in these proceeedings, made and reported by Leslie Lobos, Trustee, be RATIFIED AND CONFIRMED, unless cause to the contrary thereof be shown on or before the 15th day of March, 2021, provided a copy of this Order be inserted in some daily newspaper printed in Worcester County, Maryland once in each of three successive weeks, before the 8th day of March, 2021. The Report of Sale filed in the above case states the amount of the sales to be as indicated below for the referenced time-share intervals: Timeshare Wk 20, #Bi35 Wk 40, #Bi35 Wk 05, #Bj36 Wk 08, #Bj36 Wk 10, #Bj36 Wk 14, #Bj36 Wk 19, #Bj36 Wk 18, #Bk37 Wk 47, #Bk37 Wk 48, #Bk37 Wk 04, #B041 Wk 14, #B041 Wk 40, #B041 Wk 41, #B041 Wk 44, #B041 Wk 01, #Bz52 Wk 02, #Bz52 Wk 11, #Cb54 Wk 11, #Cb54 Wk 11, #Cb54

Price $1000.00 $1000.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 Not Offered For Sale $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $1000.00 $1000.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 $50.00 Not Offered For Sale $50.00

Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 19, 2021 TRUE TEST COPY SUSAN R. BRANIECKI Clerk of the Circuit Court Worcester County, MD 3x, 02-19, 02-26, 03-05

FIRST INSERTION

LESLIE LOBOS, ESQ. IN-HOUSE COUNSEL PINES PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR WORCESTER COUNTY, MARYLAND CASE NO. C-23-CV-21-000012 VILLAS OF OCEAN PINES BORDERLINKS TIMESHARE OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 Plaintiff v. DOROTHY MATCHETT, ET AL. Defendants TRUSTEE’S SALE OF TIME SHARE INTERVALS IN THE VILLAS OF OCEAN PINES, BORDERLINKS CONDOMINIUM, OCEAN PINES, MD By virtue of a certain Claim of Lien recorded among the Land Records of Worcester County, Maryland, and pursuant to the Order of the Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland, Case No. C-23-CV-21-000012, the undersigned Trustee, will offer for sale at public auction at the entrance of the Villas of Ocean Pines, located at, 438 Ocean Parkway, Ocean Pines, Maryland, the following described property located in Ocean Pines, Worcester County, Maryland, on Monday, March 08, 2021 at 11:00 a.m., the following timeshare intervals: Condomimium Unit Ag7 Am13 Am13 Bb28 Bb28

Time Interval 18 14 49 9 43

Each time interval being one week per year in the corre-

sponding unit, each unit being part of the Villas of Ocean Pines, including an undivided interest in the common elements thereof, as established pursuant to a Declaration of Condominium and Timeshare recorded among the Land Records of Worcester County, Maryland and subsequent Declarations of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions, as to each condominium unit and recorded among the aforesaid Land Records. The property will be sold in an “as is” condition and subject to conditions, restrictions and agreements of record affecting the same, if any, and with no warranties and guarantees. A secured party may bid and shall be excused from deposit requirements. The Trustee reserves the right to withdraw any interval from the sale and/or to reject any and all bids. Terms of Sale: A deposit in the full amount of the sales price per time interval will be required at the time of sale, such deposit to be in cash or check. Cost of all documentary stamps, transfer taxes, 2021 maintenance fees and all other settlement costs shall be borne by the purchaser. The date of settlement shall be within fifteen (15) days after final ratification by the Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland, time being of the essence; otherwise the deposit will be forfeited and the property will be resold at the risk and expense of the defaulting purchaser, or in any manner designated by the Trustee; or, without forfeiting deposit, the Seller may exercise any of its legal or equitable rights against the defaulting purchaser. For more information, call: Leslie Lobos, Esq., Trustee, at 240-449-8862. Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 19, 2021 3x, 02-19, 02-26, 03-05

FIRST INSERTION

LESLIE LOBOS, ESQ. IN-HOUSE COUNSEL PINES PROPERTY MANAGEMENT, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 IN THE CIRCUIT COURT FOR

Page 43 Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland, Case No. C-23-CV-21-000016, the undersigned Trustee, will offer for sale at public auction at the entrance of the Villas of Ocean Pines, located at, 438 Ocean Parkway, Ocean Pines, Maryland, the following described property located in Ocean Pines, Worcester County, Maryland, on Monday, March 08, 2021 at 11:00 a.m., the following timeshare intervals:

WORCESTER COUNTY, MARYLAND CASE NO. C-23-CV-21-000016 VILLAS OF OCEAN PINES BORDERLINKS TIMESHARE OWNERS ASSOCIATION, INC. 11029 CATHELL ROAD BERLIN, MD 21811 Plaintiff v. DEBORAH ERTAFA, ET AL. Defendants TRUSTEE’S SALE OF TIME SHARE INTERVALS IN THE VILLAS OF OCEAN PINES, BORDERLINKS CONDOMINIUM, OCEAN PINES, MD By virtue of a certain Claim of Lien recorded among the Land Records of Worcester County, Maryland, and pursuant to the Order of the

Condomimium Unit Am13 Bf32 Bg33 Bg33 An14 An14 Br44

Time Interval 19 45 5 7 8 44 7

Each time interval being one week per year in the corresponding unit, each unit being part of the Villas of Ocean Pines, including an undivided interest in the common elements thereof, as established pursuant to a Declaration of Condominium and Timeshare recorded among the Land Records of Worcester County, Maryland and subsequent Declarations of Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions, as to each condominium unit and recorded among the aforesaid Land Records. The property will be sold in an “as is” condition and

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subject to conditions, restrictions and agreements of record affecting the same, if any, and with no warranties and guarantees. A secured party may bid and shall be excused from deposit requirements. The Trustee reserves the right to withdraw any interval from the sale and/or to reject any and all bids. Terms of Sale: A deposit in the full amount of the sales price per time interval will be required at the time of sale, such deposit to be in cash or check. Cost of all documentary stamps, transfer taxes, 2021 maintenance fees and all other settlement costs shall be borne by the purchaser. The date of settlement shall be within fifteen (15) days after final ratification by the Circuit Court for Worcester County, Maryland, time being of the essence; otherwise the deposit will be forfeited and the property will be resold at the risk and expense of the defaulting purchaser, or in any manner designated by the Trustee; or, without forfeiting deposit, the Seller may exercise any of its legal or equitable rights against the defaulting purchaser. For more information, call: Leslie Lobos, Esq., Trustee, at 240-449-8862. Name of Newspaper: Maryland Coast Dispatch Date of Publication FEBRUARY 19, 2021 3x, 02-19, 02-26, 03-05

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The Dispatch

Page 44

Forever In Memory Of Our Founder, Dick Lohmeyer (May 25, 1927-May 5, 2005) The Dispatch, Serving Greater Ocean City Since 1984, Is Published By Maryland Coast Dispatch Inc. Weekly On Friday Mornings MAILING ADDRESS: P.O. Box 467, Berlin, Md. 21811 PHYSICAL ADDRESS: 10012 Old Ocean City Blvd. Berlin, Md. 21811 PHONE: 410-641-4561 FAX: 410-641-0966 WEBSITES: www.mdcoastdispatch.com www.facebook.com/thedispatchoc J. STEVEN GREEN Publisher/Editor editor@mdcoastdispatch.com

NEWS DEPARTMENT SHAWN J. SOPER Managing Editor ssoper@mdcoastdispatch.com CHARLENE SHARPE Staff Writer/Copy Editor csharpe@mdcoastdispatch.com BETHANY HOOPER Staff Writer bhooper@mdcoastdispatch.com CHRIS PARYPA Photographer

SALES DEPARTMENT TERRI FRENCH Account Executive Entertainment Editor terri@mdcoastdispatch.com JEANETTE DESKIEWICZ Account Executive jeanette@mdcoastdispatch.com

ART DEPARTMENT COLE GIBSON Art Director cole@mdcoastdispatch.com DAVID HOOKS Graphic Artist/Webmaster dhooks@mdcoastdispatch.com

BUSINESS OFFICE Bookkeeper/Classifieds Manager classifieds@mdcoastdispatch.com

The Maryland Coast Dispatch (USPS #015125) is an official and legal newspaper for Worcester County. Periodical postage paid at Berlin, Maryland, and additional mailing offices. The Maryland Coast Dispatch, 10012 Old Ocean City Blvd., Berlin, Md. 21811, is published weekly on Friday mornings, 52 weeks a year. Subscription rates are $75 per year, $55 for six months. POSTMASTER: Please send change of address to Maryland Coast Dispatch, P.O. Box 467, Berlin, Maryland 21811. Maryland Coast Dispatch offices are located at Route 346 and Graham Avenue, Berlin, Maryland.

Confidence, Industry Norms Key To New Contract The Dispatch/Maryland Coast Dispatch

February 19, 2021

HOW WE SEE IT

Worcester County Superintendent of Schools Lou Taylor and the Board of Education formalized a second fouryear contract this week. The new contract represents a significant increase – about 13% -- over his current salary, but a little research shows his new salary of $210,000 effective July 1 is consistent with counterparts in Maryland and across the country. It’s natural for some folks to question the salary (the average teacher salary in Worcester County is reportedly $55,000, after all), but perspective is needed. Taylor has been with the same school system for 38 years and subsequently has accrued salary step and COLA adjustments over the duration of his career. Additionally, school administrative professionals are well paid because they have a tremendous responsibility and with it comes enormous pressure. The severity of the decisions facing school leaders over the last year have been beyond the pale of any other year, but even in normal years the stress over the responsibilities runs high in school administration. Along with job performance and accountability, a major

barometer when it comes to deciding on a salary for a superintendent is the marketplace. A quick survey of Maryland school system superintendents confirmed Taylor’s salary is above the median of $169,551 and ranks in about the 75th percentile of colleagues in Maryland. As a comparison, Wicomico County’s superintendent makes about $212,000 annually to run her school system of 15,000 students. Montgomery County superintendent Jack R. Smith earns $315,000 to run the 165,000-student system. State Superintendent of Schools Dr. Karen Salmon as of July 1, 2020 was working on a $275,000 annual contract. While doing some research on this subject, we came across Howard County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Michael Martirano, who was a co-finalist with Taylor back in 2016 for the Worcester County superintendent post. Martirano at the time was the superintendent of the West Virginia school system. Martirano was passed up for the job here but about six months after losing out on the Worcester job in May 2017 became the interim superintendent in Howard County. He became the

official superintendent in July 2018 with a base salary of $285,000 to lead the school system of 59,000. While the numbers are important especially when taxpayer dollars are concerned, it’s important to maintain a level head. It’s difficult for many folks to quantify the worth of an individual, especially when he or she makes a pittance compared to the subject of the discourse. The reality here is this contract is justified by the board’s confidence in Taylor as well as the community at large. Though it’s been a bumpy ride since last March for public schools navigating this pandemic amid virtual schooling, by and large Taylor has shown the prowess to chart the school system’s course well. He’s a strong and clear communicator, identifying well with Worcester County families because he is a native son. Therefore, while its natural for some to have a little sticker shock over the salary, the reality is he’s well paid because it’s reflective of the education administration market, he’s been with the school system for nearly four decades and is doing an admirable job leading.

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Open Boardwalk Restrooms Editor: Twenty-five boardwalk property and business owners attended the downtown neighborhood watch meetings on Sept. 27, Oct. 20 and Nov. 11. One of the issues they were concerned about was the Boardwalk public restrooms need to stay open until midnight during the tourism season. They complained that the Boardwalk stores cannot adequately accommodate bathroom needs of thousands of Boardwalk visitors who become contentious and belligerent when they cannot use the stores’ restrooms. The town added the public restrooms on the Boardwalk for the specific purpose for the tourist and for relieving the burden of the Boardwalk business community. Keeping the Boardwalk public restrooms open for the tourist would solve the problem. Newt Weaver and Margaret Pillas Ocean City (The writers are the Downtown Neighborhood Watch coordinators.)

Incoherent Babble Editor: Our current political atmosphere is in total disarray. All too often, voters that bother to participate in their civic duty simply check a box because the person has a “D” or an “R” next to their

name. And thanks to gerrymandering, some highly qualified candidates from one party will undoubtedly lose to a woeful candidate from the other party simply due to an edge in voter enrollment. While unfortunate, the results under this system are something that I can understand. However, I am extremely confused about the results of some nonpartisan elections, such as that of the recent election for Mayor and Town Council here in Ocean City. By definition, any victory over an opponent of more than 15% is considered a “landslide”. For example, a 58% to 42% victory would be a landslide. In our election, the top vote getter in the Town Council race received a vote from approximately 75% of voters, while the bottom vote getter garnered support from less than 29%. So, it was a landslide by definition, but much closer than it should have been. The top vote getter with 1,137 votes is a young, ambitious attorney who is well rooted in the community. The bottom vote getter received 439 votes. This last place finisher participated in the Coast Dispatch’s “Candidates Forum” back in October of 2020, has submitted comments on line during Mayor and Town Council meetings and most recently penned a letter to the Coast Dispatch bashing the Mayor and Council in a letter than can only be described as incoherent babble. After

reading it several times, I remain clueless of the purpose of his letter. The Mayor and Town Council have an extremely important job. They are tasked with determining tax policy, growth initiatives, providing a clean, safe and affordable beach for both residents and tourists. Each decision made effects all of us who care about Ocean City. This cannot be overstated. It is shameful that only 23% of registered voters participated in this election. We must do better. Of course, we should all vote, but we should also attempt to follow what is going on in town government. Attend the regular meetings if you can. If you can’t, at least watch them online or the rebroadcast on television so that you can become more informed. An educated electorate is healthy for our town. Assuming that the losing candidate for office voted for himself, this means there were an additional 438 people that did the same thing. These people clearly must not have viewed the candidate forum. I do hope they take the time to read the Letter To Editor printed on Feb. 12, 2021 and ask themselves if they took the election seriously. I strongly encourage all voters to educate themselves on the candidates and to vote for the best person for the job. M. Scott Chismar Crofton and Ocean City SEE NEXT PAGE


February 19, 2021

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR The Death Of A Country Editor: Let me begin with the start of our Republic form of government. It basically started with just three branches of government. They were the Legislative, Executive and the Judicial. I'm sure you who have studied our history realize that it was a unique form of government in that it was different from all other forms of governments at the time of its inception. What was very special about it was that it was a government of, by and for the people. That's all part of the Legislative past however, through the past 232 years the government has grown. Presently, not counting the Military, there are 14 Departments that are active. They are the department of State, Treasury, Justice, Interior, Agriculture, Commerce, Labor, Health & Human Services, Housing & Urban Development, Transportation, Energy, Education, Veterans Affairs and Homeland Security. Do any of you have any idea of what the estimated number of people and cost of these departments is? Not counting the Military the approximate number of employees are 1,276,000 at an approximate cost of a little over $2 trillion annually. If you want to add into this the estimated number of military personal of 2.86 million at an added estimated cost of $722 billion plus as of 2019 and the approximate number of people presently receiving Social Security of a little over $45 million the amount our government is responsible for is well over $3 trillion annually. You realize, of course, the chief way our government gets its money is through taxes. We the people pay 45% of this tax thru personal income tax, 39% is through Social Security and Medicare tax, 12% through corporate income tax, 3% through other taxes and 1% through estate and gift taxes. You should also realize that the money the government gets through taxes pays the salaries of all those presently working for the government and those who have worked for the government and are now retired. Also, those on Social Security receive their payments by collected funds deducted from personal workers salaries. Do you understand now why the debt of our government is almost $28 trillion and counting and that they haven't placed themselves on a budget for over 20 years? I think it's time we the people demand a change in the size and number of departments in our government. Also term limits and what they get after serving might be a good starting point. Just a thought folks, think about it. Paul St. Andre Ocean City

OC Attempting To Halt Wind Editor: As Maryland lawmakers convene in Annapolis for a new legislative ses-

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sion, they will soon celebrate the twoyear mark since passage of the Clean Energy Jobs Act of 2019. They may not know the extent to which the Town of Ocean City is using its tax dollars to halt offshore wind development and, by extension, stall implementation of the Clean Energy Jobs Act. Documents provided to my organization by Ocean City government under the Public Information Act reveal that more than $300,000 in taxpayer money has been spent on a futile effort to stop offshore wind energy. Here is a partial summary of how Ocean City government reports spending public money: Ocean City taxpayers have paid more than $120,000 to the Prince George’s County-based law firm Joseph Greenwald & Lacke to lobby Maryland’s Public Service Commission to stop offshore wind projects more than 20 miles off Maryland’s coast. That expense was in vain since the commission unanimously rejected the town’s request last summer. They paid $92,000 to Annapolis lobbyist Bruce Bereano in an attempt to persuade Governor Hogan to stop offshore wind development. That attempt failed, as Governor Hogan endorsed offshore wind in October and joined a three-state partnership to help Maryland capture offshore wind jobs. Baltimore PR firm KO Public Affairs was paid $45,000 by city government for what the town describes as “a letter to Ocean City residents.” Has there been a more expensive letter in Maryland history? They paid more than $15,000 to a viewshed expert in hopes that he would persuade the Public Service Commission to prohibit a particular kind of wind turbine. That effort failed. They paid $7,500 to an entertainment production firm to choreograph a regulatory hearing held by the Public Service Commission in January 2020. I attended the hearing. The majority of speakers were actually supporters of offshore wind. All told, Ocean City has spent more than $300,000 in taxpayer money in an unsuccessful attempt to stop clean energy’s advancement. They have virtually no results to show for this expensive endeavor. Tax dollars that could have helped close the city’s looming budget deficit are now in the bank accounts of out of town lawyers and lobbyists. Ocean City government should be trying to reap the enormous economic and environmental benefits of offshore wind – not plowing tax dollars into a vain attempt to oppose clean energy and the jobs it will bring to our community. State lawmakers should do their part to remind Ocean City that the Clean Energy Jobs Act is here to stay. Jared Schablein Pittsville (The writer is the chair of the Lower Shore Progressive Caucus.)

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By Publisher/Editor Steve Green

Vaccinations continue to be on the mind of many and understandably so. Health officials report this week approximately 18% of the county’s population (9,381) has received the first vaccine and 7% (3,742) the second vaccine as of Thursday. Worcester County ranks second (behind Kent’s 21%) in Maryland in the proportion of population vaccinated by county. Statewide, there have been 970,457 doses administered with 71% representing the first vaccination. There was some talk this week at the Worcester County Board of Education meeting about teacher vaccination data. Teachers were elevated last month into phase 1C making them eligible for immediate vaccinations, and the Worcester County Health Department and AGH reportedly facilitated their vaccinations. It was learned approximately 738 staff members of the school system (out of approximately 1,050) responded to a recent survey about vaccinations. Of those respondents, 68% have been vaccinated (501); 8% were waiting; 23% were not interested (170). Ocean City is currently advertising its new position of Director of Tourism and Business Development. As is often the case, the job description sets some high hopes for the position. The salary range of the post is $120,000 to $130,000. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. The job posting read in part, “The Town is seeking an experienced, high energy marketing and sales professional to head up Ocean City’s efforts to attract visitors that will enjoy our family friendly atmosphere. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to develop and execute comprehensive short and long term plans to attract visitors, special events, trade shows, and sports tourism that promote Ocean City. This person will be the “quarterback” for the sales efforts of multiple Town departments including the Convention Center, Marketing and Special Events. This position will be directly accountable for increasing year-round room stays, mid-week room stays and attracting groups, sports teams and events which reflect the values of Ocean City. … this position will be responsible for the following. Develop the sales and marketing strategies for the Town and for all applicable Town departments. Directly sell to groups, events, sports leagues and teams to bring them to Ocean City. Travel to shows and other venues where Ocean City can be promoted to sports leagues and groups. Work with other levels of government and the private sector to develop an indoor and outdoor sports complex near Ocean City. Work with local, county and state tourism related organizations to strengthen tourism in and around Ocean City. Work directly with our private partners in the hospitality industry.” It's going to look different, but at least it’s happening. This mantra can be applied to a lot of things in life right now. High school seniors have every reason to regret many of the traditional things – like homecoming, prom, graduation and sports – being missed this school year, but at least in the case of most schools locally these teens are having some semblance of a senior year. In many areas around Maryland and across the country, some seniors will never see the inside of their school buildings. Seniors are being robbed of wonderful life experiences, but locally there are some opportunities for these kids. The same concept applies to Springfest. There was online backlash from social media types decrying the cancel society we seem to live in these days, referring to the news this week major live entertainment acts would not be booked and significant downgrades in food, craft and alcohol offerings were planned. It seems to be this will be the norm in 2021. Events are going to need to be modified so long as the current restrictions continue, and it would seem unlikely any major reprieves are coming before summer. Rather than rail against these changes being made to traditional events, there needs to be some modifications to expectations. Let’s celebrate the progress being made in this correction to normal but remember there’s a long way to go before normal returns. Let’s not allow perfect to get in the way of the good. I’m just happy to see these events happening again even if they are unrecognizable versions of themselves. The effort to bring a skate park to Berlin continues to gain solid momentum. More importantly there seems to be some intentions made to not let this concept fall off the town’s radar as it has in the past. Former Berlin Council candidate Tony Weeg has organized an online fundraising effort on Go Fund Me. On the page, referring to a map of the town he posted, he wrote, “As you can see from the image Berlin has many things – but it does not have a skatepark! We are raising funds for that skatepark to someday be constructed in Berlin, MD. Please help us raise money for the awesome enhancement to our already cool town, thank you!” Last month the Berlin Police Department told the town council it would be contributing $1,000 to the effort. Within 24 hours, as of 1 p.m. Thursday, the online campaign had eight donors and raised $1,250, including $500 from Councilman Jay Knerr and $250 from Weeg. Readers will remember Knerr defeated Weeg, 606-495, in last October’s election to gain the at-large seat. It’s great to see one-time opponents on the same page for the greater good.


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The Adventures Of Fatherhood By STEVE GREEN

s I often mention in this space, I read a ton of parenting articles, especially online blogs written by special needs parents. I identify with the ups and downs due to our 11-year-old son Carson. For the first time in the 12 years I’ve been writing this column, I admit to some difficulty finding a topic for today’s column. It’s mainly a result of my 12year-old son Beckett not wanting me to write about him anymore. I knew this day would come, as he has reached the age of being difficult to be around often as he flexes his independence. As I massage him a bit, as he doesn’t get to tell me what to do, and while I apologize for the cop out, I think this letter from Kimberlee Rutan McCafferty to her autistic son, courtesy of questia.com, is worthy of reprinting. It had an impact on me as Carson’s future, particularly whether he will ever be independent, is something we think about a lot. It’s been an especially raw subject of late as we work to set up a special needs trust for his adult life. My hope is it has an impact on you as well, whether you are a special needs parent or not. Dear Son, I’ve been having conversations about your future lately with various people, all of whom I truly believe have your best interests at heart. We’ve been trying on phrases like “shared living” and “group homes” and “sheltered workshops,” and I’ve been rolling them around in my mouth, trying them on for taste. None of them taste nearly as good as chocolate. You see, I’m trying to figure out our collective future, where you will live, where Daddy and I want to live … and where your brother, who is also autistic, fits into the picture too. Let’s just say it’s complicated. You see, my heart is torn, my sweet boy, because as much as you’ve ma-

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tured and grown since those difficult days 12 years ago when you were diagnosed with autism at the tender age of 17 months, some things with you have not changed. You still love being at home. You still want to leave said home for about an hour each day and do something wonderful. The only place you ever want to stay more than an hour is Great Adventure or Disney, and with the latter being a bit financially out of reach on a frequent basis that leaves us with Six Flags and the occasional Pixar movie for outings of any length. Your needs are complicated. I have friends, friends whose sons and daughters are autistic adults, who tell me there is still room for growth, that I don’t know how you’ll change and grow in the next eight years before you graduate from high school. I speak to them of the group homes their sons live in, the day care their kid calls college, the seven-day-a-week in-home care they’ve fought for and won for their child. I read books and blogs about autistic adults and their particular work and living arrangements. For many of them their transition has been fabulous. And I know in my secret heart of hearts that if I’m honest, most of these pretty choices may not be for you. You see, if I had my way, I’d live to be 121 to your 85, and we’d go to the great beyond together holding hands, you first, with me following just moments after. This dream is why your mother runs every day and limits her wine consumption (most of the time). One might ask how I know this is right for us when you can’t tell me yourself. I know this the way I knew something was seriously different about your development at 16 months even when your pediatrician didn’t seem that concerned given your father’s childhood, and told us to “wait and see.” I know this the way I knew my world was forever changed when just a month

later he shoved some articles into my hand with the word “autism” in their titles, told me to call a developmental pediatrician, and basically shoved me out the door. I also know our pediatrician was an a**hole, but that’s for another story. I know this the way I know I have to build in extra time in the morning and at night just for us to hug. I also know things will have to change. Part of me wants to keep you here with us until we can do it no longer, and I don’t say this as a martyr. Part of me wants you to live apart from us to give your father and I some breathing space, and I don’t say this as a callous mother. Part of me wants you to have some sort of job. Part of me just wants you to have a life of leisure. Part of me wants to keep you here with us and freeze time for you, keep you safe and secure. Part of me wonders who will snuggle with you and read you your bedtime story if I’m not there. … Part of me accepts that your father and I won’t be here forever and that eventually you will live apart from us, so really the only questions are when and where. … All of me wonders, time after time, how I will manage to give you a fulfilling life for 40 years from beyond the grave. Those “how” questions are a pox upon me. As I accept the fact that none of this is an easy fix, all of me knows I love you and want for you the three things I’ve wished since your conception: for you to be safe, happy, and loved. And all of me knows it’s complicated.

(The writer is the publisher and editor of The Dispatch. He and his wife, Pamela, are proud parents of two boys. This weekly column examines their transition into parenthood and all that goes along with it. E-mail any thoughts to editor@mdcoastdispatch.com.)

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February 19, 2021

Horoscopes

ARIES (March 21 to April 19): Time is on your side in the early part of the week. But anything left undone by midweek will need to be put into rush mode. The weekend offers choices for you and someone special. TAURUS (April 20 to May 20): Finally getting credit for a contribution is nice for all you idea-generating Ferdinands and Fernandas. But don't sit on your laurels under the cork tree. Use it as a first step to a bigger opportunity. GEMINI (May 21 to June 20): Despite the progress made, a hint of doubt might set in. That's OK. You need to stop and consider not only what you're doing but also how you are doing. Make adjustments where needed. CANCER (June 21 to July 22): The dreamer is dominant in the Moon Child's aspect, but a dollop of hardheaded practicality is coming up fast and jockeying for space. The challenge is to make room for both modes. LEO (July 23 to Aug. 22): It's a good week for Leos and Leonas to start assessing what they've done and what they plan to do. Moving to a new environment -- home or job-related -- is a possibility for some Cats. VIRGO (Aug. 23 to Sept. 22): The week calls for Virgos to make tough decisions, but in a way that leaves the door open for changes. Ask for advice from someone who has been in the position you're in now. LIBRA (Sept. 23 to Oct. 22): Disappointments are never easy to take, but

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you have the ability to learn from them and go on to success. Meanwhile, continue to build up your contacts. You'll need them soon. SCORPIO (Oct. 23 to Nov. 21): Things might still be going much too slowly to suit you. But you need the time to make sure they're going in the right direction. It's easier to make a course correction now rather than later. SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22 to Dec. 21): Showing some temperament at the way things are going is one way of getting your point across. Just don't overdo it, or you risk turning away more-moderate supporters. CAPRICORN (Dec. 22 to Jan. 19): Things could change more quickly this week than you like. But don't fret; you'll most likely find that you're up to the challenges. The weekend offers much-needed relaxation. AQUARIUS (Jan. 20 to Feb. 18): Big challenge coming up? Uncross those fingers and believe that you're going to do well. And keep in mind that so many people have faith in your ability to succeed. PISCES (Feb. 19 to March 20): Testing the waters is a good way of learning about an opportunity before plunging right in. Ask more questions and be alert to any attempts to avoid giving complete answers. BORN THIS WEEK: You have a gift for making people -- and animals, too -feel special and loved. © 2021 King Features Synd., Inc.

Things I Like ...

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WITH BUNK MANN

The Carousel opened in July 1962 after the original ribbon cutting had been delayed several months due to damage from the famous March Storm of 1962. At the time of its construction, it was far north of the existing city limits and stood virtually alone with only sand dunes and a few small cottages nearby. The Carousel had a reputation for luxury springing from its association with Senate aide Bobby Baker and the Washington, D.C., political crowd. The original Carousel was four stories tall. The high-rise section that exists today was built in 1974. To purchase one of Bunk Mann's books, click over to www.vanishinPhoto by A. Aubrey Bodine goc.com.

The Dispatch Crossword Puzzle

By Steve Green

Seeing kids smiling during a game Being full after splitting a dozen crabs with my wife Moving snow around with my leaf blower

A blue sky day in February An old photo album

Smell of fresh mulch Leaving a hospital

Bikes that don’t rust

Working on a rainy day

Having off on a sunny day

When karma does its thing ANSWERS ON PAGE 46


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February 19, 2021

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