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Nursing business makes move to West Ocean City

Posted On: 3/19/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 19, 2015) The Berlin Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon-cutting ceremony this month for Nurse Professionals Home Care LLC to celebrate the business’ move to West Ocean City. The company opened in February 2000 in Kent Island, then moved to Ocean City four years ago and then relocated to West Ocean City in February. According to the company’s website, Nurse Professionals Home Care provides support and services through companionship services or skilled nursing care to “improve lives and enable independent living at home.” Nurse Professionals Home Care President Anita Logsdon Battista said she started the company after seeing a need for “quality RN and allied health staffing.” “I have always been in the medical field,” she said. “I was a medical sales manager for a medical equipment company upon graduation from college [and] went back to college for a third college degree in nursing and worked as a OR/PACU RN at a large Balt...
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Bomb scare in downtown Berlin, WCB investigating

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) A bomb scare emptied parts of downtown Berlin on Friday evening after an anonymous caller told Berlin police 10 homemade explosives were set to detonate near the first block of Main Street. According to the Berlin Police Department, the call came at approximately 6 p.m., with the caller warning the bombs were set to explode in three hours. No specific locations were named, but three businesses, Rayne’s Reef, the Globe and the Atlantic Hotel, were ordered evacuated by police. One residence was also evacuated. Rayne’s Reef Owner Michael Queen said police phoned him about the threat at approximately 7 p.m. “They just called me and told me there was a threat and that they needed to evacuate the area,” he said. Queen said he handled the evacuation of the roughly 20 customers in the restaurant at the time by himself. “A lot of people were finished eating already and they were just hanging out. They were kind of like, ‘Oh, okay,&...
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Disparities plague Pines nonprofits

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) Longtime Ocean Pines resident and prolific nonprofit wrangler Anna Foultz is speaking out after a recent board of directors meeting failed answer two questions: how do you define a nonprofit, and what should they pay to use community facilities? On Saturday, Feb. 28, Vice President Marty Clarke called on the board to refund the $450 Foultz’s Star Charities paid to rent the Ocean Pines community center gym for a beef and beer fundraiser held in January. Proceeds from the event were to benefit wounded combat soldiers in the state. Foultz is a well-known fund-raiser, as Star Charities aids at least 15 other organizations and causes ranging from Alzheimer’s and the American Cancer Society to the Girl Scouts and Diakonia.   “We’re all volunteers,” Foultz said. “We live in Ocean Pines. We support everything in Ocean Pines. We do fundraisers and we’re very active in supporting all these organizations. We’re very activ...
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Berlin leadership touts dramatic electric rate drop

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) The high cost of electricity was once an economic albatross around the neck of Berlin, but the message coming out of a Berlin Mayor and Council meeting on Monday was that those days are long gone. “I consistently check electric rates and how Berlin compares to the other towns,” District 1 Councilmember Troy Purnell said. “Today, when I looked at it again, Berlin has got the cheapest per-kilowatt hour rate. “I hate hearing from so many people, ‘Oh, Berlin utility rates are too high,’ Purnell continued. “It’s just not true.” Mayor Gee Williams said that as recently as 2008, Berlin’s rates were the highest in the region, and possibly on the entire East Coast. “That’s when we began the aggressive tackling of the issue,” he said. In 2008, the town hired Raleigh, N.C. electrical engineering consulting firm Booth and Associates Inc. in an attempt to lower rates. Three years later, the mayor...
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Board minority in Pines keeps golf questions coming

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) Although the Ocean Pines Board of Directors made a definitive decision on golf management last month, some board members continue to question the motives and methods behind the 4-3 vote. “We are hiring a company that we know nothing about other than what is in their promotional catalogs,” said Director Bill Cordwell, who voted with the minority. “No research was done on their background. The search when a previous board hired Casper was exhaustive with visits to courses they were managing, references, etc. and a catalog of everything they did.” Director Tom Terry, who also voted with the minority, agreed that the 2010 process was extensive. “It involved onsite visits by a group that was vetting the various companies,” he said. “I think the dynamic of this particular [request for proposal] was slightly different, in that back then they were clearly going to find someone to take over and manage the course. In our pa...
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Worcester County institutes first hiring freeze since ‘08

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Brian Gilliland, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) During the closed session preceding its meeting last week, the Worcester County Commissioners voted to institute a hiring freeze until the end of the budget session later this spring. The county attributed the decision to “another challenging budget year due to a continued decline in projected property tax revenues,” according to a release from Public Information Officer Kim Moses. “County revenues are anticipated to dip from $178 million in the current fiscal year (FY15) to $167 million in FY16 unless significant budget stabilization funds are utilized,” Commissioner President Jim Bunting stated in the release. “The county has lost over $40 million in property tax revenues since fiscal year 2009 due to declining assessments, and property tax revenues are projected to decline by another $4 million in FY16.” The commissioners have taken this action, according to Moses, to avoid having to use all of the remaining budget stabilizat...
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Berlin makes strategic plan summary public

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) Following the four townwide meetings held to discuss the future of the town, Berlin officials on Tuesday issued a community meeting report that summarizes the response from residents. Meetings were held over several weeks in January and February and were led by facilitator Christine Becker.   “I think there were a lot of good, positive ideas and considerable commitment to the town, really wanting to make it even stronger,” Becker said. The report listed several topics of interest, followed by comments provided during the meetings compiled by Becker. Asked what actions would make Berlin a better place, most residents said, “Getting rid of the ‘Berlin wall’ that divides the town between east and west.” This included the suggestions that a walkway or bikeway be built over Route 113 to bring both sides of the community together, providing an indoor/outdoor community sports complex, creating open-space recreation for kids, an...
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Berlin Briefs

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) The Berlin mayor and council discussed several issues during a public meeting at Town Hall on Monday, March 9.   “Cool” Berlin The council approved the second annual “Cool Berlin Day” for Saturday, April 18 from 1-6 p.m. It includes road closures in the downtown area from noon to 7 p.m. The event celebrates the first anniversary of the Budget Travel magazine “Coolest Small Town” designation and will feature food vendors, music, games, contests and a parade. Economic Development Director Ivy Wells promised, “We have some surprises planned.”   Heritage Festival The council also approved the return of the Berlin Heritage Festival, slated for Saturday, April 25 from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. A rain date was set for the following day. The festival honors the incorporation of the town of Berlin in 1886 and 1887 and will include classic cars, street scenes and artisans. Costumed attendee...
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Berlin Briefs

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) The Berlin mayor and council discussed several issues during a public meeting at Town Hall on Monday, March 9.   “Cool” Berlin The council approved the second annual “Cool Berlin Day” for Saturday, April 18 from 1-6 p.m. It includes road closures in the downtown area from noon to 7 p.m. The event celebrates the first anniversary of the Budget Travel magazine “Coolest Small Town” designation and will feature food vendors, music, games, contests and a parade. Economic Development Director Ivy Wells promised, “We have some surprises planned.”   Heritage Festival The council also approved the return of the Berlin Heritage Festival, slated for Saturday, April 25 from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. A rain date was set for the following day. The festival honors the incorporation of the town of Berlin in 1886 and 1887 and will include classic cars, street scenes and artisans. Costumed attendee...
» Click here for the full story.

Renaud enjoying role as swing vote

Posted On: 3/12/15
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

(March 12, 2015) When Pat Renaud ran for Ocean Pines Association Board of Directors last year, he did so on a ticket of sorts that included former board president Dave Stevens and a shared platform of taking power back to the board and away from General Manager Bob Thompson. The pair was swept in, Stevens was again elected president and Renaud was appointed secretary. “We both had some concerns,” Renaud said. “I was concerned by the apparent takeover of the board by the general manager [and] we were trying to get the control back to the board – that’s what Dave and I talked about. We were looking to see that the general manager didn’t have more control than he should have, and I think that’s come about. I think we have accomplished that pretty much. Some people would say too much, but I don’t think so.” New policies were immediately implemented, including Renaud’s initiative that the general manager write a summary report...
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