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Berlin, MD 21811
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Directors to replace Renaud, Friday

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Josh Davis, Associate Editor

(Sept. 8, 2016) The Ocean Pines Association announced this week that a special meeting will be held this Friday to replace departing Ocean Pines Associations Director Pat Renaud, who resigned on Aug. 29, citing both political frustration and health issues. According to Ocean Pines bylaws, vacancies on the board of directors “shall be filled by a majority vote of the remaining Directors within thirty (30) days” and will serve until the next annual meeting, in August. Renaud said last week the termination of Bob Thompson’s general manager contract was one of the main reasons for his resignation. “Another reason is that I have had some health problems that I have to take care of,” he said. “I’ve had enough … I don’t think there’s anything I could accomplish in this year if I stayed on, except to be more frustrated.” On Friday morning, the Gazette attempted to contact the six other members of the board by email, asking...
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Candidates set for Berlin mayor, council election

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Josh Davis, Associate Editor

(Sept. 8, 2016) Berlin voters will have two choices each for mayor and District 2 councilmember when the polls open on Oct. 4. The Sept. 2 filing deadline passed with five people filling out the paperwork to run in this year’s election. Incumbent Councilman Elroy Brittingham filed on Friday for District 3 and will not appear on the ballot because he is running unopposed. Incumbent Mayor Gee Williams also recently filed to run for a third consecutive term as the mayor. He will be opposed by current District 2 Councilwoman Lisa Hall, who gave up her seat to run for mayor. Her seat will either be filled by 34-year-old Jack Orris, an office manager at a construction company in Delaware who holds a degree in political science, or 26-year-old former firefighter Zackery Tyndall, who recently earned a degree in management and finance from Salisbury University. Neither has run for office in Berlin before. The municipal election will run from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 4. ...
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SU bring biz counseling to Snow Hill

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Brian Gilliland, Associate Editor

SU bring biz counseling to Snow Hill (Sept. 8, 2016) As entrepreneurial interest in Snow Hill and Pocomoke City grows, those thinking about opening or expanding a business should know that they don’t have to reinvent the wheel or go it totally alone unless they choose to. “The main focus is on one-on-one, no-cost counseling from the pre-start phase, which includes things like feasibility, business planning or financial proposals, to directing people to one or more other sources,” John Hickman, regional director of the small business development center at Salisbury University’s Perdue School of Business, said. Hickman said one of his counselors, Tim Sherman, is working out of the county economic development office on Market Street about once every two weeks, or by appointment. The SBDC is administered nationally, with state offices generally operating out of institutes of higher learning, Hickman said. “Our goal is to assist businesses as they start to grow, create jobs and accumulate ...
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Curfew, firehouse confounds city council, Crofoot

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Brian Gilliland, Associate Editor

(Sept. 8, 2016) Balancing restless youth, community concern and aging infrastructure with the public good, break-even finances and civic responsibility led to a standoff between City Manager/City Attorney Ernie Crofoot and the Pocomoke City Council Tuesday night. While tempers remained subdued during a sprawling conversation that included curfews, youth groups, citizen advocacy and referenced the old fire station, an under-the-surface frustration was shared by all members of the board. It began with Mayor Bruce Morrison suggesting, and the council approving, a public hearing on the proposed curfew for Pocomoke’s youth at the next regular council meeting on Sept. 19. The idea of a curfew was suggested by neighborhood residents following a large altercation between what has been described as a large, unruly crowd of young people and multiple police agencies in late July, resulting in two arrests. “There are several different opinions on this. It needs a lot of research ...
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Offshore wind could lower congestion costs across co.

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Brian Gilliland, Associate Editor

(Sept. 8, 2016) With the only power plant in the county servicing the citizens of Berlin, and only part time at that, transmitting the necessary electric to customers on the lower shore can get costly, but quantifying exactly how much could be saved is not likely to be a line item on anyone’s bill anytime soon. These costs are already rolled into the kilowatt-hour charges customers see delineated on electric bills. Paul Rich of U.S. Wind, the company in the process of installing an offshore wind farm near Ocean City, described these costs as a “hidden tax” on lower shore residents. He estimated the costs at $4.25 per bill per individual customer on the lower shore. Larger customers, like hospitals, pay a great deal more, Rich said.    “The congestion fees were derived from the Maryland Energy Administration and testimony by PJM before the Public Service Commission, not by me or U.S. Wind,” he said. PJM Interconnection oversees the wholesal...
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Brittingham to continue on Berlin council

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Josh Davis, Associate Editor

Brittingham to continue on Berlin council (Sept. 8, 2016) District 3 Berlin Councilman Elroy Brittingham will continue serving on the Town Council for at least another four years. Brittingham, 68, filed to run again on the final day of eligibility, Sept. 2, and was the only person to file for that seat. He also ran unopposed in 2012. A graduate of Worcester High School, Brittingham studied at Delaware Tech and the Taylor School of Business in Philadelphia. He served in the U.S. Army during Vietnam, including a tour in Germany, and is an active member of the Duncan-Showell American Legion Post 231 in Berlin. He is a member of the St. Paul United Methodist Church, where he has served on several committees, including finance. For years, Brittingham helped run the former Style Guide clothing store on North Main Street in Berlin, which later became part of Town Center Antiques. He joined the council in 1996, and is currently the vice president of the council and longest-serving active member. Brittingham is married to T...
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Parade of Brothers Memorial Ride on OC  Boardwalk, Sun.

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Kara Hallissey, Staff Writer

(Sept. 8, 2016) The local Red Knights Motorcycle Club, Maryland Chapter 3, will host its 12th annual 9/11 Parade of Brothers Memorial Ride on Sunday in honor of Americans who lost their lives during the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States. “This event is to never forget one of the worst tragedies that this country has ever experienced, and we need to remember this event for the rest of time,” local Red Knights treasurer and Senior Road Captain John Tartufo, who helps organize the ride, said. “This is a special day for first responders. We all take this very personally. Many brothers and sisters lost their lives on that tragic day. This is a day to pray for their souls, as they are all heroes.” Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. on the Boardwalk at 27th Street. Riders will leave promptly at 11:30 a.m. with the patriotic procession, starting at 27th Street and continuing south to North Division Street on the Boardwalk. Last year approximately 200 riders ...
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Purcell still hoping to serve final year on Pines committee

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Josh Davis, Associate Editor

(Sept. 8, 2016) Les Purcell has been an active member of the Ocean Pines Community for about 15 years. He is former member of the community association’s board of directors and is the current chairman of the clubs advisory committee, a volunteer group that counsels the board about matters related to the yacht club, beach club and country club. Recently, during an email exchange, he was informed that the new board liaison to the committee, Slobodan Trendic, would not endorse his application to continue serving for a final year. According to Purcell, without that endorsement he can no longer serve on the committee. “I wouldn’t say that’s usual, and it’s certainly not my preferred way of doing things,” Purcell said during a phone interview Friday. “I can only guess – it just seems to me that there’s a certain group [on the board] who have gotten together to do this, and they’re doing it. There’s not much anybody else ...
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Town highlighted for offering ‘nothing but peace and quiet’

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Brian Gilliland, Associate Editor

(Sept. 8, 2016) While Ocean City and Berlin might earn recognition for style and substance on occasion, Snow Hill got itself a mention on a top 10 list featured on www.onlyinyourstate.com as one of most peaceful small towns in Maryland. The county seat ranks eighth on the list that also includes Centreville, Tilghman Island, Rock Hall and Leonardtown. Each town only has a sentence or two describing it in the list, to wit: “This town has a total area of just over three miles and is surrounded by rural farmland. However, it’s also an easy drive to Ocean City and other eastern shore attractions.” Author Jamie Alvarenga, who has posted dozens of articles on the site, many featuring small towns or unexplored regions of the state, offered context to her selection of Snow Hill, beginning with how she found the town. “I’m fascinated not only with small Maryland towns, but especially ones in the Eastern Shore area. When most people think of the Eastern Shore...
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Williams, Brittingham get certified by elections board

Posted On: 9/8/16
Written By: Josh Davis, Associate Editor

(Sept. 8, 2016) Making it official, Berlin’s Board of Supervisors of Elections met on Tuesday to certify the last two candidates for office to file paperwork by the Sept. 2 deadline. Those candidates were incumbents Mayor Gee Williams and District 3 Councilman Elroy Brittingham. During the meeting at Town Hall, the board also certified that each had filed financial disclosures, which staff liaison Mary Bohlen said was done in April. Bohlen said ads would run in local papers during the next few weeks advertising the election on Tuesday, Oct. 4. The polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Bohlen said anyone in line by 7 p.m. would be allowed to vote. Police are generally present to monitor that, she added.   Absentee voting applications are available now and will be accepted by mail until Sept. 27, or in person at Town Hall on 10 Williams Street, by Sept. 30. The write-in candidate deadline is Sept. 27. Bohlen said those candidates would not appear on the physic...
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