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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette

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Editorial

Fill out census forms, get your money back

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The importance of the decennial headcount conducted by the Census Bureau can’t be overestimated, considering that each uncounted person is worth, theoretically, $18,000 per decade ($1,800 per year) in state and federal grants. That would mean, using rate of participation data provided by the Census Bureau to the Maryland Department of Planning, that Worcester County… Read more »

Berlin walks fine edge on short-term rentals

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Short-term rentals have become a long-term headache for elected officials across the country, as they weigh the interests of their constituents in residential neighborhoods and the property rights of vacation rental investors. The absence of irrefutable arguments on either side of the debate has resulted a situation so complex that no one has produced a… Read more »

It’s budget time, so please pay attention

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It’s budget time for all the local governing authorities, so it will be all about the money from now until spring. That’s when council members, county commissioners and members of the board of directors will declare their financial plans are as good as they’re going to get. They’re never even close to perfect, because taxpayers… Read more »

Williams mentions idea of Wor. tax differential

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Maybe it was an offhand remark or a subtle political jab, but Berlin Mayor Gee Williams’ comment this week about seeking a county tax differential for the town was one of the waning year’s most surprising endings. For county residents who haven’t been following Ocean City’s decades-long pursuit of a better tax deal with Worces-… Read more »

Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays

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Happy Holidays instead of Merry Christmas? Is this country going to hell in a secular handcart? No, and it’s because the annual “war on Christmas” argument is humbug. For a real war on Christmas, go to 1789, when the French Revo- lutionary government banned it as a religious celebration. Coinci- dentally, or not, our nation’s… Read more »

Viola extension brings about little discussion

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The absence of discussion before the Ocean Pines Association Board of Directors’ voted last week to extend General Manager John Viola’s contract was a powerful endorsement of his performance over the last six months. Although it is a given that the GM and the board did talk privately about the terms of his two-and-a-half-year contract… Read more »

Berlin audit shows warts-and-all books

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When auditors issue an “unmodified opinion,” as PKS & Company did after its analysis of Berlin’s books for the last fiscal year, it is not an indicator of financial seaworthiness. All it means is that the financial statements the auditors examined were clean and accurate, and matched the firm’s own findings. In short, the auditors… Read more »

Worcester’s greatest quality … generosity

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Picking just one thing for which northern Worcester County residents should be thankful would result in a selection from among the usual suspects: the lifestyle, the beach, ocean, the proximity to major cities, good schools, and other attributes that often overshadow the one big thing that makes this area what it is: the incredible generosity… Read more »

Berlin begins to weigh in on online commerce

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Airbnb, Vrbo, Uber, Lyft and about two dozen other internet-based sharing businesses have spread so quickly through the digital universe that small towns, big cities and even states have yet to figure out how to react to industries that have no physical presence. They enter local economies, take what they can, exact a toll on… Read more »

Pines leaders seeking Coastal Bays support

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It doesn’t happen as often as it should, but now and then there occurs a partnership that makes perfect sense. That would be the union — or possible union — of the Ocean Pines Association and the Coastal Bays Program. Although the two entities have worked together on numerous occasions, one of the most recent… Read more »