NOTICE TO CANDIDATES FOR CITY OF HAVRE DE GRACE ELECTION HELD ON MAY 7, 2019

CITY OF HAVRE DE GRACE PUBLIC NOTICE

 

NOTICE TO CANDIDATES FOR CITY OF HAVRE DE GRACE ELECTION

HELD ON MAY 7, 2019

 

Qualified candidates running for Mayor and City Council can file a Notice of Candidacy with the Director of Administration, City Hall, 711 Pennington Avenue, Havre de Grace, Maryland from Tuesday, March 5, 2019 to Tuesday, March 19, 2019 between the hours of 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.

 

Qualifications to run for Mayor are as follows:

  • At least 25 years of age;
  • Citizen of the United States for at least ten years preceding the election;
  • A qualified City voter at the time of filing;
  • A resident of Havre de Grace for at least two years preceding the election date.

Qualifications to run for City Council are as follows:

  • At least 25 years of age;
  • Citizen of the United States for at least ten years preceding the election;
  • A qualified City voter at the time of filling;
  • A resident of Havre de Grace for at least two years preceding the election date.

 

Filing Fee:

Mayor $100.00

Council $50.00

 

Thank You.

Mayor Martin Delivers 2019 State of the City Address

Citizens of Havre de Grace and Honorable Members of the City Council,

I would first like to note that all of the successes I am about to discuss could not have been possible without the continued support and involvement of the Havre de Grace City Council. I have indeed been fortunate to have a Council that not only shares my vision of Havre de Grace as a central hub of social interaction and family development in Harford County, but also debates planned efforts in a supportive and respectful manner and contributes valuable new ideas to make us an ever greater community. They are truly partners in all our endeavors and show that government can and should work well together.

Herein is a report on the State of the City of Havre de Grace and our accomplishments from 2018 and the plans and challenges that lie ahead of us in 2019.

Havre de Grace Accomplishments

FY 2018 was a great year in the City of Havre de Grace. We completed many projects, maintained a balanced budget, and improved quality of life for our citizens.  The City received a very positive financial audit from the independent auditing firm Zelenkofske Axelrod LLC.

Construction of the long anticipated new Havre de Grace High School/Middle School began in the Spring of 2018. The citizens and elected officials worked for many years to make this a reality and it was indeed gratifying to see our vision finally become a reality.

This fiscal year to date finds all City funds operating in accordance with our budget projections. The City continues to meet its financial obligations for capital projects, employment, and debt service. We have also been able to commit funds to a variety of initiatives and projects.  

We have already spent almost $450,000 in paving projects to ensure safe, effective access throughout the City with an additional $250,000 to continue paving projects through the end of FY19. We have spent almost $100,000 in City Park Upgrades, including the new pickleball court, pavilion and additional lighting at Tydings Park; upgrades to the Bradford Green basketball court; the completion of the ADA Ramp and installation of new picnic tables, grills and pet waste stations; completion of floating piers with kayak access at Hutchins Park and Concord Point Park; and upgrades to the Moore House property (new fencing, benches and signage)   

Our efforts this year to upgrade our water and sewer systems have been substantial.  We have contracted over $2,000,000 to rehabilitate the Water Treatment Plant. With the exception of the recent roof replacement, the City water plant has not seen any major rehabilitation in nearly 25 years. I am committed to making the necessary investment in our facilities to ensure current and future generations have safe and reliable drinking water at an affordable price.

We have committed over $700,000 for water distribution and wastewater collection rehabilitation. I consider this the initial phase of a multi-year effort to replace pipes that are reaching the end of their useful life.

We have also completed over $625,000 in stormwater management remediation in the Critical Area to properly protect the Chesapeake Bay.  The Department of Public Works oversaw the Concord Point Stormwater Management and Wetland Enhancement Project. This project was a huge success, constructing a regenerative stormwater conveyance (RSC) for water quality improvements. This is a great example of a successful partnership with regulatory agencies and neighbors in the museum cultural district, which includes the Concord Point Lighthouse and Keeper’s House, the Havre de Grace Decoy Museum, and the Maritime Museum. And best of all, we now have our own beach!

The Marina maintenance dredging project is underway and will be completed this Spring. We have successfully obtained over $750,000 in State funding to complete this project. In addition, we have secured $35,000 in State grant funding to continue the pier re-decking project, which will also be completed this Spring.

In the area of Public Safety, the City of Havre de Grace has seen a consistent reduction in crime over the last 5 years with a 3% reduction in 2018, from 2017. Over the past two years, the City of Havre de Grace has been identified as one of the safest cities in the State of Maryland. And in June of 2018, SafeWise, home security experts, recognized Havre de Grace as the 4th Safest City in the Nation to raise children.

Your City government remains the only area in Harford County to staff and fund a School Resource Officer in each of its four schools.   

The Drug Take Back program (with a Drug Drop Box located at the entrance to the Police Department) continues to be a great success. Last year, our department helped take well over 1,000 lbs. of prescription medicine off the streets.

And for the first time, the Havre de Grace Police Department formed a Police Explorer Program. This program is designed to encourage teenagers and young adults to become involved with public safety concentrating on law enforcement.

The Department of Public Works has also been very busy. In 2018, DPW logged over 2,277 work orders in just our Streets, Parks, Water & Sewer Distribution Group.

The following are just a few of the service calls and duties performed over the last year:

  • 1,250 customer water specific calls by our water distribution team.
  • 108 potholes and road repairs
  • 55 water main break repairs
  • 33 sidewalks repaired / replaced
  • 37 storm drain issues resolved
  • 26 sinkhole repairs
  • Treated and plowed 47 miles of streets during 7 snow event.
  • Assisted with 55 special events around the City

In addition to calls for service, the Department of Public Works also:

  • Planted 100 trees at Seneca Avenue Park
  • Replaced approximately 2300’ of water lines at Lafayette and Alliance Streets
  • Continued with an aggressive annual upgrade and replacement plan for fire hydrants
  • Oversaw resurfacing projects at Bayview and Grace Harbour, Opera House parking lot, Community Center parking lot, Lafayette Street, Market Street, and Revolution Street (in partnership with BGE), and multiple blocks of lanes downtown
  • Expanded Winter Wonderland Christmas decorations to include David Craig Park and Hutchins Park
  • Poured concrete pad and installed Gold Star Memorial at Concord Point Park
  • Collected 2,038 bulk items from residential addresses

DPW’s other environmental partnerships include:

  • The Victory Garden created by the Havre de Grace Green Team
  • The pollinator garden, signage and rain barrel with the Harford County Watershed Stewards
  • Stream and trash clean-up by the dedicated volunteers with Citizens Against Trash (C.A.T.)

The Planning Department is proud to report that we improved our CRS Rating from Class 8 to Class 7, which will help our citizens save on flood insurance rates.

The Havre de Grace Tourism Department was also very busy this past year, planning and supporting multiple events for citizens and visitors to our City. Highlights include: our monthly First Friday events, an expanded Farmers Market, the annual Independence Day Celebration, Havre de Grace Food Truck Festival, Oktoberfest, Havre de Grace Oyster Feast, Holly Jolly First Friday and Holiday Parade and Mardi Gras Parade.

The Havre de Grace Arts Collective responsible for managing the Cultural Center at the Opera House has realized great success and has received over 20,000 attendees during its first 18 months of operation.  

Many of these events in our City have led to an economic stimulus for our local businesses. Our Department of Economic Development is pleased to report that we have a near “zero vacancy rate” in our downtown business district for the first time in recent history.

Administratively, we’ve worked tirelessly to retain a skilled and dedicated workforce, while at the same time, analyzing ways to improve efficiencies in our workforce. To this end, we have:

  • Conducted a comprehensive restructuring of our Employee Wages and Benefit Programs; enhanced healthcare insurance coverage options, all of which has saved taxpayers thousands of dollars   
  • Reduced 12 positions City-wide since 2015, identifying opportunities for streamlining operational efficiencies and job sharing

Havre de Grace City Council legislative actions include:

  • Formal recognition of the City’s Historic District
  • Establishment of John O’Neill Day (our first municipal holiday)
  • Creation of the Havre de Grace Youth Commission
  • Passage of the Disabled Veterans Tax Credit
  • Increased in-kind and financial support of our volunteer organizations

As you can see, everyone in the City of Havre de Grace Government has been extremely busy over the past year. Our goal is to make our City, not only a destination for visitors by adding tourism events to an already robust events schedule, but to attract new residents to relocate here, by continuing to make significant investments in our community and our infrastructure.

Outlook for 2019

While we know that we have successfully addressed many of the challenges of the past, we also know that there will be more challenges that lie ahead of us. Please know that your government and this administration are prepared to meet those challenges. Together, there is nothing we cannot accomplish. I truly believe that the next decade will be the most important decade in the history of our City. The accomplishments and investments we make today will prepare us to meet the future.

To aid in Economic Development, I have budgeted $75,000 for a downtown trolley system. The Council and I are working with the State Legislature to allow an electric trolley system limited access to downtown roadways. My vision is for a thoroughly enjoyable addition to the downtown experience and a way to improve access for our visitors.

I have contracted almost $230,000 to construct an elevated walkway at the Joe K. Trail, completing the next phase of this long-term project and enhancing the area around the trail.

We have entered into an MOU with MDTA, whereby they will be funding over a half million dollar restoration and improvements to Lilly Run.

We will begin to design and implement plans for the development of the Water Street coastline for public use.

I am also looking to complete agreements with both Aberdeen and Harford County to provide water to their residents and businesses. If successful, this effort would provide additional funding for planned infrastructure replacement, without causing undue pressure to raise the cost of service to our residents.

The Planning Department, along with the Economic Development Advisory Board, will continue the work it has already started on refining and updating the MOE (Mixed Office Employment) district to provide a functional and aesthetically pleasing new gateway to our City.

The Planning Department will also continue working on a zone district overlay, redevelopment area or some combination of methods to provide a path to the best result for our community in the redevelopment of the Harford Memorial Hospital site.

We will continue to assist the County in construction of the new High School/Middle School, with a projected opening of Fall 2020.

The 2019 outlook is strong for the Havre de Grace Police Department. This department will be the first law enforcement agency in Harford County to have an Explorer Program, Cadet Program, and an Auxiliary Police Program, encouraging more citizens to be involved in public safety service, with a possible future career in law enforcement. The Police Department also hopes to install solar traffic systems to replace battery operated systems, expand and improve the Youth Summer Safety Camps, and increase the number of free home and business security surveys we offer, all while still patrolling the streets and keeping Havre de Grace a safe place to live and work.

In addition to our excellent Police Department, Havre de Grace is also home to the Susquehanna Hose Company and Havre de Grace Ambulance Corps, two first class volunteer organizations. This administration will continue to provide the financial and in-kind support needed for these organizations to continue their service to the citizens of Havre de Grace.

We will also continue to work with our elected state officials to find solutions to the Route 40 / Otsego Street / Ohio Street intersection. The State of Maryland has recognized the traffic congestion in this area, and placed this intersection on a priority improvement list in 2018. We are still awaiting a timeframe for project design and improvement implementation from State Highway Administration.

In Tourism, in addition to our list of already established events, there are some new events to look forward to in 2019. Many of these events provide economic stimulus to our downtown businesses and non-profit organizations. New events this year include:

  • John O’Neill Day Celebration – May 4-5, 2019
  • Jazz and Blues Fest – June 7-9, 2019
  • Waterfront Festival – August 2019

We also look forward to the creation of a new City website, to debut in March 2019. This website will increase our City’s visibility, as well as enhance services to citizens and prospective businesses.

 

Challenges Ahead

Enterprise Fund (FUND 9) – The Water Sewer Report tonight spoke to the increasing financial demand to address the aging distribution and collection system that has not been fully addressed for generations, as well as meeting the debt service incurred from mandated improvements at the WasteWater Treatment Plant. The debt service coupled with the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) financial demands will prove to be very challenging in the next budget year.  This is demonstrated by the CIP requirements over the next 10 years. This administration is fully dedicated to addressing this issue, not just for today, but moving towards the future. This will require finding creative ways to generate revenue, which should not solely be a burden funded by our citizens.

Triennial tax assessments have recently projected almost no increase in tax revenue for our City. This becomes a challenge for 2019 with rising healthcare costs for City employees. We must find ways to balance our wages and benefits to continue to make the City attractive in its recruitment and retention of skilled employees, while also addressing these rising costs of doing business.

Finally, our greatest challenge is and always will be to continue providing quality services to our citizens, within the confines of our revenues and available resources. But we will do as we have always done. This is what makes Havre de Grace great. Our ability to face challenges as a community and to celebrate our successes with one another. In 2019, I know our successes will outnumber our challenges. I look forward to all this year has to offer our City and our citizens.

The State of our City is strong.

Thank you.

William T. Martin

Mayor

City of Havre de Grace

 

Mayor Martin signs Executive Order 2019-1 providing eligible citizens employed by the federal government one-month waiver from late fees and penalties.

January 28, 2019 Mayor Martin signed Executive Order 2019-1 providing federal employees residing in the City of Havre de Grace who were recently furloughed during the U.S. Government shutdown a one-month waiver from late fees and penalties of City water and sewer bills and payment of City real property taxes.

“It’s my intention this executive order helps ease the financial burden many of our citizens are currently experiencing because of the recent shutdown,” said Mayor William T. Martin.  “I encourage everyone eligible for the initiative to call City Hall at (410) 939-1800.”

 

Read  Executive Order 2019-1

STATEMENT FROM MAYOR WILLIAM T. MARTIN REGARDING THE PASSING OF K-9 OFFICER BENY

STATEMENT FROM MAYOR WILLIAM T. MARTIN REGARDING THE PASSING OF K-9 OFFICER BENY

“It’s with great sadness we learn of the loss of K-9 Officer Beny. Officer Beny was a valuable member of our law enforcement community and a loyal servant to the citizens of Havre de Grace. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Havre de Grace Police Department and Officer Beny’s partner Cpl. Daniels. k-9 Beny was responsible for many arrests and for helping to place many criminals behind bars. Because k-9 Beny was active duty at the time of his passing, I have ordered the City flags to half staff in honor of his service as well as the City lights to be changed to blue.

Thank you for your service Beny. And thank you Cpl. Brian Daniels.”

Information Regarding Ordinance 1012

View Ordinance #1012 

Ordinance #1012 “Small Wireless Facility and Support Structure” was introduced at the Havre de Grace City Council meeting on Monday, January 7, 2019. This is a very time sensitive piece of legislation, whereby the Mayor and City and City Council will have to take measures outside of the normal parameters and timetable of conducting City business from the dais.

 

While these measures meet the legal requirements set forth in the City Charter, the Mayor and City Council will entertain comments from citizens this Thursday, January 10th at 6pm in the Havre de Grace Council Chambers. Following the Public Hearing, the Mayor and City Council will conduct a Special Council Meeting to entertain those comments, and then move for a Second Reading and Adoption of Ordinance 1012, which will be implemented upon adoption.

 

Over the past year, the Administration with guidance from the City Attorney and Director of Planning, have analyzed the best method in which the City can handle requests for placement of small cell facilities on City Rights of Way. The City prepared draft legislation several months ago, but withheld its introduction waiting for the conclusion of the citizen comment process for impending regulations at the State and Federal levels.

 

The Maryland Municipal League (MML), has been working on behalf of municipalities to oppose any State regulations that would usurp the right of local communities to determine their own standards. Unfortunately, the State agency recently issued an order making the regulations effective January 14, 2019, with certain mandated requirements effective as of that date, and providing that aesthetic standards be adopted by April 15, 2019.

 

What does this mean for the City of Havre de Grace?

Without local legislation passed prior to January 14, 2019, the City will be unable to regulate any small cell facilities on an ad hoc basis. Going forward, the State and Federal regulations will limit municipal action and review regarding deployment and installation of small cell facilities. The general effect of the State order is to prevent local governments (counties and municipalities) from taking actions through local legislation or approval processes that “materially limits or inhibits the ability of any competitor or potential competitor to compete in a fair and balanced legal and regulatory environment.”

 

First Step:

On January 14th the “shot clock” and “fee restrictions” standards take effect. Therefore the City will adjust the fee schedule in the City Code in order to be able to collect fees for small cell facility applications within the standards permitted under the State regulations.

Prior to April 15th the City must adopt “aesthetic standards” under the current  State agency order. These aesthetic standards will include what the ““Small Wireless Facilities and Supports Structures” will look like, which is especially important throughout our historic city.

Without this legislation, the City will not have any input as to where these “Small Wireless Facilities and Supports Structures” can be located within a City ROW or the aesthetics within the area.

January 10, 2019 City Council meeting Agenda

 

Below you will find an interactive version of the agenda the City Council will use at the Thursday, January 10, 2019  City Council Meeting.

Draft items and items that have received prior council action can be viewed through this interactive agenda.

 

——–

Ordinance #1012 “Small Wireless Facility and Support Structure” was introduced at the Havre de Grace City Council meeting on Monday, January 7, 2019. This is a very time sensitive piece of legislation, whereby the Mayor and City and City Council will have to take measures outside of the normal parameters and timetable of conducting City business from the dais.

 

While these measures meet the legal requirements set forth in the City Charter, the Mayor and City Council will entertain comments from citizens this Thursday, January 10th at 6pm in the Havre de Grace Council Chambers. Following the Public Hearing, the Mayor and City Council will conduct a Special Council Meeting to entertain those comments, and then move for a Second Reading and Adoption of Ordinance 1012, which will be implemented upon adoption.

 

Over the past year, the Administration with guidance from the City Attorney and Director of Planning, have analyzed the best method in which the City can handle requests for placement of small cell facilities on City Rights of Way. The City prepared draft legislation several months ago, but withheld its introduction waiting for the conclusion of the citizen comment process for impending regulations at the State and Federal levels.

 

The Maryland Municipal League (MML), has been working on behalf of municipalities to oppose any State regulations that would usurp the right of local communities to determine their own standards. Unfortunately, the State agency recently issued an order making the regulations effective January 14, 2019, with certain mandated requirements effective as of that date, and providing that aesthetic standards be adopted by April 15, 2019.

 

What does this mean for the City of Havre de Grace?

Without local legislation passed prior to January 14, 2019, the City will be unable to regulate any small cell facilities on an ad hoc basis. Going forward, the State and Federal regulations will limit municipal action and review regarding deployment and installation of small cell facilities. The general effect of the State order is to prevent local governments (counties and municipalities) from taking actions through local legislation or approval processes that “materially limits or inhibits the ability of any competitor or potential competitor to compete in a fair and balanced legal and regulatory environment.”

 

First Step:

On January 14th the “shot clock” and “fee restrictions” standards take effect. Therefore the City will adjust the fee schedule in the City Code in order to be able to collect fees for small cell facility applications within the standards permitted under the State regulations.

Prior to April 15th the City must adopt “aesthetic standards” under the current  State agency order. These aesthetic standards will include what the ““Small Wireless Facilities and Supports Structures” will look like, which is especially important throughout our historic city.

Without this legislation, the City will not have any input as to where these “Small Wireless Facilities and Supports Structures” can be located within a City ROW or the aesthetics within the area.

                      Public Hearing and Special Council Meeting                      

               January 10, 2019

             6:00 p.m.

 

Ordinance 1012; An Ordinance Concerning Small Cell Facilities

AN ORDINANCE OF THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF HAVRE DE GRACE PURSUANT TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT ARTICLE OF THE MARYLAND ANNOTATED CODE SECTION 5-202 AND CITY CHARTER SECTIONS 33 AND 34 AMENDING THE CITY CODE BY CREATING A NEW CHAPTER 145 REGULATING THE USE OF THE CITY’S RIGHTS OF WAY AND PUBLIC WAYS, INSTALLATION OF FACILITIES, AND DEFINING “SMALL WIRELESS FACILITY” AND “SUPPORT STRUCTURE”

 

 

 

  1. Call to Order

 

  1. Roll Call

 

  1. Pledge of Allegiance

 

  1. Comments from Citizens on agenda item

 

  1. Second Reading and Adoption of Ordinance 1012:  (Council President Glenn)                     

AN ORDINANCE OF THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF HAVRE DE GRACE PURSUANT TO THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT ARTICLE OF THE MARYLAND ANNOTATED CODE SECTION 5-202 AND CITY CHARTER SECTIONS 33 AND 34 AMENDING THE CITY CODE BY CREATING A NEW CHAPTER 145 REGULATING THE USE OF THE CITY’S RIGHTS OF WAY AND PUBLIC WAYS, INSTALLATION OF FACILITIES, AND DEFINING “SMALL WIRELESS FACILITY” AND “SUPPORT STRUCTURE”

 

 

September 15, 2018 Road Closures and Parking Restrictions

Attention this is an important message from the City of Havre de Grace. Due to several  large events taking place in our city this weekend, we are anticipating a higher than normal amount of vehicular and pedestrian traffic participating in the Running Festival and the Community Yard Sale on Saturday, September 15th.

 

The City will be hosting The Susquehanna River Running Festival Half Marathon and 5K Race which will start at Tydings Park at 8AM  

 

  • Cars are not allowed to be parked between 5 A.M and noon on the streets with no parking signs

  • Closed streets will last through the duration of the race which is expected to clear by noon

 

 

Prior to the beginning of the race at 6 a.m. you can expect the following road closures.

 

  • Union Avenue from Commerce St to Otsego St

 

  • MD-155 East Bound will be reduced to one lane as you enter Havre de Grace.
  • Superior St will be closed between Ohio St and Juniata St. All traffic must use Ohio St to US-40 / Otsego St.
  • Juniata St will be closed between Superior St and Otsego St
  • Commerce St will be closed between S Stokes St and Market St
  • US-40 East Bound will be reduced to one lane from Lewis Lane to  MD-222 (Perryville Rd/Aiken Ave), including the Hatem Bridge
  • US-40 East Bound will be shifted into the US-40 West Bound lanes from Otsego St to MD-222 (Perryville Rd/Aiken Ave)
  • St John St will be closed.
  • Market St will be closed between St. John St and Commerce St
  • Girard St will be closed between Market St and Concord St
  • Concord St will be closed between Girard St and Lewis Ln
  • Lewis Lane will be closed between Concord St and Market St

The race is expected to finish at 12 p.m.

On Sunday, September 16 The International Havre de Grace Food Truck Festival start at 12 p.m at Hutchins Park.  

You can expect a large amount of traffic in this area during this event.   

 

 

  • Please monitor Havre de Grace Police Social Media for updates on the day of race.
  • For questions, please call the HDG Police Department at 410-939-2121

 

 

September 12, 2018 Update Regarding Hurricane Florence:

September 12, 2018 Update Regarding Hurricane Florence:

The latest weather reports indicate Hurricane Florence is likely to make landfall later this week along the U.S. Southeast Coast. As the storm moves closer, the City will closely monitor, prepare and coordinate, with local and county emergency services as necessary.  We are anticipating higher-than normal waters along the waterfront and low-lying areas over the course of the next several days.

 

As of right now: 

  • Conowingo Dam: 13 gates open; Expectation is that an additional 4 may be opened within the next 8 hours.
  • Dock Street Dam(Harrisburg, Pa):  Appears to be peaking this morning; and Marietta Dam this evening.
  • Winds are slight (7 mph) and from the North West (which will help)
  • Based on the current path of the storm, we are expecting a minimum impact.

 

Weekend Events:

  • Carnival on The Chesapeake: Ride operator decided to withdraw on Tuesday, September 11, 2018- a rain date will be announced.
  • Susquehanna River Running Festival: Promoters and Harford County EOC will continue to hold daily briefings to evaluate conditions and make a determination as to the race itself.
  • Farmers MarketYard Sale and the International Food Truck Festival will occur as scheduled.

Important Phone Numbers/links:

  • Police (Emergency):911
  • Police (Non-Emergency): 410-939-2121
  • Conowingo Dam Spill Hotline: 877-457-2525
  • Sign up to receive emergency alerts from the City of Havre de Grace: https://harfordcounty.bbcportal.com/