Water Treatment Plant – Referendum Question A

Question and Answer Sheet

1. Is this to repair aging infrastructure?
Yes. The last major water treatment plant renovation was in the early 1980’s.

2. Is the city going to stop looking for grants & sponsors if the referendum passes?
No. The City always seeks grants for the improvements to the facility and infrastructure.

3. Will this money be used to expand the City limits and build more houses?
No. The renovations and plant enhancements will enable to produce more water to sell to customers outside of our City limits thereby increasing our productivity which will lower our overall production expenses.

4. Is this to supply water for a new hospital?
No. The City can currently meet the water needs for the proposed hospital without
Increasing water production.

The last major Water Treatment Plant renovation was is the early 1980’s. Recent investments made toward repair and maintenance of the facility have not kept up with the declining performance of the equipment and the facility at large.
Repairs and replacement of critical components are needed and will be made regardless of the passing of Question A. The term of the loan will be fifteen years at an interest rate not to exceed 3 percent.
An increase in water production and sales will more than offset the loan expenses necessary for the repairs and replacement of equipment as well as the upgrades for increase production capacity.

Q&A: Opera House – Referendum Question B

1. Will my taxes go up if Referendum B passes?
No. No tax increases are proposed at all and a loan costs less than the $250,000 per year lowering carrying costs to the City.

2. Is the city going into the theater business?
No. The City will request proposals from management companies to operate the Cultural Arts Center with proceeds from successful operations carrying salaries and operating expenses.

3. Will it just be opera? I don’t even like opera…
No. Theatre, dance recitals, lectures, roots music, movies – the world of the arts and humanities is open to performances in the Cultural Arts Center.

4. Will it be done by 2018 with the referendum passing?

5. Will it be done by 2018 if the referendum doesn’t pass?
No. Operating on a lean fiscally conservative budget the City cannot cut programs deep enough to acquire the full amount needed to complete construction from existing funds.

6. Will community groups, dance classes and musicians uses the Cultural Arts Center at the Opera House?

7. Is the city going to stop looking for grants & sponsors if the referendum passes?
The City always seeks grants and sponsorships and works extensively with numerous community partners and collaborations to seek such opportunities.

8. Will the Opera House Foundation dissolve if the referendum passes?
The Opera House Foundation is the City’s greatest and strongest ally in ensuring a vibrant cultural arts center for the citizens of Havre de Grace through preservation and renovation of the historic Opera House is supported and completed. This in no way will change.

9. Will the City use new money raised and grants to pay down the loan?
Over the past two years $1.8 million has been raised through fundraisers and grant funds sought by the City of Havre de Grace. This is almost half of the cost of the project.
The City of Havre de Grace Mayor and City Council signed a Resolution to support cultural arts and an Arts and Entertainment District in the City in 2010 – this is the first major initiative in support of that resolution.
Restoration and renovation for accessibility to all is more fiscally and socially responsible than continued patch and repair to a non-compliant building that did not meet code and could not, therefore, generate revenue.

Bulle Rock to host Top 100 Golf Magazine teacher this summer

Learn from one of the country’s most passionate and dedicated golf instructors when Tom Patri comes to Bulle Rock Golf Course this summer. Patri has been teaching and coaching for over 30 years and has given more than 50,000 lesson hours. He has been recognized as: Met (NY) PGA Teacher of the Year; South Florida PGA Teacher of the Year; two time SW Florida PGA Teacher of the Year; and GOLF Magazine’s Top 100 Teacher in America, Lifetime Alumni.

Tom Patri has worked with some of the very best layers on the planet but still enjoys taking the recreational player to places he or she has never been. He works with all skill levels, gender and ages and has coached club champions, state champions, national champions and major professional champions. “I still love teaching the brand new player,” Patri says. “I love molding the absolute beginning, there is nothing better than watching a person grow to love this great game!”

Patri will spend one week a month June through September at Bulle Rock Golf Course, as follows: June 13 to 19; July 19 to 24; August 8 to 14; September 19 to 25 and TBD in October. Contact him directly at tpatri@mindspring.com to schedule a time with him at Bulle Rock.

Havre de Grace named One of Maryland’s Safety Cities in 2016


HAVRE de GRACE – Maryland is home to just over six million residents and is one of the smallest but most densely populated states in America. The largest city is Baltimore and the capital is Annapolis. Between the two is Havre de Grace, which Backgroundchecks.com has named to their Top Five List of The Safest Cities in Maryland 2016, with Harford County’s City on Chesapeake Bay at #2, behind Ocean Pines in Worcester County.

The listing declared that Havre de Grace with 12,900 residents on the head of the Chesapeake Bay and the Susquehanna River is home to Concord Point Lighthouse and the Havre de Grace Historic District home to a healthy variety of businesses, restaurants and museum. The violent crime rate is 235.5 and residents of Havre de Grace have a 2.7% chance of being involved in a property crime.

The list was compiled based on FBI violent crime statistics and proprietary BackgroundChecks.org research data.

PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT: Off-Site City Council Meeting

Per Resolution No. 2016-03, The Mayor and City Council of Havre de Grace agreed to move the regularly scheduled meeting of the Mayor and City Council, that is to be held on April 18, 2016, out of the City Hall Council Chamber to the Bulle Rock Residence Club, 1200 Bulle Rock Parkway, Havre de Grace, MD.  The meeting will begin that evening at 7:00 PM.

View Meeting Location On Map

At the same meeting, there will be two public hearings held beginning at 7 PM.  The purpose of the first Hearing will be to receive public comment on the proposed Ordinance 978 which concerns the issuance of City bonds to fund improvements to the City Water Plant.

View Exhibit A 

The second Hearing will be held to receive public comment on the proposed Ordinance 979 which concerns the issuance of City bonds to fund the completion of the renovations to the City building known as the Opera House, located at 121 N. Union Avenue


View Exhibit A 

Cultural Arts Center at the Opera House

John F. Kennedy once stated; “If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his vision wherever it takes him.”

In 2010, the Mayor and Council passed a Resolution to provide funds for capital improvements to the Old City Hall also known as the Opera House. Since that time more than 1.8 million dollars has been raised for that endeavor. The City along with the Opera House Foundation continues on this quest to secure funding to complete the Opera House and allow it operate as a cultural arts center not only for the citizens of Havre de Grace but also of Harford County and beyond.

The Mayor and City Council agree that to bring the Cultural Arts Center into fruition sooner than later is vital to the revitalization of our City and both economically as well as for the improvement of the quality of life for each of us. We should proactively focus our attention and interests on downtown NOW as we face the certainty of change related to our largest business – UMUCH by 2020. We must pursue the creation of anchor properties by proactively utilizing municipal properties for those anchors as opposed to waiting in hope that privately owned properties will come into our City. We must take the lead if we have a chance to retain a vibrant downtown City.

Every 6-8 month period that passes until completion of the Opera House causes our renovation costs to rise exponentially by 5 to 8%. We are proposing acquiring a loan in the amount of 2.1 million dollars to reach our goal which could be obtainable in less than 12 months. Or we can continue the path of funding that we are on and we may not realize a completed project for five or more years. Construction costs increases every year and every year that we do not complete this project causes the overall costs to complete the project to increase. The carrying costs, or interest for this loan would be $199,300 per year for fifteen years. Currently the City contributes $250,000 per year towards this endeavor and is committed to do so until completed. In addition the City solicits and has received support from the State and will continue to do so even after a loan is secured so as to repay the loan.

The completion of a public arts center on Union Avenue is compatible and complimentary with the investment Harford County and HCPL has made in our City with the new library opening in May, 2016.




Bringing Martha back

The Chesapeake Heritage Conservancy are working diligently to bring the historic Skipjack Martha Lewis back to her glory on the waters of the Susquehanna River and Chesapeake Bay.  Currently on dry land as extensive restoration and repairs are done, the Martha Lewis is still attracting visitors along Water Street to see the progress being made.

A 66-foot long pine trunk was received to be shaped into the new mast after an extensive search that spanned five states until one was finally donated by Paul W. Jones Lumber Company, Inc., in Snow Hill, MD. Work to restore Martha Lewis is being done at Havre de Grace Marine Center.

Economic Development hosts breakfast for business

The Havre de Grace Office of Economic Development organized an informal continental breakfast meeting open to business owners, both existing and prospective, to help bring the multiple players who can work with businesses together for information sharing and gathering. The breakfast was spearheaded by Havre de Grace Councilman David Martin to being dialog using social media platform and meetings to connect businesses to services on Fri., April 8, at MacGregor’s Restaurant from 7:30 to 9 a.m.

Representatives from the Harford County Office of Economic Development, Small Business Development Center, and Susquehanna Workforce Network were on hand, as well as city officials to review a host of services and programs available within the city.

Following presentations a brief walking tour of St. John Street and Washington Street was held by Bangs Property Management to showcase new  businesses, expanding businesses and improvements planned in Havre de Grace’s downtown area.

Excellence rewarded in USA Today’s Top 10 list

Havre de Grace residents in the know, already know amazing things happen behind the doors of the stately Victorian home at 452 Congress Avenue. Now so does everyone else. Or at least the hundreds of thousands of readers of USA Today.

Par Excellence Day Spa was listed as number five for must visit spas for travelers heading to the Baltimore region by USA Today recently. “Though Havre de Grace is a small bucolic town, the spa certainly  beats most city destinations at very reasonable  prices,” wrote Tamar Alexia Fleishman for USA Today, who added “head to toe treatments” are available at Par Excellence Day Spa.

“A vintage clawfoot tub allows for luxurious aromatherapy or aqua therapy treatments in one of six rooms, with a licensed physician available for acupuncture,” Fleishman added. Par Excellence Day Spay also offers teeth whitening, waxing, tinting and electrolysis, a full complement of nail services, facials and massages.

What is particularly thrilling about Par Excellence Day Spa making the top 10 list, is the locally renowned spa is in the top five company of The Spa at The Hotel Hershey, The Spa at the Ivy and The Spa at the Four Seasons.

Learn what the USA Today has already found out by visiting the spa or go to www.parexcellencedayspa.com or call 410-939-0029 and book your day of beauty today!