Local News

Principal describes birth of magnet school

Southern Delaware School of the Arts (SDSA) Principal Tim Fannin recently announced he would retire at the end of the school year.
FanninFannin

BBVFC breaks ground on new fire hall

Members of the Bethany Beach Volunteer Fire Company, residents, town and state officials gathered in Bethany Beach on Monday, Jan. 31, to break ground for the company’s new fire hall.

Fenwick renews cable contract with Comcast

Fenwick Island Town Council members voted unanimously at their meeting Friday, Jan. 28, to renew the town’s franchise agreement with Comcast cable television company. (Council member Chris Clark was absent.)

Bethany man has run-in with moving house

The moving of homes in the area’s coastal towns is a relatively common occurrence, but a house move scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 11, led to the arrest of a Bethany Beach man.

County reviews moderately-priced housing

Sussex County Council checked progress on the moderately-priced housing initiative at the Feb. 1 council meeting.

At council’s bequest (last October), County Administrator Bob Stickels put together a committee to study the topic.

Presidents return to Frankford

There weren’t enough candidates to bother with a town election in Frankford this year, but Council President Robert Daisey has reenlisted, and former-Council President Maynard Esender has returned to the fray as well.

The election was scheduled for Feb. 5, but instead council will simply reorganize at the Feb. 7 town meeting.

County council reviews 2004 audit

Sussex County Council hosted accounting firm Jefferson, Urian, Doane & Sterner at the Jan. 25 council meeting for a review of the 2004 fiscal year.

County finance director David Baker presented the report, but acknowledged Elaine Graves and Sheldon Forney (associates), Jean Schmidt and Kerry Rahe (accountants) for their work on the project.

Bethany renews contract with lobbyist

The Bethany Beach Town Council unanimously voted to renew the town’s contract with beach replenishment consultants Marlowe & Co. at the council’s Jan. 21 meeting. The contract pays the firm $3,500 per month, from January to December 2005, with a maximum of $350 per month in out-of-pocket expenses.

Bethany dam project creates concern

“We will not cause flooding in other areas to solve problems in Bethany Beach.”

It was important enough of a statement that Bethany Beach Town Council Member and Drainage Committee Chairman Harold Steele felt compelled to reiterate it on numerous occasions and in numerous ways in recent weeks, including at the town council meeting Jan. 21.

License revocation ordinance approved

Bethany Beach Town Council members unanimously approved two pieces of legislation at their meeting Friday, Jan. 21.

On second reading, the council agreed to add more teeth to the enforcement of town codes and fees by beefing up its ability to revoke business licenses.

County P&Z denies retail near St. George's church

The Sussex County Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission, at the Jan. 20 P&Z meeting, decided Gregg White’s self-imposed deed restrictions weren’t enough to warrant a change of zone from agricultural-residential (AR) to commercial (C-1).

OV shuffles ordinances

Ocean View Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission Members on Jan. 20 moved into a holding pattern on a zoning ordinance aimed at reducing density.

The entire commission was present, as were Mayor Gary Meredith and Council Member Eric Magill.

Fire Report

The Bethany Beach Fire Department received assistance from Millville, Rehoboth Beach and Roxana firehouses as they responded to a house fire in Bethany on Sunday, Jan. 23.

The home, owned by Sarah McGuire and Deirde McHale, was not occupied at the time of the fire.

Firefighters arrived at the scene at 6:48 p.m., and encountered heavy fire in the dwelling.

Bethany deadlocked over church property

Town officials in Bethany Beach were reluctant to formally commit themselves to a plan to use the former Christian Church property adjacent to the town hall as “open space” when offered $250,000 to do so at the Jan. 21 town council meeting.

DelDOT responds to BFCC's center lane request

The Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce recently asked state officials to consider significant design modifications for an improved Route 26, just as that project began rolling ever so imperceptibly forward.

Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) Secretary Nathan Hayward defended the existing design in a Jan. 6 response.

Gas leak puts BBVFD out in the cold

While most area residents were taking great pains to stay inside last weekend — well away from temperatures in the teens, wind chills near 0, and side streets that resembled ice-skating rinks more than byways — more than two dozen firefighters, paramedics and fire police spent hours in the freezing cold in support of their mission of public safety.

Bethany selects new auditor

The Bethany Beach Audit Committee recommended to the town council on Jan. 21 that the town contract with auditing firm Trice, Geary & Meyers to be the town’s auditor for the coming year.

Farmers advised to watch for soybean fungus

Sussex County may be renowned for poultry, but farmers grow a hill of beans here, too.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) statistical survey for the state (found at www.nass.usda.gov/de), soybeans are planted to more acres in Delaware each year than any other field crop.

Boesch takes over as planning chair

The Bethany Beach Planning Commission saw a number of changes at its meeting Saturday, Jan. 22. First, resident Jerry Dorfman joined the commission, appointed to the seat vacated by Lew Killmer upon his selection to the town council.

CORC establishes new procedures

Bethany Beach’s Charter and Ordinance Review Committee (CORC) has a new way of doing business, and that’s thanks — at least in part — to the committee’s recent efforts to develop a mission statement.

Hocker outlines his path to legislature

Rep. Gerald Hocker knows the 38th District — he was born and raised in Millville, and he hasn’t strayed too far over the years.
HockerHocker

County appoints new commissioner

Sussex County Council reported a father’s retirement, then nominated and appointed his son to the County Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission at the Jan. 18 county council meeting.
Commissioner W. Layton Johnson cut short his term, citing personal and family health issues, according to County Administrator Bob Stickels.

Seaside theme presented for Bethany Beach

A vision of the Bethany Beach of the future was presented to interested townsfolk Wednesday, Jan. 19, in a public hearing on motifs and themes that could be incorporated into the town code or a future architectural standard.

Ocean View checks on street quality

Ocean View Town Council held a work session on Jan. 18, hosting engineer Alan Kercher for questions about the recent street resurfacing in Savannah’s Landing.
Residents raised questions about the quality of the micro-surfacing job several weeks ago.
Joe McCourt represented the homeowners.

State legislators head back to work

The Delaware General Assembly opened session in Dover last week (Jan. 11), amidst ceremonial swearings-in and a musical offering from Southern Delaware School of the Arts (SDSA) students.

Shelter group undeterred by initial rebuff

Sanctuary looks for new piece of land for shelter

The Safe Haven Animal Sanctuary of Sussex County suffered a setback last month, but that has not dampened the board members’ resolve to find some centrally located real estate.

Communication committee brainstorms

The future was on the minds of members of the Bethany Beach Communications Committee when they met Tuesday, Jan. 18. Having made substantial progress on a number of communications-related issues, members of the committee had been asked by Mayor and committee Chairman Jack Walsh to consider what new areas they might need to focus on in coming months.

Forecasters predict gentle storm season

How do you determine nor’easter activity on the east coast by monitoring the western Pacific Ocean?

Not very easily.

However, National Weather Service meteorologists have concluded that this year’s weak El Niño failed to produce “persistent enhanced convection,” and hasn’t stirred the global precipitation patterns very much.

Mission statement becomes town template

The primary item on the agenda for the Bethany Beach Traffic and Parking Committee on Saturday, Jan. 15, was the creation of the committee’s mission statement.

Family starting over

The Lewis family — Robert and Terri, and their son, Robert — met singular misfortune on Jan. 3, as they lost their dog, Snowball, and all of their possessions to a house fire.

The Lewis home was completely destroyed.

According to Terri Lewis, the family has already begun clearing the lot.

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