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Havre de Grace Gets an App: City Council Recap

Lawmakers also discussed small business, silt, emergency notifications and finances.

The following is a recap of the Nov. 19 City Council meeting in Havre de Grace, as Patch live blogged it.

8:30 p.m. The meeting concluded.

8:23 p.m. Council President Randy Craig said that before elections, people hear a lot about getting out and voting but that after elections, it still holds true.

"Stay involved and come down here to City Hall and let us know how we're doing," Craig said. He explained that the council meets the first and third Mondays each month at 7 p.m. and there is always time for public comment.

8:17 p.m. Councilman Bill Martin said that Salisbury University is coming to Havre de Grace to create an app that people can use on their smart phones to learn about the Lafayette Trail. 

"When you're standing in front of an important structure in our city, [you will] be able to take [your] phone and get more detail about it," Martin said.

He said that historical markers will go into the sidewalks in Havre de Grace.

8:10 p.m. Councilman David Glenn reported that he, the mayor and the police chief attended the County Council meeting last week to show their support for the completion of the stadium project at Havre de Grace High School. Glenn said the County Council will be voting on whether to approve the outstanding funds at its meeting tomorrow.

"I'm keeping my fingers crossed, and hopefully by the next meeting I'll have some good news to report," Glenn said.

Councilman John Correri provided his report.

8:05 p.m. Councilwoman Barbara Wagner said that people at the marina are concerned about silting, particularly as it relates to the Conowingo Dam. There will be a public meeting on the issue at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 3, at the Havre de Grace Community Center.

8 p.m. Councilman Joe Smith noted the upcoming Turkey Trot at Bulle Rock, which provides funds for the Susquehanna Hose Company. He also encouraged people to shop locally on Small Business Saturday.

On a personal note, Smith said he was happy to announce that his partner of 24 years is now his fiancee, after the passage of Question 6, and they are planning a January wedding. Smith said he was pleased that more than 60 percent of Havre de Grace residents turned out to vote.

"It was a great activity and I always look forward to election day, whether it's a city election or national election," said Smith. He mentioned there are many other things that need to be done.

8 p.m. It's time for individual council member reports.

7:43 p.m. Mayor Wayne Dougherty is presenting the financial report for the first quarter of FY 2013. [Patch will have more on this in a future article.]

The mayor asked people to have a pleasant Thanksgiving and remember with a prayer those fighting for freedom.

7:42 p.m. Police Chief Teresa Walter said more officers will be out doing holiday patrols downtown.

7:41 p.m. Larry Parks said public works is bidding out a project on Lewis Lane and Revolution Street as of Nov. 29.

7:40 p.m. George DeHority, director of finance, said that his office is putting together a program to make records more accessible and interactive.

7:38 p.m. Neal Mills, director of planning, said his office is reviewing plans for the new hospital.

"The next step is for...presentation and review of the site plan by the planning commission. There is no date and time set for that meeting as [of] yet," Mills said.

7:36 p.m. The City Council approved a special event, which is the March 31 Easter egg hunt that Shyla Glassman of the Mayor's office announced. Citizens are advised to arrive early.

"It's around 45 seconds," said Mayor Wayne Dougherty of the hunt.

Glassman said it will cost public works $100 to put together the event, and police will handle security through routine patrol.

7:35 p.m. The council approved a three-year contract for Larry Parks as the director of Public Works.

7:31 p.m. The council voted unanimously to adopt a resolution granting Thymly Products an enterprise tax credit.

7:30 p.m. The council passed a resolution, 6-0, to approve the enterprise tax credit for Cytec Engineered Materials.

7:20 p.m. Small Business Saturday is Nov. 24, and Meghan Simmons of Economic Development encouraged stores to list their specials. She said that shoppers come to Havre de Grace because they want something different than they get at a mall.

Brigitte Peters of the city's tourism office is talking about Small Business Saturday, an event in Havre de Grace that she said got the attention of WJZ in 2010.

Pat Donovan of the Chamber of Commerce said, "I love the unique shopping of Havre de Grace." She mentioned antiques, jewelry, art galleries and museums as draws for shoppers to Havre de Grace. "It is so very important that we support our local merchants," Donovan said. "They also pay city and county taxes."

7:15 p.m. Enterprise tax credits is "a great tool that we have," said Meghan Simmons, of the city's Office of Economic Development. Cytec and Thym products have applied for the credits, which the City Council must first decide to approve. [See 7:30 p.m.]

7:05 p.m. John Van Gilder of Inter Governmental Relations presented a video that recently came out of Harford County on its emergency notification system, called CTY.

According to Van Gilder, Havre de Grace has 4,600 subscribers to its CTY system, which is coordinated under the umbrella of the Harford County CTY.

The subject matter of the alerts is generally public works-related, Van Gilder said. "We can geographically pull a map up," he explained, "and call the people and businesses" that may be impacted by something like a broken pipe. He added that CTY is useful for silver alerts and other police-related matters as well.

In the last year, Havre de Grace has used the emergency notification system 82 times, with the highest volume in January and October. "The feedback has been extremely positive," Van Gilder said.

7 p.m. The meeting opened with the Pledge of Allegiance and a prayer.

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