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Revenue, Visitors, Down at Local Beach
North Beach, MD - 8/10/2012
By Marty Madden
After listening to a cheerful part-time beach employee read the waterfront supervisor’s report during the Aug. 9 town council meeting, North Beach Mayor Mark Frazer’s mood grew a bit solemn. Frazer asked Waterfront Manager Richard Ball to offer his opinion as to why the waterfront revenue was down $2,588 over last year at this time and why the number of out-of-town visitors was down 2,064. Ball stated that the summer’s oppressive heat has been “a big factor” in the visitor count being down. “But the people are still coming,” said Ball.
Indeed the period between late June and early July, when a derecho clobbered the Mid-Atlantic, and searing temperatures yielded sometimes deadly results, many of the region’s residents weren’t going anywhere seeking fun. Ball expressed confidence that if a hurricane doesn’t blow up the bay, as it did last August, the visitor and revenue numbers should be comparable to 2011 figures.
The North Beach waterfront, comprised of a sandy beach and a fishing pier, is a mainstay for the bayside community. Town residents and their guests are permitted to use the amenities for free and Calvert County residents pay rates that are significantly lower than out-of-county residents.
The supervisor’s report also included data from a three-week “zip code poll” that was taken by town employees. Prince George’s County led the jurisdictions with 295 visitors during the period, followed by Virginia (254), Washington, DC (166), states other than Maryland and Virginia (103) and Montgomery County (101). Frazer directed staff to continue with the zip code survey.
In other meeting highlights, the town council approved three ordinances and two resolutions. An ordinance regarding fiscal year (FY) 2012 budget adjustments passed unanimously. The ordinances on the town’s comprehensive plan and design standards were approved on 4-to-1 votes, with Councilmember Randy Hummel voting no both times.
A resolution to submit a Community Legacy grant application to the state for $550,000 for parking lot development was approved unanimously as was a measure to adopt Calvert County’s Hazardous Mitigation Plan.
The council voted unanimously to award a $462,529 contract to Dissen & Juhn LLC of Stevensville for the town’s Timber Wave Barrier Project. The bid approval was recommended by Town Engineer John Hofmann and project designer Buck Emory. The Department of Natural Resources awarded $422,052 for the project with the other $60,000 coming from town funds.
Frazer introduced Buddy Jenkins as the town’s new code enforcement officer. Jenkins, a Chesapeake Beach native who resided in Florida prior to moving back to the area, has already begun work, having sent out notices of violations.
“Sounds like you’ve hit the ground running,” said Frazer.
Contact Marty Madden at firstname.lastname@example.org
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