Secretary supports Volunteer Fire Company

SECRETARY — Secretary Volunteer Fire Co. Vice President Sam Yockey received a donation from Mayor Melissa Dennis on behalf of town officials at the March 4 commission meeting. The mayor said, “Thank you for everything you do,” to which Mr. Yockey responded, “Thank you, too. We look forward to a continuing, outstanding relationship. We are at your disposal and are proud to be part of the community.”


On behalf of Boy Scouts Pack 169, Kristie Marshall asked the commission to consider a single track trail from the town park to behind Warwick Elementary School. According to commissioner Jennifer Beletsky there is already an unmaintained trail that can be cleared. Commissioners Susan Dukes and William Lauck explained that part of the existing trail is town property and part belongs to the school. The commission gave permission for the town’s section and said the group must ask the principal for the school’s section. The scouts also received permission to clean up storm caused debris in the park.


Mayor Dennis reported on a telephone conference with representatives from US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and ARRO Engineering to ensure that all the paper work required for a grant to fund the new waste water treatment plant is in order. The mayor explained, “We need a new plant since we’re not up to code now.” According to Commissioner Susan Dukes the project has “been in the works for 10 years.” She said that she and public works manager B.J. Gullion attended the recent Dorchester County Planning and Zoning meeting and, except for “some minor details,” the project was approved.


The commission agreed to purchase a commercial grade meter for the elementary school in addition to the one ordered for the ice plant at a total cost of $2,670. The motion passed at the previous meeting was amended to include the additional meter.


When the commission agreed to replace and extend the town park fence adjacent to Poplar Street to the water. The replacement was installed along the same line as the original. Before extending the fence they agreed to survey the entire property line and found it was inaccurate. Commissioner Lauck said “we gained anywhere from 8-10’.” Ms. Dukes added, “We didn’t realize we had that much property until it was surveyed. We really own more of that land than we thought.”


Mayor Melissa Dennis visited Warwick Elementary School 4th graders to discuss what the youngsters see as potential solutions to problems they see in their communities. She said, “You’d be amazed at 4th graders when you ask them what their concerns are.” A major topic was “stepping in dog poop. But they brought up drugs; they brought up vehicular hit and runs, damages to cars, and theft. Our kids are well aware of what is happening around them.”


Youngsters from Secretary, Hurlock, and East New Market had ideas about fundraisers and how they can contribute to their communities. Ms. Dennis said, “We have some big hearted elementary school students. I was proud to be part of that. My words of encouragement were that no matter how big or small you are you have to get along with each other or you can’t get anything done.”


Commissioner Beletsky updated the commission about her son’s Boy Scout project. To earn his Eagle Scout designation Paden Radunske must fulfill a community service project. Paden has chosen to erect a memorial to William Foxwell who passed away after driving into the creek from a dead end access road near the condominiums. Paden wanted to construct a bench with an engraved metal plate plus concrete flower beds. He offered to provide labor and materials at no cost to the town and noted at the Oct. 3 meeting that his design will be a barrier to prevent “any future vehicular incidents.”


Ms. Beletsky noted she, her son, and another scout were approached by a condo Home Owners Association (HOA) representative who said the scout needed permission from the HOA because they own the property. The project was in the initial stages of a foundation for the barriers and she was told to remove everything. She and the scouts agreed to remove the bench and eventually the HOA representative signed and approved the barriers. The concrete was poured. The president of the HOA said if the area is the town’s property then there are things the town should be taking care of; and, if not then he should be able to approve all projects.


She said the HOA representative raised the issue of plowing the road that abuts the condo property. Commissioners Lauck and Dukes said the road is a right of way that has been there for at least 76 years. Ms. Dukes said “we plowed to the turn and Jaimie Harrington has plowed before.” The town will now plow the right of way. The snow will be pushed to the side and two parking spaces on the road that have been used by the condo will be removed.


Commissioner Dukes noted, “The fact is the parking spaces exist but they are on the road. It’s (the project) a safety barrier and I think what Paden is doing there is fantastic and it may save another life. This is going to protect people from going overboard.”

Susan Bautz is a freelance writer for the Dorchester Banner.

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