First osprey of 2012 observed in Lewes
Joe Scudlark, at the College of Earth, Ocean and Environment in Lewes, said the first osprey of the year has returned for another season of Delaware coastal life including mating, fishing and raising young. He sent an email to the Cape Gazette on Saturday, March 10: "Driving down Front Street when I spied my first osprey of the season. He (males are typically the first to return) was flying low up the canal, wings beating hard to make headway against the stiff NW wind." Ospreys usually return to the Delaware coastal area within a week of so of St. Patrick's day, following winters in Florida and farther south. They reside here through the spring, summer and fall before leaving for the winter. Osprey numbers have grown steadily through the past couple of years. Their nests, built in dead trees, on nesting platforms, on duck blinds and, to the the chagrin of utility companies, on power poles, are commonplace along the waterways of Delaware's Cape Region.
Rehoboth Animal Issues Committee to meet
The Rehoboth Beach Animal Issues Committee will meet at 1 p.m., Friday, March 16, in the city commissioners’ room to discuss the city’s feral cat situation and the trap/neuter/release program.
The committee will hear updates on Delaware Humane and SPCA walks and dog parks. Finally, the committee will discuss the concept of pet pick-ups for the city, including costs, feasibility and locations.
Budget, lake protection top Rehoboth agenda
The Rehoboth Beach commissioners will approve the city’s 2012-13 budget at their regular meeting, 7 p.m., Friday, March 16, in the city commissioners’ room.
The commissioners will discuss the potential for additional protections and requirements for construction in and around the city’s lakes.
A public hearing will be held on a permit of compliance request by Susan Wood, owner of The Cultured Pearl, 301 Rehoboth Ave., to modify the restaurant’s floor plan.
In other new business, the commissioners will consider awarding a contract for a new beach cleaner, awarding a contract for a new tractor for the Public Works Department and adopting an ordinance increasing the infrastructure improvement sewer service surcharge to 50 percent of the total of each sewer bill.
Rehoboth board to decide on rehearing
The Rehoboth Beach Board of Adjustment will decide whether it will rehear an appeal of the building permit for the house at Lot 6 Silver Lane at 7 p.m., Monday, March 19, in the city commissioners’ room.
The house has raised the ire of neighbors and Silver Lake advocates because its concrete foundation appears to rise out of the lake. However, the board refused to hear the case on Jan. 30 because the opponents of the house failed to file their appeal within 30 days as required by board rules.
The board will be deciding only whether to rehear the case. The motion for reargument has been requested by attorney Gene Lawson on behalf of Silver Nine LLC, neighbor Marti Cochran, Save Our Lakes Alliance3 and the Rehoboth Beach Homeowners’ Association. The Joseph and Veda Levy Trust owns Lot 6 Silver Lane.
In addition, the board will hear a request for two variances for property at 232 Country Club Drive.
Owners Neal Zimmerman, Beverly Zimmerman and Sharyn Santel are requesting a variance to allow Country Club Drive to be the front of the property and a variance to allow a one-and-half-foot variance from the six-foot side-yard setback requirement for a pre-existing structure and to allow the existing garage to remain in place.
Should the second variance not be allowed, the owners are requesting an alternative variance to allow a five-and-a half-foot variance from the required 10-foot rear-yard setback and allow the garage to remain in the front yard.
Attorney Daniel Myers II has requested the variances on behalf of the owners.
Milton planners to meet March 20
The Milton Planning & Zoning Commission will meet at 7 p.m., Tuesday, March 20, at the Milton Public Library. The panel will discuss and possibly vote on an application from Fernmoor Homes at Heritage Creek for a revision to the subdivision record plan for Phase 2B of Heritage Creek. For more information, call town hall at 302-684-4110.
Rehoboth Shores public hearing set March 22
Included on the Thursday, March 22 Sussex County Planning and Zoning Commission agenda is a public hearing on a conditional-use application filed by Nanticoke Shores Associates LLC to amend a condition requiring earthen berms around the perimeter of the property of a proposed campground. County officials had previously approved an application allowing a section of the Rehoboth Shores manufactured home park in Long Neck to be converted to a campground/recreational vehicle park. Meetings get under way at 6 p.m. in the county administration building on The Circle in Georgetown. For a complete agenda go to sussexcountyde.gov.
Hearing set on water pollution control fund
The Delaware Clean Water Advisory Council will have a public hearing on the Delaware Water Pollution Control Revolving Loan Fund projects at 9 a.m., Wednesday, March 21, at the Kent County Administrative Complex, Room 220, 555 South Bay Road, Dover.
At the hearing, the council will accept public comments and input on the proposed revised 2012 project priority list and intended use plan for municipal wastewater and green project reserve requests.
Copies of both documents will be available at the public hearing. Written comments will also be accepted through Thursday, April 19, by email to Jessica.Velazquez@state.de.us or by mail to DNREC, Financial Assistance Branch, 5 East Reed St., Suite 200, Dover, DE 19901.
For more information contact Velazquez at 302-739-9941.
Sussex will learn about Local on the Menu
After a two-week hiatus, Sussex County Council gets back in action at 10 a.m., Tuesday, March 20, in the county administration building on The Circle in Georgetown. On the agenda are presentations from Southern Delaware Tourism Office about the Local on the Menu initiative and another from the Sussex Conservation District. See a complete agenda at sussexcountyde.gov.
Dewey hydrants will be flushed March 19-23
The Sussex County Division of Environmental Services will perform an annual flush of water lines in the Dewey Beach water district from Monday, March 19, to Friday, March 23. Hydrants will be flushed between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. each day during the five-day period. The flushing is performed each year as part of routine maintenance and is intended to clear sediment from the lines to ensure quality water is delivered to the district’s customers. During the flushing, users may notice some temporary discoloration and turbidity of their water. However, users planning to cook or wash clothes or dishes are reminded to open the cold water line through their faucets before drawing hot water through their water heaters. Users with questions or concerns can phone 855-7374.