New Fenwick Board Addressing Staff, Board & Committee Vacancies | Fenwick Island


Jacqueline Napolitano was sworn in as the new member of Fenwick Island City Council on Friday August 20. Board secretary Bernie Merritt, right, took her oath and then handed in her resignation from the board.

On Friday August 27, the new Fenwick Island City Council members took to the podium for their first regular council meeting since being elected on August 7 and got down to business.

With only one board member, Vicki Carmean, remaining on the old board after the election of four new members and the resignation of the other two incumbents, Carmean, as the new board chair, opened the meeting with a brief statement. .

Much of the meeting revolved around the actions council needed to take following these resignations, as well as those related to the general manager, municipal notary and many members of municipal committees. All the resignations came after the municipal elections on August 7, in which the four newcomers swept the incumbents in the wake of a controversial election.

One of the first steps the newly elected council took was to repeal its predecessors’ rules on public participation in council meetings, which were limited to two minutes per person, with a total of 30 minutes for comments. of the public at the end of each Meeting.

“All the old rules are gone,” Carmean said.

There is now no time limit for public comments, either globally or for individuals. Carmean said, however, that “after five or six minutes, if you haven’t finished speaking, we’ll leave it up to the board to decide what we want to do – if we want to defer that to another meeting, if we want to send it to committee or just thank you for your thoughts.

To demonstrate the new rules, Carmean sought public input before council approved the July council meeting minutes. Under the August 27 resolution, public comments will be gathered before council takes action on any matter.

Addressing recent resignations of municipal committee members, council secretary Natalie Magdeburger said, “There are a number of committees that have no members, or only a few. Therefore, Carmean said, the council is suspending the activities of most municipal committees “until we have a chance to consider [new] applications. “

A member of three city committees, Charlie Hastings, took advantage of his public comment time to announce that he was resigning from three city committees – Budget, Audit and Dredging.

Carmean mentioned two committees – Charter and Ordinance and Audit – which would be filled with “gradual acceptances” as applications arrive, as the issues these committees deal with often require timely action.

Likewise, Carmean said, the process of hiring replacements for general manager Terry Tieman and city lawyer Mary Schrider-Fox would begin immediately. Both resigned following the August 7 elections. The board discussed the need to fill the two positions during an executive session and voted to proceed with the remainder of that closed session.

Meanwhile, the new board members met with city employees to learn more about each of their positions and responsibilities, Carmean said. In order to comply with Freedom of Information Act rules regarding board activity, new board members met with employees “two or three at the most” at a time. “At no time were there four together,” she said of the board members.

Magdeburger praised the staff for their commitment during the transition period.

“I know it was very unsettling and there was a bit of chaos at the start of things,” she said, “but you were amazing.”

The council also voted to restore the phrase “Quiet Resort” to the town’s seal. Carmean said he was removed from the seal “three or four years ago”. Also, in what Carmean called “a measure of goodwill in the community and to bring the community together,” council members adopted a resolution regarding ethics, transparency and the promotion of good relations between the City and all. community members.

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