by Lisa Tome
Political newcomer Lyn Dugger is now Rising Sun's vice mayor.
Before asking for nominations for the position, Mayor Bob Fisher said he consulted parliamentarian Michael Swift regarding how the process should be handled. Commissioner Bernie Chiominto nominated Commissioner Travis Marion. Commissioner Lyn Dugger nominated herself. Chiominto and Marion voted for Marion. Commissioner George Walker and Dugger voted for Dugger. That meant that the mayor had to break the tie. He cast his vote for Dugger.
Resolution 2013-13 established who will handle check signing and banking for the town. Chiominto, Walker, and town administrator Calvin Bonenberger will be on the accounts. Chiominto will continue as police commissioner. Marion will remain in charge of parks, recreation, and the town's web presence. Dugger will be Water and Sewer Commissioner. Walker will be in charge of streets and sidewalks. Walker will also be ex-officio for the Planning and Zoning Commission. In other business:
• Before they officially took office, Commissioners Lyn Dugger and George Walker participated in a closed door meeting. Two hours before the Tuesday, July 9 meeting, Walker and Dugger attended the meeting which was for legal issues and personnel matters.
• A moment of silence was held for Jeff Kessler. A home is being built for Kessler, a wounded veteran, and his family near Rising Sun.
• Outgoing commissioners Joanne Osborne and Stephen Naughton were thanked for their service. They also received a photo of town hall which was signed by fellow board members. Both thanked the residents and fellow board members.
• Clerk of the Court Derrick Lowe administered the oath of office to both Dugger and Walker.
• This marked the first town meeting in which professional videotaping was performed under the new contract. Board members were surprised to learn that the microphones placed in front of them don't serve as amplifiers for the audience. They are microphones that go to the camera. Commissioner Marion reported following that meeting that a speaker will be used for amplification at future meetings. The town is paying about $450 per meeting for professional videotaping. If the meetings run longer, the price goes up.
• The board repealed a resolution from 2012. That resolution has former Mayor Tom Mumey and former Commissioner Augie Pierson in charge of water and sewer. It was explained that repealing that was just a bit of housekeeping.
• The mayor reported that he graduated from the Academy of Excellence in Governance at the Maryland Municipal League convention in June. The mayor also called for volunteers to work together to improve the community. • The business sponsorship banners are doing well, reported Bonenberger. He also said the town will use some of the proceeds to buy banners to promote the Lions Club. Bonenberger also suggested that the town offer tickets to the upcoming Lions Club crab feast to residents at a discount with the town funding part of the cost.
• The street repaving project is being placed on hold while plans for Mount Street are being considered. The town is financing $600,000 for street paving and sidewalk improvements.
• The town water tower was struck by lightning. The tower is intact but internal components and equipment was damaged. "We don't have a water emergency," said Bonenberger.
• With the start of the dog park, the town may hire temporary help to assist with grass cutting. The bid prices for the dog park came in higher than anticipated. The town may expand its partnership with Octoraro Watershed by using their contractor.
• A psychic reader still intends to set up shop in Rising Sun. A massage therapist also wants to open a business in town.
• Police Chief Chip Peterson said that with Walker and Chiominto on the board, the town has more than 70 years of public safety experience on staff. He also reported that a large number of applicants have applied for one of two police officer jobs in Rising Sun. The chief also commended PFC Adam Dominick for his actions in the wake of the building crash on Pearl Street. "We haven't seen an accident of that magnitude in quite some time," said Peterson.
• Tom Mumey reported that the Historic Preservation Commission's event featuring a harpist was a success. The HPC is also recruiting members who will help with the Civil War Reenactment and fundraising. There is also work to be done to reopen the museum.
• Augie Pierson apologized to Walker and Dugger for comments he made at a prior meeting.
• Tom Mullaney said he "looks forward to an era of cooperation and progress" with the new board.
• Lyn Griffin said the harpist and movies were good events.
• Jeff Aughenbaugh read from the state constitution.
• Chris Callahan said he hopes the new commissioners do the town justice. He also invited the mayor to participate in a forum. Callahan also asked Dugger the duties of a vice mayor. "I am learning. I am learning fast. That's my answer," said Dugger.
• A resident, Karen Long, was removed for being unruly. She told the mayor to "kiss my butt." When she was being removed she said "I'll gladly leave, because you make me sick."
• Sandra Campbell said she is upset about what she sees posted on facebook. She said that the town hall meeting, town hall, and town administrator pages have upset her. She asked board members to review what is posted. She also said if she wanted to sell her home, people wouldn't want to live here because of what is posted.
• Shirley Deppish said that the mayor, Keith Campbell, and Roger Lamb should apologize for accusations made against Bonenberger.
• Joanne Osborne was nominated and confirmed to fill a vacancy on the Planning and Zoning Commission.
• Chiominto reported that the police car for sale by Port Deposit was bought by Perryville. He also said that two town officers want to be the DARE officer.
• Dugger said she is looking forward to the challenges of water and sewer. She said she is learning fast and reading up. She went to Maryland Municipal League and attended a lot of classes.
• Walker said a lot of what he has seen on facebook was about him. He encouraged people to come see him if they have questions. "If you want to know what I think about any issue, I'll be blunt. It's very easy to get on your computer and type in whatever you want," said Walker.
• Marion reported that the first Movies in the Park was very successful. He also said that the only town website is Town of Rising Sun Maryland Official.
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