Sussex County

County denies bridge over wetlands

The County Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission unanimously recommended denial of the Riverview application — a 1,400-foot wooden bridge to a proposed 72-unit residential planned community (RPC) — at the May 12 P&Z meeting.

County council unveils 2006 budget

County Administrator Bob Stickels gave the public a first look as he introduced the proposed fiscal 2006 budget, and sewer fees, at the May 17 county council meeting. This year’s theme was “Growth Continues,” although the general fund spending actually grew at a modest rate of 2.83 percent — to $53.3 million (combined county, state and federal monies).

County denies Moose lodge

Sussex County Council decided the County Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission’s conditions weren’t enough to make a Loyal Order of Moose lodge fit next to a chicken house, and voted unanimously to deny the application on May 10.

County looks at dogcatchers

Sussex County Council juggled the animal control hot potato at the May 10 council meeting, but where that responsibility will come to rest remains to be seen.

Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) leaders have voted unanimously to move away from those duties, and return to the society’s original mission.

Price tapped as the top Sussex County Democrat

Millville resident Shirley Price quietly reentered politics in recent weeks —– not as a challenger, but as an organizer. Price, a former state representative for the 38th District, has been selected as Chair for the Sussex County Democratic Party.

County considers emergency housing request

With budget time fast approaching, petitioners have begun to position their causes on Sussex County Council’s radar screen. The First State Resource Conservation and Development Council (RC&D) explained their mission at the May 3 council meeting.

County council defers on Moose Lodge

Sussex County Council held public hearing on the Loyal Order of Moose application at the April 26 council meeting.

County takes a look at Riverview project

Sussex County Council took another look at the Riverview project north of Millville on April 19, but deferred action: awaiting a recommendation from the planning and zoning (P&Z) commission.

The builders are seeking a residential-planned community (RPC) overlay on approximately 80 acres of land near the Tuckahoe Acres campground (Holt’s Landing).

County reintroduces open space talk

Sussex County Council once again turned to the issue of open space requirements at the April 12 council meeting, continuing work begun last year.

Council adopted two ordinances related to minimum open space requirements in new developments in August (cluster development) and December (minimums required, rather than recommended, in subdivisions) of 2004.

County puts a hold on 84 Lumber plans

Was it enough?
The proposed expansion at Clarksville’s 84 Lumber — chock full of improvements — came before Sussex County Council on April 12.

County moves to preserve local farms

Sussex County Council members approved a budget recommendation to earmark another $250,000 toward farmland preservation at the April 5 council meeting.

They’d approved a $125,000 match for state Department of Agriculture efforts, out of funds already allocated to the Sussex County Land Trust (SCLT) just two weeks prior.

Sussex has voice muted on HB 36

Below the C&D Canal, Delaware is a true blue state. Sussex and Kent Counties voted Bush for president and Lee for Governor in the last election.

However, the numbers have it in New Castle County. Apparently, Smyrna marks a bit of a political divide. Case in point, the updated and revised version of the bill formerly known as HB 99 — now HS 1 for HB 36.

CBS seeks greater voice at county level

Sussex County Council members, take notice. The eastern voting bloc wants more of a say in county affairs, and the numbers are behind them.

Chamber offers 10 reason to join

The Bethany-Fenwick Area Chamber of Commerce annual Member-Get-A-Member Campaign has hit its halfway marker. Members only have three more weeks to recruit new business members and earn their “bucks” to go shopping at the April 27 Business After Hours at the Woodsong Country Inn. However, this year there’s a twist.

County matches for open land donations

Sussex County Council signed off on a pair of Sussex County Land Trust (SCLT) partnerships at the March 22 council meeting.

SCLT President/CEO Wendy Baker said the trust had acquired or helped acquire 2,500 acres of open space in Sussex County since its inception.

County moves on local sewer

“This is kind of a milestone,” said Assistant County Engineer Russell Archut. “It’s the last piece — with this project, the entire southeast corner will be filled out.”

Slated for completion in May 2007, the Miller Creek and South Ocean View Sanitary Sewer Districts will bring the last remaining lands between the Indian River Inlet and Fenwick Island onto central sewer.

County gets charitable with budget

It’s getting to be budget time again. As part of the yearly ramp-up to County Administrator Bob Stickels’ final proposal, humanitarian organizations once again pitched their causes before Sussex County Council, on March 1.

County approves sewer Repair

Sussex County Council approved a bid for repairs on Bethany/South Bethany sewer mains at the Feb. 15 council meeting.
While such repairs historically required extensive trenching, new technologies should keep local impacts to a minimum.

County thinks internationally

Sussex County Council considered adoption of the International Building Code (IBC) and the International Residential Code (IRC) at the Feb. 8 council meeting, but deferred another week over Council Member George Cole’s opposing vote.

County fields subdivision appeal

Sussex County Council spent much of the Feb. 8 council meeting engaged with a subdivision appeal that had been denied at County Planning and Zoning (P&Z).
Attorney John Sergovic asked council to reconsider the Meadows at Creek Run, originally proposes as 57 lots on 53 acres east of Milton (reduced to 49).

County reviews moderately-priced housing

Sussex County Council checked progress on the moderately-priced housing initiative at the Feb. 1 council meeting.

At council’s bequest (last October), County Administrator Bob Stickels put together a committee to study the topic.

Farmers advised to watch for soybean fungus

Sussex County may be renowned for poultry, but farmers grow a hill of beans here, too.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) statistical survey for the state (found at www.nass.usda.gov/de), soybeans are planted to more acres in Delaware each year than any other field crop.

County council reviews 2004 audit

Sussex County Council hosted accounting firm Jefferson, Urian, Doane & Sterner at the Jan. 25 council meeting for a review of the 2004 fiscal year.

County finance director David Baker presented the report, but acknowledged Elaine Graves and Sheldon Forney (associates), Jean Schmidt and Kerry Rahe (accountants) for their work on the project.

County P&Z denies retail near St. George's church

The Sussex County Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission, at the Jan. 20 P&Z meeting, decided Gregg White’s self-imposed deed restrictions weren’t enough to warrant a change of zone from agricultural-residential (AR) to commercial (C-1).

County appoints new commissioner

Sussex County Council reported a father’s retirement, then nominated and appointed his son to the County Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission at the Jan. 18 county council meeting.
Commissioner W. Layton Johnson cut short his term, citing personal and family health issues, according to County Administrator Bob Stickels.

Shelter group undeterred by initial rebuff

Sanctuary looks for new piece of land for shelter

The Safe Haven Animal Sanctuary of Sussex County suffered a setback last month, but that has not dampened the board members’ resolve to find some centrally located real estate.

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