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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette



(July 16, 2015) The Berlin mayor and council took the following action during a public meeting at Town Hall on Monday.
Façade grant
The council unanimously voted to continue the Façade Improvement Program, in partnership with the state’s Department of Housing and Community Development, for the fifth consecutive year.
The program offers matching grants, provided by the state, to businesses seeking to make improvements.
Wells emphasized that the program costs the town nothing and that the program had $50,000 remaining from last year’s grant.
“I’m actively pursuing property and business owners to apply for this 50/50 matching grant,” she said. “I told them I really want to give them money!”
Several applications, she said, had come in during the last month. New Berlin gallery Art in the Fields, Wells added, planned to apply for the grant next year, necessitating the need for additional funding.
For more information on the grant program, visit
Sidewalk sale
Economic Development Director Ivy Wells helped reach a compromise for the annual Sidewalk Sale, on Aug. 14-16, which has run in the town for more than six decades.
Rechristened as the Summer Sidewalk Sale, the event will be restricted to town sidewalks on Friday and Sunday, with a special street closing on Commerce Street from Victorian Charm to Bruder Hill set exclusively for Saturday.
All merchants in downtown Berlin are invited, but not required, to participate.
Wells said the compromise “shows that the town is very accommodating [to businesses].”
New ordinances
Public hearings were opened and closed for two new town ordinances without comment. The council unanimously approved both measures.
Ordinance 2015-04 adopted the FEMA floodplain, while Ordinance 2015-05 amended Chapter 6 of town code, addressing building and building regulations, specifically sprinkler systems in new home constructions.
Town Attorney David Gaskill said, if the town had not passed 2015-05, Planning Director Dave Engelhart “would not be able to issue permits for homes without sprinklers anyway.”
Fiddler’s Convention
The council also approved the 23rd annual Fiddler’s Convention, set for Sept. 18 and 19.
“I think it really has become our signature event,” Mayor Gee Williams said.
National Night Out
The mayor and council approved the date and conditions for the 2015 National Night Out in Berlin, set for Aug. 4 from 4-7 p.m., on Flower Street. Atlantic General Hospital will offer health screenings, and religious ministries will be involved in the event, according to Berlin Police Chief Arnold Downing.
District 2 Councilmember Lisa Hall called it her favorite event.
“It’s like the [whole] town comes out,” she said.