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South Bethany, the Best Little Beach in Delaware

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SPBOA Membership Meeting Minutes, November 15, 2014


1.  President James called the SBPOA meeting to order at 10:00 am on November 15, 2014 at the Town Hall meeting room.  Those present for the SBPOA Board of Directors were as follows: 

Treasurer – Sandi Roberts

Secretary – Linda Whitney

Vice President – Diana Cowell

Vice President – Carol Stevenson

Vice President – Andrea Lapinski


2.  The minutes of meeting for June 7, 2014 were read aloud by Secretary, Linda Whitney.  These were moved and approved for acceptance.


3.  President Saftich introduced new Board Member, Andrea Lapinski.  She is now in charge of communications and the newsletter.  President Saftich noted that most of these are now sent by email.


4.  Carol Stevenson reported on the Town Council Board meeting conducted on 11.14.14.   She stated that an email message needed to be sent to the membership advising of the events that have transpired at that meeting. 


5.  Linda Whitney, Secretary and Events coordinator reported that she is looking at the Bull Roast for this spring. 


6.  The main purpose for this meeting is to discuss the proposed budget.  It was reported by the President that there are 794 members at this time.  The draft budget was based on a smaller number of members.

            a.  The Bull Roast was projected to cost $5449 and projected to bring in $2400 from ticket sales.  After much discussion, it was decided to keep this budget since the costs were based on the costs from 2014.  It was moved to keep the target of 240 persons attending and it was noted that the Town staff, including the Police force was also invited.

            b.  It was noted that the cost of merchandise of $2100 was to remain as an expense (for SB tee shirts, hats, etc.).  It was noted that sales may not retrieve this amount in 2015 but there may be some profit in the sales.

            c.  Much discussion followed about having either 1 or 2 luncheons for the volunteer neighborhood walkers.    Many pros and cons were noted, however, it was motioned and passed to keep the number the same as last year, one in the winter and one in the spring.

            d.  There was much discussion about using Constant Contact for email communications.  It was noted that a single mailing to the membership costs $2500.  It was decided that the SPBOA membership and bull roast information should still be sent by mail in the spring.

            e.  A motion was made and passed to accept the budget (see Budget page).


7.  Diana Cowell reported on the Neighborhood Watch, and noted that there has been some theft in the surrounding towns.   The former Mayor’s house was burglarized recently as well. 

            a.  A Volunteer luncheon is scheduled for December 10th at Matts Fish Camp.  The captains were recognized and thanked.  It was noted that there are 81 streets within the watch program and 50 volunteers.  One of the walkers requested the window cards be distributed earlier than Labor Day next year.  It was suggested mid-August should be the target.

            b.  Diana stated she would not continue as the coordinator next year but would mentor the next volunteer for this position.


8.  Newsletter issues were discussed.  It was noted that there have been numerous letters from the President, flyers and Town Updates sent by email.    It was mentioned that maximum use of email would be made but the spring membership newsletter would continue to be sent by hard copy and USPS. The Bull Roast announcement will be sent via email but hard copies will be mailed to property owners who do not have email addresses on file.   

            a.  It was noted that current mailing and email addresses were needed and should be sent to Ms. Lapinski.


9.  News Updates were given.

            a.  It was reported that the new sewage lift station was scheduled to be complete before the end of 2014.

            b. The Historic Society for 5 local towns, including South Bethany, have been given a house in Millville on Oakwood Avenue.

            c.  It was reported that a new pension system for the Ambulance persons has been adopted.  This will save money.

            d.  Members were encouraged to set up Smart 911 for themselves.

            e.  The SB police reported that there have been many DUI arrests and a number of kayaks have been stolen.

            f.  New street signs have been installed on the west side of Ocean Highway.

            g.  The Town Council has agreed to investigate the supply of natural gas for the Community.

            h.   The Council will discuss a beach smoking ban.

            I.   A discussion was held regarding the Council deliberations for mandatory free board as part of the proposed changes to the Flood Plain Ordinance (FPO).  This is required to be updated and approved by FEMA before March 15, 2015.  It was noted that over 60 persons attended the Council meeting on November 14th and only 2 were in favor of the proposed change.  It was also noted that the State Attorney General had advised against the previous Council vote but in a vote of 5 to 2 the Council rejected this opinion.  It was recommended that the mandatory freeboard be taken out of the new FPO but the Council rejected this.  Citizen comments included terms such as dictatorial, overbearing, not appropriate for a winter time ordinance when most are not present, unbalanced, etc.  One person asked why, just 10 weeks after the Council passed an ordinance allowing for voluntary freeboard, the Council decided to change to mandatory freeboard. There was discussion of a possible referendum to take into account the will of the property owners.  It was noted, however, there would be 3 meetings of the Council to discuss the proposed ordinance before it was adopted.  It was also noted that the new FPO had to be approved by FEMA by mid-March or the Town would lose its membership in the FEMA sponsored management plans and would not be eligible for Federal assistance for 2 years if the new FPO was not passed by mid-March 2015.  It was noted that a new FIRM (Flood Insurance Rate Map) would be in effect in March 2015 and some mandatory BFE (Base Flood Elevations) requirements would change.  SBPOA will review the options and send an email to members.


A motion was made and seconded and the meeting was adjourned at 11:50 AM.