Chestertown coun­cil­men say farewell at their fi­nal town meet­ing

Kent County News - - FRONT PAGE - By JACK RODGERS jrodgers@thekent­coun­tynews.com

— Mon­day’s Chestertown Mayor and Coun­cil meet­ing was the fi­nal meet­ing for Coun­cil­woman Liz Gross and Coun­cil­man Sam Shoge. Both opted not to seek re- elec­tion.

David Fos­ter suc­ceeds Gross in the First Ward and Ellswor th Tol­liver suc­ceeds Shoge in the Third Ward. The new coun­cil­men will be sworn in at the Jan. 2 meet­ing.

Mayor Chris Cerino listed projects and ac­com­plish­ments that the coun­cil has com­pleted in the past four years dur­ing the mayor’s re­port, as a way of re­flect­ing on the end of his first term, he said. Cerino ran un­op­posed for re- elec­tion this year.

“I started mak­ing a list of all the things that have hap­pened in the past four years,” Cerino said. “And I just want to read some of the high­lights, and some of the is­sues that came up in th­ese guys’ terms.”

Cerino listed the work the coun­cil has done in Foun­tain Park, new zon­ing reg­u­la­tions for food trucks in Chestertown and other mile­stones.

Coun­cil­man Marty Stet­son spoke briefly about his experience work­ing with Gross and Shoge, be­fore read­ing his ward’s re­port.

“I re­ally have en­joyed work­ing with Sam and Liz,” Stet­son said. “They’ve been a real as­set to this coun­cil. I don’t know if I’ve ever en­joyed work­ing with any other two col­leagues as much be­fore.”

Shoge was brief in say­ing good­bye to the coun­cil. Be­ing ed­u­cated on the is­sues and ed­u­cat­ing your­self to the is­sues was a cru­cial part of be­ing a coun­cil­man, he said.

“I don’t want to be too sen­ti­men­tal or too long winded,” Shoge said. “I’ve en­joyed my time on the town coun­cil, four years have gone by re­mark­ably fast. I just want to thank the res­i­dents of Ward Three and the res­i­dents of Chestertown for all that you do.”

Gross also said a brief good­bye to the mayor and coun­cil.

“I’ll al­ways cher­ish the friend­ships I’ve made among the mem­bers of the coun­cil and the staff,” Gross said. “I wish my suc­ces­sor David Fos­ter all the best, and I hope he knows he can call on me at any time.”

Chestertown res­i­dent Ellen Stone and her fam­ily at- tended Mon­day’s meet­ing to honor Lewin Black­iston and Louis Man­cuso. The two Town of Chestertown em­ploy­ees re­turned a stolen lock­box to Stone last week, af­ter they dis­cov­ered it while clear­ing brush near the Gilchrest Rail Trail.

The box had been miss­ing for nearly seven years.

Stone pre­sented a gift for Black­iston and Man­cuso, though Man­cuso was not in at­ten­dance. Each re­ceived a glass mug with their names sten­ciled into it.

“I wanted to make sure they were rec­og­nized, go­ing be­yond their job du­ties,” Stone said. “Thank you very much for what you did.”

Chestertown Po­lice Chief Adrian Baker pre­sented his de­part­ment’s re­port for the month of Novem­ber. There were 348 calls for ser vice, he said.

Baker also spoke briefly about po­lice pres­ence in lo­cal schools, and his hopes for a bet­ter re­la­tion­ship with stu­dents.

“We wanted to look at a way to have a more pos­i­tive im­age and a more com­fort­able re­la­tion­ship with the stu­dents,” Baker said. The CPD has had an of­fi­cer in Kent County Mid­dle School about twice a week. “One had lunch with the kids last week,” Baker said. “So far I think that’s been ver y pos­i­tive, not only for the stu­dents but for the par­ents.”

SAM SHOGE

LIZ GROSS

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