Hurlock introduces four new ordinances
HURLOCK — The mayor and council of Hurlock at its meeting Monday, Feb. 26, introduced four ordinances, one of which could encourage owners of blighted properties in town to fix them up.
Council President Charles Cephas introduced three of the four ordinances, including the one that would offer a discount on property taxes for owners of qualifying renovated properties.
The ordinance says owners would receive a 100 percent discount on the town’s property tax on the increase in assessed value the first year after rehabilitating an existing structure; that discount would then decrease annually, to 20 percent in the fifth year, before ending.
Cephas said it was based on a similar ordinance passed by the Dorchester County Council.
In addition, Cephas suggested looking into a property tax cut across the board during the upcoming Fiscal Year 2019 budget talks.
Based on calculations of how much of a loss in revenue could be absorbed by the town’s operating budget, which was $4.7 million in the current fiscal year, Cephas suggested a 2 percent cut.
“But any reduction would be historic,” Cephas said.
The other two ordinances Cephas introduced would address athletic equipment in public ways, and mandate training for town officials.
Councilmember Earl Murphy introduced the remaining ordinance, which would require grass clippings to be removed from sidewalks and streets.
Also at the meeting, the council directed Town Administrator John Avery to purchase a new sound system for the meeting room, from Sound Advice Audio Specialties in Salisbury.
Avery said the company recently installed audio equipment for the county council’s meeting room, and was highly recommended.
Murphy asked Avery to look into video equipment, for people who might want to make a presentation to the council. Avery said he would email the information about the additional cost to the council.