Ocean Pines Association President Doug Parks, during a regular Board meeting on Saturday, addressed Coronavirus preparedness, the Worcester County budget, Comcast, and the new capital reserve fund.
He also put out a call for volunteer committee members.
First, Parks said an Executive Council meeting was scheduled this Monday, March 9, at 7 p.m. in the Anna Foultz Room of the Ocean Pines Community Center on 235 Ocean Parkway. Executive Council meetings invite advisory committee chairs to coordinate with the Association President.
Speaking of committees, Parks said the Search Committee is seeking volunteer members. The committee each year helps recruit candidates for the Board of Directors election.
“If anybody is … willing to spend some time canvassing the area to look for candidates for the upcoming election, please see me. There’s still time to do so,” Parks said. “If we don’t get a Search Committee we’re not violating any rules – it’s just something [that’s] nice to have and, since it’s in our bylaws and governing documents, we want to make sure that we fill that out.”
To contact Parks, call 443-397-3077 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In further committee news, Parks said the Strategic Planning Committee is back in action after a several-year hiatus.
“We had an initial meeting the other day and it was well attended,” he said. “It’s going to be interesting to see how this committee starts to come back online and tie into … the new capital fund.”
Parks said the committee would be an integral part in gathering information from committees and membership related to purchases earmarked for the recently created new capital reserve fund.
Director Larry Perrone added that a work group studying new capital reserve fund policies and procedures would meet for the first time on Wednesday, March 11 at 1 p.m.
Also during the meeting, Parks reported that, on March 3, he attended the Worcester County Commissioners’ meeting in Snow Hill to present the annual funding request from Ocean Pines, to the county.
“We are pretty much doing the exact same request that we did last year,” he said, adding county grant requests were made for the Police Department, roads and bridges, and Recreation and Parks and tourism. “We’ve been pretty consistent with those requests and they’ve been pretty consistent with meeting those requests for funding.”
Parks asked for $525,000 for Police, $100,000 for roads and bridges, $25,000 for tourism, and $40,000 and Recreation and Parks programs.
On Comcast, Parks said the company would activate “Sector 1” in April, meaning homes in that area should begin to receive cable television and internet service. The Sector 1 area includes all or parts of Admiral Avenue, Beauchamp Road, Birdnest Drive, Bramblewood Drive, Briarcrest Drive, Burr Hill Road, Canal Road, Dawn Isle, Garrett Drive, Harpoon Road, Moby Dick Drive, Moonraker Road, Pinehurst Road, Sandyhook Road, Seafarer Lane, and White Horse Drive.
“It looks like they are on target for that,” he said. “There’ll be more information coming as they get closer to an actual delivery of services to the customers here in Ocean Pines, and they’re also going to start looking into some … pop-up events and things like that, so you’ll see more of a Comcast presence here in the community, as they move forward.”
Additionally, Parks thanked General Manager John Viola and his staff for their work on initiatives related to the Coronavirus. He singled out a recent press release, available at www.oceanpines.org/planning-effort-begun-for-potential-coronavirus-in-ocean-pines/.
“It’s sort of a public service announcement showing that the Ocean Pines community is aware and is doing our level best to provide information to the membership,” Parks said. “I urge people to look at, not only the information on the Ocean Pines website, but other sources of information on the Coronavirus and all the activities surrounding that.”
Perrone, who is part of an Ocean Pines work group formed to address Coronavirus in the community, said the group specifically studied the potential impact to Ocean Pines operations, as well as “the decision-making process, if any of our community centers have to be closed.”
“We want to assure the community that the Police Department [and] Fire Department are aware and have contingency plans, and the work group made recommendations to the general manager, to make sure that the administration has contingency plans in place, should something occur where operations in Ocean Pines have to be shut down,” he said.
Director Frank Daly also thanked Viola for addressing the issue.
“Earlier this week I sent an email to Doug and to John and said, ‘Should we have a work group talking about what to do with the Coronavirus?’ Because it’s publicized and it’s something that we shouldn’t be afraid of, but it’s something that we should be getting ahead of,” Daly said. “I was pleased to find out, that work group already exists.
“For those of you that have lived in Ocean Pines at least since I have in 2013, [that’s] a pretty doggone pleasant change that we got in front of something before somebody [had to] come in and hit us with a bat and say we should be paying attention to it,” Daly continued. “Thank you, John, for you and your team being proactive.”