FENWICK ISLAND – A discussion on portable storage units and parking will be deferred to a resort committee at the behest of the town council.
The Fenwick Island Town Council voted unanimously last week to refer a discussion on portable on-demand storage units (PODS) and parking on private property to the town’s Charter and Ordinance Committee.
Last year, the town council voted to amend an ordinance, requiring permits for the use PODS and dumpsters on private property. But officials noted the ordinance did not include specific uses or size limits.
“I was part of the council that passed the original ordinance, and I think at the time when the discussion was being carried on by the Charter and Ordinance Committee, PODS were deemed necessary for people under construction,” Councilwoman Vicki Carmean said. “I think that part has also been left out of the ordinance, that the PODS should be used in construction situations when a residential or commercial property is being remodeled or constructed. I also think some consideration should be given to the size of the PODS.”
Councilman Mike Houser noted the Charter and Ordinance Committee could also discuss enforcement measures for parking on private property.
He said in recent weeks he had received complaints of large-scale parking on open, private property, most notably at a church parking lot on Dagsboro Street.
“In one instance on Dagsboro Street, more than 20 vehicles, mostly with out-of-state licenses, disgorged beachgoers onto the streets without masks and not socially distanced …,” he said. “This is not healthy. In addition, it is avoiding town parking apps and permit fees.”
Carmean agreed something should be done to address the issue.
“I think it’s a question of enforcement and we’ve been through this before …,” she said. “I’ve always heard there’s no way to enforce it. I really think there has to be some way we can revisit this and maybe make improvements.”
Officials noted parking on private parking affected town revenues. Town Manager Terry Tieman noted the importance of working with property owners to address illegal parking.
“If the owners so chose, they can say you have the right to ticket anybody in this lot and we could do that,” she said.
“The key element in this is authorization by the private property owner,” he said.