Fenwick Council OK’s $100K Transfer

FENWICK ISLAND – A transfer of $100,000 will allow the town to purchase two new police vehicles.

Last Friday, the Fenwick Island Town Council voted unanimously to transfer $100,000 in grant funding from Sussex County.

Councilman Paul Breger, chair of the Fenwick Island Budget and Finance Committee, said the funds will be moved from the town’s sidewalk reserve fund to pay for two new police cars.

“The committee discussed how to reapportion the money to purchase the two new cars. It seemed like the logical thing,” he said. “We have to use the money at our discretion by a certain date, and the date is approaching. So we decided that would be a good thing to bring to council.”

Councilman Bill Rymer, treasurer and committee member, noted the town’s sidewalk project has been fully funded. To that end, he said, the money will be used for other purposes.

“If there’s any necessary funding additional for the sidewalks, it can come from municipal street aid or something,” he added.

Mayor Natalie Magdeburger, however, noted that the town’s pedestrian safety committee could need that funding to hire a landscape design architect for the creation of landscaping near the town’s new sidewalks.

“It will give us the template when the state comes in for the rest of the sidewalks …,” she explained. “I don’t know how much it will cost, but it will be coming. So make sure we have that earmarked somewhere … it’s fine if it comes from another source.”

With no further discussion, the council voted 7-0 to transfer the $100,000 in county grant funding for the purchase of two new police vehicles.

The council last week also voted unanimously to eliminate the allocation of realty transfer tax (RTT) revenues dedicated to the sidewalk project.

“Because the sidewalks are fully funded, and for years we have been allocating 3% of the RTT revenues towards a future sidewalk project, the budget and finance committee voted on a recommendation to bring to town council to basically stop the allocation of 3% of RTT revenues towards the sidewalk reserve fund,” Rymer said.

A town-led sidewalk construction project began in earnest last year when the Fenwick Island Town Council signed off on a contract with Century Engineering to begin design work for the first phase of construction.

With more than $600,000 in funding set aside, the town recently installed sidewalks along five bayside blocks, beginning in front of Warren’s Station restaurant at Indian Street and moving south toward Dagsboro Street.

About The Author: Bethany Hooper

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Bethany Hooper has been with The Dispatch since 2016. She currently covers various general stories. Hooper graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 2012 and the University of Maryland in 2016, where she completed double majors in journalism and economics.