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Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times
  • Clayton Council addresses Huntington Mills concerns

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  • Clayton Town Council addressed concerns from the Huntington Mills Homeowners Association at the council meeting Monday night.
    Huntington Mills resident Jerry Dorsey spoke with council members regarding several topics on behalf of the HOA. First, he asked if the town had any plans of putting a topcoat on streets in the development where construction is complete.
    Town Foreman Jeff Hurlock wasn't at the meeting, but Mayor Tom Horn explained the town is looking into finishing the streets in the development.
    Councilman Dave Letterman, chair of the Streets Committee, said ideally the developer would topcoat the streets; however, town officials understand this may not be possible. Therefore, he said the town is working with state legislators on the issue with the hope the tax payers won't have to pay for the project.
    Letterman said if the town is unable to get the state to help on the project, town officials have a back-up plan to do the work.
    "It's important to you and it's important to us," Letterman said. "We are working on it. We're trying to do it through a process and those wheels grind very slowly."
    Dorsey also asked about residents paying taxes on empty lots in the development; council told him residents only pay for their own property and not empty lots.
    Dorsey then asked about the town street sweeping the roads in the development. Councilman Alex Dias said he spoke to Hurlock on the matter; Dias said Hurlock would love to street sweep the roads in Huntington Mills but fears the lack of a topcoat on the roads will mess up the street sweeper.
    "If there's an area that's really bad he'll do it. But as far as hitting all the streets he's scared he'll come in and damage the truck," Dias said.
    Finally Dorsey thanked council for the town cutting overgrown lots in the development. He also asked about enforcement of grass cutting.
    "Some residents feel it's okay to only cut their grass once a month," Dorsey said.
    Council said the town does enforce grass cutting and the maximum height is 12 inches. Dias said Hurlock drives around and warns residents if their grass is too high; if it's not taken care of the town will cut the grass and charge the resident.
    Motions postponed
    Council postponed votes on two motions due to the absence of Hurlock from the meeting. Council members were expected to vote on a motion to, if approved, provide Rep. William Carson with a priority list of road work that needs to be done in town. Rep. Carson previously offered funding for some projects in town but wanted a priority list.
    Page 2 of 2 - Council was also expected to vote on a motion regarding topcoating streets in Liberty Knoll.
    Both topics will be on the agenda for the October council meeting.
    Handicap parking spot approved
    Council members approved a motion regarding a handicap parking spot at 306 Smyrna Ave. The resident had asked for a handicap parking spot. The town will either paint or put a sign informing residents of the handicap parking spot.
    Business license approved
    Council members approved a business license for 300 Bikes at 4681 Wheatley's Pond Road (Route 300).
    Letterman noted there is no parking on Route 300 at the business.
    Electric update
    Delaware Municipal Electric Corporation President Pat McCullar provided council with an update on how things are going with the organization. DEMEC serves and distributes utilities to nine municipalities in the state, including Clayton.
    McCullar said about 15 percent of the nation's electricity consumers get their utilities through a public power source similar to that of DEMEC. DEMEC distributes about 15 percent of Delaware's utility users through towns like Clayton and Smyrna.
    "We track right along with the nation," McCullar said.
    Along with discussing DEMEC's power supply portfolio, which includes the Beasley Power Station in Smyrna, McCullar also addressed the challenges for the organization. One such challenge is the volatility of the energy market which can cause drastic spikes and decreases in energy prices. McCullar said it's DEMEC's job to attempt and translate stable energy prices to the town's the company serves.
    Councilman Dave Letterman asked McCullar to explain the purpose of the Power Cost Adjustment Charge of a town electric bill. Letterman said the town may have to discuss zeroing out the PCAC rate.
    "The PCAC is a reaction to the change in fuel price and whole price of energy," McCullar said.
    When there's an increase or decrease in energy prices, the PCAC is used to balance out the cost to the customer.
    "Ideally the PCAC should be zeroed out. It may even get to a point where it's used as a credit," McCullar said. "It's an important part of it."
    Email Jennifer Dailey at jennifer.dailey@doverpost.com.
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