Meetings are held on the last Tuesday of each month at 9 am
Agendas and Minutes
Tues, May 26, 2020 – Virtual – Conference Call
May Meeting Notes:
According to the call-in bridge statistics, 12 people called into our GRHBA meeting on Tuesday. The meeting was led by Suzanne Einstein and started at 9:00am.
New board members: Harriet Creighton, Ed Pickering, Meg Scott, and Bob Tacher were introduced.
Economic Development: Emily McCoy reported they received 129 applications for Kent County business grants. 69 have been authorized for payment; 15 are still in progress. EC is looking for more grants and programs to assist businesses with coronavirus-related equipment purchases and business modifications. Details to follow. They are doing promotions for Kent County in regional markets.
Tourism: Bernadette stated studies show people are looking to get out and travel. In Maryland, some town are shutting down streets for restaurant outdoor seating. A study shared by Joanne Rich showed 60% of people surveyed would travel by car immediately; 90% by July 15.
Town of Rock Hall: Bob Resele noted there were lots of people in town this weekend and few problems were reported. They are waiting for Phase 2 to begin soon. Public bathrooms in the Village Shops are open; those in the Civic Center are closed. There was a discussion about removing the tape on the benches in town and replace with appropriate signs. Dawn Jacobs asked what businesses thought about transportation needs this season and attendees overwhelmingly said yes. Dawn reported the town had raised $11,000 which could be applied to vehicle leases. Businesses in attendance stated they are willing to advertise to support as well. Mark Einstein suggested allowing golf carts like Crisfield does.
Main Street Rock Hall: Laurie Walters reported on the “Social Distancing Bingo” cards currently available at local businesses and the Yarn Bomb project going on with kids from RHES.
Feedback from Businesses on Memorial Day Weekend activity:
Ann Bovee said Mariners and Rock Hall Landing Marina are getting cancellations for 4th of July and Pirates & Wenches weekends, but daily and weekend activity is good. Java was down in sales this year vs. last year, but less than expected. Mark & Suzanne said they’ve had good activity for private cruises. Dawn & Jim said the campground was full and turning down reservations. Ann B. said customers are asking about events and requested town website be updated.
Dawn stated town activities (parade & Civic Center) for 4th of July have been cancelled. Fireworks are TBD by RHVFC. Jim Rich said Pirates & Wenches traditional celebration would be cancelled due to concern about too many people gathering. The P&W committee is exploring a virtual event with minor activities. Plans for next year continue. FallFest planning is underway and is still scheduled at this time.
The next meeting is scheduled for June 30 at 9:00am. Details to follow.
Tues, April 28, 2020 – Virtual – Conference Call
April Meeting Notes:
Emily McCoy reported applications are being accepted for EIDL loan and PPP program.There will be a Department of Commerce program coming up and details will be sent to members. Gov. Hogan announced a 3-step program to reopen the economy. Kent County is developing a grant program to award $1000 to up to 65 small (less than 4 employees) businesses in the county. Details to follow in the next week. Jim mentioned Peoples Bank can do PPP loans. Lodging is an essential business that did not need to close. The federal government is releasing funds to counties. Details to follow.
Bernadette Bowman reported surveys show vacationers want to come 90-120 days after reopening. They will be driving, not flying, within 300 miles and we are a target destination. Tourism is working on positioning in print, digital and social media re-starting in June. Messaging will be: “When the time comes to travel, come to Kent County.” Maryland Heritage Area grants are available for 501C3s. The Department of Health has recommendations for cleaning and safety. They are attached below from Economic Development.
Town of Rock Hall
Bob Resele stated town leaders are worried about interstate travel. Kent County now has the 2nd largest per capita cases of Covid-19 in the state. An extra police office will be on duty this weekend. Bob has talked to marinas and boat owners are not to be working on boats. The mayor and council will have a discussion on 4th of July festivities at Monday’s meeting. Watermans’ Day has been cancelled. Dawn Jacobs’s letter can be found on www.RockHallMD.gov. The beach is closed and a 4 ft fence will be installed around the beach today.
The Lions Club needs space to store items for their September Community Yard Sale. Contact Debra Woodruff-Capper if you have space.
The Lions Club will pick up and deliver medications for anyone needing assistance. Contact Debra Woodruff-Capper for assistance.
Bill Weldon commented that it will be difficult to get employees back off unemployment because they will earn more on unemployment. Also, the cost of business will be higher due to higher food costs. He is questioning whether to open at all this year.
Rick Carter said he is concerned about the long term effects on businesses in town. Ours are small businesses and may not survive.
March 2020 – No Meeting
Tues, February 25, 2020
Tues, January 28, 2020