Sustainable Maryland Community Certification Report

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This is the Sustainable Maryland Certification Report of Ocean City (Worcester), a Sustainable Maryland bronze applicant.

Ocean City (Worcester) was certified on October 05, 2016 with 260 points. Listed below is information regarding Ocean City (Worcester)’s Sustainable Maryland efforts and materials associated with the applicant’s certified actions.

Contact Information

The designated Sustainable Maryland contact for Ocean City (Worcester) is:

Name:Gail Blazer
Title/Position:Environmental Engineer / Engineering Department
Address:301 Baltimore Ave
Ocean City, Maryland 21842
Phone:4102898825

Sustainability Actions Implemented

Each approved action and supporting documentation for which Ocean City (Worcester) was approved for in 2016 appears below. Note: Standards for the actions below may have changed and the documentation listed may no longer satisfy requirements for that action. Additionally, points associated with actions prior to 2013 certifications may not be accurate.

  • Community Action

    Participation in MD Green Schools

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    Berlin Intermediate is a certified as a Green School in Worcester County, see link http://maeoe.org/complete-green-schools-list/#worchester. The School system is vital to any sustainability efforts. The future depends on educating the next generations on how to preserve and protect our resources. The Green Team is working with the Maryland Coastal Bays program to get other schools involved. We sent letter to the other Schools in the Area to encourage them to participate and offer our support and assistance. Attached is the letter we sent to the principals and we also sent the guidance documentation

  • Green Team

    Complete a Green Team Action Plan

    10 Points Mandatory

    Program Summary:

    Attached is the Draft Green Team Action Plan. It outlines the available action and potential points. We have included columns that specify the year the action will be completed and the individual or organization that is assigned to obtaining the necessary information. This action plan is a mandatory action but will be the working document for the green team to keep them on track. Part of developing the action plan is the community survey. This is attached.

    Create Green Team

    10 Points Mandatory

    Program Summary:

    The Coastal Resources Legislative committee is a standing committee that will also act as our GREEN TEAM. We have representation from a variety of facets of the community. We will meet bi-Monthly to discuss the action and the necessary backup needed to obtain the points. The committee/team will focus on the coastal resources and what we can do to protect them and keep the sustained. The representation will bring a wide range of ideas and interests to help with the actions needed to become certified sustainable.

  • Local Food Consumption

    Promote Local Farmers Market

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    We have a farmers market in town at 142nd Street and Coastal Hwy. We have included this information on a Sustainable Ocean City Webs site along with the other local markets. http://oceancitymd.gov/oc/departments/engineering/environment/sustainable-ocean-city/ Also we have flyers available at various location around town which promote Local Fresh and delicious See attached. We will have them at City Hall, Northside Park and the Convention Center.

  • Energy

    Municipal Energy Audits

    55 Points Priority

    Program Summary:

    The Town contracted a company to perform and energy audit on most of the City Buildings and street lighting. It is apparent the the savings that will be made will be substantial and pay for other energy saving measures. New Lighting and controls, new HVAC control upgrade, building Envelop upgrades, street lighting upgraded to LED, and new chillers and RTU's are the focus of the measures to improve efficiency and save money. The Audit was completed in February 2015 SEE ATTACHED City Hall Convention Center Public Safety Building Northside Park Gyms Northside Park Concession Northside Park Maintenance Building Fire Head Quarters Fire Station 2 Fire Station 3 Public Works A Public Works C & D Public Works E

  • Greenhouse Gas

    Municipal Carbon Footprint

    15 Points Priority

    Program Summary:

    The Town of Ocean City is working with Town Creek project to develop the carbon footprint for the town. We have supplied the utility bills and the fleet fuel information for the last several years. Attached is the MOU and other documentation we sent to create our carbon foot print. We also supplied them with the address location of all employees to evaluate the commute. Attached is the 2015 Carbon footprint and will be a baseline for future evaluations.

  • Health & Wellness

    Innovative Demonstration Projects

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    Just Walk is a free, self-directed, self-reported, incentive-based physical activity program that rewards participants for engaging in physical activity and provides positive reinforcement for healthy lifestyle choices. Participants that join the program are provided with resources and tools for how to develop a walking program, the benefits of physical activity, and information about healthy eating. Attached is the documentation for an innovative demonstration project. This program is Countywide but is also offered to all of Ocean City over 500 Ocean City residents and business employees take advantage of the program In addition the Town of Ocean City has passed the Healthy Eating and Active Living Resolutions (HEAL). The Town Pledges to make every effort to design streets and road to be safe for all including bike trails and lanes. to offer healthy choices vending policy and to promote healthy lifestyles for the workforce. We advertise this program through city email, have put signs in front of the building at NSP to designate us a “just walk” site. I can get you all the literature you’d like on the Just Walk program. As part of a grant we recently received from the Worcester County Health Department (Worksite Wellness Mini Grant), we have agreed to get 25% of the Recreation and Parks staff signed up for the Just Walk program. We will designate a “Just Walk” site coordinator who will act as a liaison with the Health Department. This coordinator will provide monthly reports to the Health department recording staff mileage for the month.

  • Workplace Wellness

    Join Healthiest Maryland Businesses

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town of Ocean City has joined the Healthiest Maryland Business. We know that a healthy workforce saves money through lower insurance costs and absenteeism. The program helps to save money but also is a place for information and support. The attached commitment letter insures the Town of Ocean City is working toward a healthy future. Kate Gaddis, Recreation Superintendent Kim Kinsey, Recreation Manager Other members of the Recreation staff can be involved from time to time and may be involved in the future. HMB – also send out emails that are passed on to employees with health and wellness tips. I will forward you an example of the type of email they send.

    Workplace Wellness Program

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    The town is a part of the Maryland Healthiest Businesss - Life Balance Program through the Worcester County Health Department – weekly nutrition and exercise program run for a full year for employees. - Posting of signage to encourage employees to take the stairs rather than the elevators in places that have multiple stories - Posting of posters on employee bulletin boards with information on the signs of stroke and heart attack - Semi-annual health fairs for employees with flu shots offered, blood pressure & BPI screenings, etc. - Walking clubs – weekly walking programs in 8 week sessions - Cessation workshops to encourage employees to stop smoking - Through our employee benefits employees have health insurance that covers mental health and well being - Programs are added quarterly based on the assessed need - We have taken the CDC pre and post tests on work site wellness through the Worcester County Health Department. They would have more information on our results. Programs are communicated through employee email, fliers are attached to be posted on employee bulletin boards for staff who do not have email.

  • Buy Local Campaign

    Promote Local Business Directory

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town created a Sustainable Ocean City Web page: http://oceancitymd.gov/oc/departments/engineering/environment/sustainable-ocean-city/ This links is on various partners websites including the Hotel Motel Restaurant Association (HMRA), Ocean City Chamber of Commerce, Maryland Coastal Bays Program, and the Assategue Coastal Trust. The Chamber of Commerce and the HMRA have developed buyers guides that are located on their website and we link to them on our Sustainable Ocean City Website. http://www.ocvisitor.com/media/files/newsletters/2015_ABG.pdf The Chamber of Commerce has a business directory on their website that we link to from our web site. The links is as followed http://chamber.oceancity.org/list

  • Green Business Recognition

    Join Maryland Green Registry

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    We applied to join the Maryland Green Registry. It is hoped that the Town of Ocean City can lead by example by being in the registry. We will set up a database on our Sustainable Ocean City Certified that will show the businesses that have followed our example. Thus we are joining and promoting the program. We called Laura Armstrong and this email with the decal was all they gave us for the acceptance letter.

  • Natural Resources

    Tree City USA

    15 Points

    Program Summary:

    Ocean City was named a 2014 tree City USA. this recognition was met by meeting the program's four requirements: Tree board or department, a tree care ordinance and an annual community forest budget of at least $2. per-capita and an Arbor day observation and proclamation. Every benefits when the community comes together with elected officials and concerned citizens to invest in urban forests. Cleaner air, improved storm water management, energy savings, increased property values and commercial activities are amogt the benefits enjoyed byhe Tree City USA communities.

  • Pet Waste

    Adopt a Pet Waste Ordinance

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town passed an ordinance to require pet owners to carry a receptacle to clean up after their pets. It is hope that they would be more obliged to pick up waste and be more conscientious of the impacts pet waste has on the community and the environment. It is important to require pet owners to pick up after their pets because of the the cumulative impact of uncontrolled dog excrement result in visual pollution and and a health hazard.

    Develop a Pet Waste Program

    5 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town of Ocean City passes a pet waste ordinance which lead to the installation of pet waste bag stations being located around town. Having the stations is a great public service as well as providing an environmental benefit. Pet waste can contribute to high bacteria levels, high nutrient levels and can be unsightly . This program is a significant contributor to the reduction of these pollutants.

  • Stormwater Management

    Stormwater Management Program

    15 Points Priority

    Program Summary:

    Storm water program is three faceted. There is the development/redevelopment piece where projects have to meet a certain water quality volume and pollutant reduction. The second phase is the municipal infrastructure where the Town addresses the outfall discharge and provide best management practices on city projects with environmentally sensitive design. The final piece its the incentive for private property to provide water quality and habitat projects through rain barrel offers, tree rebates, planting programs and cost share projects. The Town of Ocean City is only required to provide Storm Water for Water Quality there is no place for 100 year storage… But the sea wall and Front Dunal System are our protection from storm Surges. They have been weather tested over the last 25 years and are maintained continuously by the Corps, State of Maryland and the Town. The Town budget money to support the continued maintenance and repair of the dunes, We have design drawings if needed. Also the Town has a building limit line that prevent any construction east of that line. We have photos of this from different hurricanes, tropical storms and nor'easters. We have a pilot project to install the back flow preventers into the down town storm drains to prevent the surcharge of bay/tidal water through the storm drains which subsequently floods the street. These have been purchased and are to be installed this fall. Tidal Surcharge is the major flooding that the Town experiences. If this project works we will be installing them in the other hot spots. We have building Code requirements that buildings are require to have a 2' free-board above the existing ground and 3' free-board for properties in the special flood hazard area. Our building codes are very conservative in order to address storm events.

    Stormwater Manager / Coordinator

    15 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town of Ocean City hired an Environmental Engineer on 1/1/2001 to establish the Maryland 2000 storm water management ordinance and to administer the program. This position was to also administer the Critical Area ordinance and the landscaping ordinance. Other duties include board member of the Ocean City Reef Foundation and Liaison to Maryland Coastal Bays Implementation Committee. The Town of Ocean City being a partner in the Comprehensive Conservation Management Plan delegated to this position the responsibility to administer any actions in the plan that the Town of Ocean City was appointed. Gail Blazer is the Environmental Engineer assigned to the position and was hired January 29, 2001

  • Watershed Stewardship

    Create a Watershed Plan

    20 Points Priority

    Program Summary:

    With the help of our active community and dedicated volunteers, we have made remarkable achievements over our 18-year history. Much of the original Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP) has now succeeded in its goals. In fact, 80% of the original actions have been accomplished. This updated plan- renewed in 2014- represents a priority “to-do list” needed to leave a legacy of thriving coastal waters in this very special place. Both the original and renewed plans are attached. Attached are two documents that illustrate the Town's involvement in implementing the plan. Attached are the leveraging report that outlines the actions that the Town is addressing and funding through in-kind and monetary expenditures.

    Implement Watershed Stewardship / Pollution Prevention Outreach Program(s)

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town of Ocean City and the Maryland Coastal Bays Program developed a Homeowner's Guide to the Coastal Bays. This document is covers a variety of topic that qualify for watershed stewardship. This documents starts out with facts and figures and what you can do to save the coastal bays. Friendly substitutes are covered and chemical disposal requirements. Other topic covered are Green Gardening and Native Planting, recycling rules, healthy housekeeping and good business practices. Water and Energy Conservation are also discussed. This document is available in a hard copy but also available on line on the Town of Ocean City Sustainable Ocean City web page.

    Provide Voluntary Opportunities for Citizen Engagement in Watershed Stewardship

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town of Ocean City has a volunteer based DUNE PATROL. This organization has been functioning since the late 1980's . We assign volunteer to be stewards of stretches of dunes. They clean and inspect their dunes at their leisure year round and are part of our bi-annual beach clean ups. The first is in April around earth day and the second is during the International Coastal cleanup. We get about 100 participate at each event. Attached is the Dune Patrol information that is handed out the volunteers. They are given bags, gloves and litter gitters as well at t-shirts and hats to identify them and give them authority to enter and clean the dunes. The Ocean City Surf Club (Member of the Green Team) also developed a Beach clean program called Adopt-Your-Beach. Currently they only have 18 streets left to be adopted. Both these programs support each other and overlap with volunteers. The Town of Ocean City supports and promotes this program and provides trash removal, bags and gloves to aid in the effort Photos of Events at the following links Attached is a Data sheet that is used to tally the trash. We have a summary of this data back to 2010. The Town works closely with the Maryland Coastal Bays program, Ocean City Surf Club and the SurfRiders on all community Clean up programs and events. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.1691528764413125.1073741870.1443146325918038&type=3

  • Planning & Land Use

    Housing and the Comprehensive Plan

    10 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town of Ocean City has a Comprehensive plan with a Housing Element. This plan is currently being updated however the current plan is attached. Chapter 6 deals with Housing. Below are the key recommendation from the plan! Recommendations $ Encourage the private sector to address the seasonal employee housing problem through wage adjustments, employer-provided housing, or a private nonprofit housing corporation. $ Explore additional incentives and or requirements related to the development approval processes that could be established to increase the supply and availability of affordable housing to meet current and future needs of low and moderate income families. $ Large-scale commercial developments should be required to provide on-site housing for employees. $ Perform a detailed analysis of seasonal housing demand by type. $ Continue to encourage a mix of housing types and accommodations able to meet the needs of the whole spectrum of residents and visitors to Ocean City while striving to improve the overall quality of the housing stock. $ Consider incentives to encourage utilization of upper floors of business uses to provide seasonal employee housing. Housing and the Comprehensive Plan Chapter 6-Housing of the Comprehensive Plan adopted the following objectives and recommendations in 2006: • Protect and enhance the quality of residential neighborhoods. ? • Provide Encourage a balanced housing stock with housing opportunities for all residents. • Increase housing inventory to provide affordable, adequate housing for young, working families and the seasonal employee population. • Require site plan and planning review for all major developments to ensure a functional design, quality living environment, and compatibility with overall Town character. • Encourage the private sector to address the seasonal employee housing problem through wage adjustments, employer-provided housing, or a private nonprofit housing corporation. • Explore additional incentives and or requirements related to the development approval processes that could be established to increase the supply and availability of affordable housing to meet current and future needs of low and moderate income families. • Perform a detailed analysis of seasonal housing demand by type. • Continue to encourage a mix of housing types and accommodations able to meet the needs of the whole spectrum of residents and visitors to Ocean City while striving to improve the overall quality of the housing stock. • Consider incentives to encourage utilization of upper floors of business uses to provide seasonal employee housing. • Examine opportunities to construct a seasonal housing community in West Ocean City. Such a facility could utilize the West Ocean City Park & Ride, and funding for such development could be supported by the business community. The Planning and Zoning Commission is currently working on a 5 year update of the Comprehensive Plan to incorporate data from the 2010 Census and evaluate housing trends as a result of the national recession which had the effect limiting new growth and development. Building permit records shown continued property investment in renovation and additions in all housing types over the last 10 years. Rental housing trends are being closely monitored to prevent conflicts as short term rentals and the need for workforce housing pushes into single family neighborhoods. OCDC provides demonstration projects and incentives for affordable workforce housing, including grant assistance with the Royalton Hotel reconstruction which will include housing for 14 employees. Town of Ocean City zoning regulations provide a parking exemption for workforce housing in a mixed use building as additional incentive. Town of Ocean City participates with the Chamber of Commerce and local non-profit organizations to provide annual outreach and training for all involved with the International Student workforce program. Other significant events, benchmarks and ordinance changes: Adopted Coastal Bays Critical Area Program, model energy building code, solid waste transfer to energy/recycling facility, dune vegetation program, expanded Planning Commission review of site plans, implemented Walk Smart pedestrian safety campaign, new floodplain ordinance with increased freeboard requirements, new performing arts center,

    Participation in DHCD Sustainable Communities

    20 Points

    Program Summary:

    The Town of Ocean City recognizes that there is a significant need for reinvestment and revitalization of the Town. They established a sustainable community area and and action plan. The Action plan was created to make Ocean City a desirable tourist location and support the local economy and make ocean City a walk-able, vibrant, sustainable, affordable community to live-in , work-in and visit. Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) The resort town of Ocean City was added to the state’s list of Sustainable Communities in December 2013, joining the statewide initiative to strengthen reinvestment and revitalization in Maryland’s older neighborhoods. Sustainable Communities seek to conserve resources; provide green spaces and parks for recreation and agriculture and conserve historical and cultural resources. They are communities that have developed a comprehensive plan to bring public and private investments together to increase affordable housing opportunities and transit-oriented development. Ocean City - one of Maryland’s recently designated Main Street communities, has been the quintessential tourist destination on the Eastern Shore for more than 100 years. The Town is the home to many iconic leisure activities such as Trimper Amusement rides, the Atlantic Hotel, and the Alaska Stand eatery, all conveniently located on the lively and well-maintained boardwalk. Based upon the successful foundation of the previous Community Legacy designation and revitalization strategies implemented by the Town and the Ocean City Development Corporation, the new Sustainable Community designation aims to continue revitalization of this historic beach community while preparing for future growth in the tourism industry in an environmentally responsible manner. The Sustainable Community Action Plan focuses on efforts to increase workforce housing, modernize existing structures to code, plan for vulnerable sea-level rise areas, promote small business development, and improve the Town’s walkability. The Town of Ocean City’s Planning and Community Development Department, in partnership with the Ocean City Development Corporation, held several public meetings before preparing the Sustainable Community Plan which includes a range of revitalization strategies and projects that prevent or reverse the decline of or disinvestments in the Sustainable Community Areas (Upper and Lower Downtown from Inlet to 15th Street) through improvements in residential, commercial, or other public or private properties and natural resource areas. • Projects have included the development and programming of activities at Sunset Park. • Enhancement of the Transit Center and pedestrian plaza access to the Boardwalk. • Redevelopment of Fat Daddy’s Restaurant with upper floor employee housing for over 50 workers. • Restoration of Tarry-A-While Guest House as OCDC office and seasonal employee housing, along with other properties for a total of 42 workers. • Strategic acquisition and demolition for a mixed use downtown Model Block project. • Construction of Beach Patrol headquarters as anchor property in downtown revitalization. • Expansion of Amusement Overlay District to support boardwalk related business. • St. Louis Avenue reconstruction with improved sidewalks and bike lanes • Boardwalk reconstruction and new restroom/beach concert stage facility Challenges include encouraging business expansion, job creation and providing additional employee housing within a small area that is only active, commercially, about 5 months each year. Adequate parking and transportation solutions take constant management, along with special event programming to support the tourism based economy in a competitive mid-atlantic location.