Today In Salisbury’s History: Tuesday, Dec, 14, 1982

Tuesday, Dec, 14, 1982 —

  • Salisbury was still digging out from a weekend snowstorm that dumped between 5 and 7 inches on the city. Wicomico County Engineer Kirk Banks called the snowfall “the worst early-season storm in as long as we can remember.” The wet snow that began falling Sunday night refroze on Monday as temperatures plunged to between 15 and 20 degrees. Public schools are not likely to reopen until Thursday.
  • The Salisbury City Council has introduced an ordinance to extend the Downtown Plaza tax district east down Main Street to Route 13. The generated tax dollars would be used to plant trees and add new sidewalks, to create a more pedestrian-friendly thoroughfare. Unlike the Plaza itself, there would be no effect on car traffic.
  • A special General Assembly committee has recommended the state build a 1,000 bed prison, either in Salisbury or somewhere in Wicomico County. The panel said Wicomico, Dorchester, Caroline and Somerset counties met the economic a workforce criteria needed for a new prison facility. Western Maryland was rejected as a possible site, due to its rugged terrain and the presence of two large state facilities there already. State Sen. Victor L. Crawford, the committee’s chairman, said: “We don’t want it too far south toward the Virginia line — that is too far away from needed facilities, such as a hospital. So that would leave Salisbury or somewhere in Wicomico County as the best location.”
  • Salisbury Councilman Sam Seidel had a heated exchange at Monday night’s meeting with Council President Norm Conway and City Executive Secretary J. Patrick Fennell. Questioning details of a loan program that would extend city-backed monies for renovation projects in revitalization areas, Seidel said the program was being initiated without sufficient security or public notice. He said he had been purposely left out of the discussion because he questioned Fennell’s refusal to state which banks would be working with the city. Fennell replied that he resented that accusation and Conway moved to conduct further discussion in an executive session. Lawyer K. King Burnett and architect John Van Fossen have asked for a $30,000 loan to renovate  building they own on West Market and Camden streets; Herman Perdue is seeking $50,000 for a building he owns on the Downtown Plaza and William J. Ahtes is seeking $110,000 for improvements to the Gunby Galleria project.
  • “Datum,” the Salisbury Fire Department’s fire boat, has been decorated for the Christmas season. Deputy Fire Chief Bill Higgins said the effort is designed to raise public awareness that the fireboat can be used to help protect riverfront homes, as well as protect the 40 million gallons of petroleum carried up the river each year. The Datum, with twinkling lights, will be cruising the river most evenings until Christmas. The city purchased the boat for $30,000 in 1973.
  • Matt Hawes, a two-time All-American wrestler from Springfield, Mass., College is the new wrestling coach at Salisbury State College. Hawes has big shoes to fill: Coach Mike McGlinchey has led the program for the last 11 years and his teams have never posted a losing season. McGlinchey agreed last year to become the Sea Gulls new football coach and decided to step down from the program he created. McGlinchey’s wrestling team was 8-2 last year and a perfect 10-0 the year prior.
  • In Church League basketball, Parkway Church of God clobbered St. Francis De Sales, 80-67. Ronnie Wainright scored 18 points, and Scott Erving and Leroy Lutz each sank 12 points. Dickie Smith of St. Francis de Sales led all scorers with 27 points.
  • Salisbury City Police were looking for a woman last seen driving a late-model gray Chevrolet who filled up her car Tuesday and drove away without paying. Police said the incident occurred at about 8:20 a.m. Tuesday at Banks Market on Mount Hermon Road. The customer pumped 18.2 gallons — or $20.45 worth of gas — then drove off.

Greg Bassett is editor and general manager of Salisbury Independent. Reach him at gbassett@newszap.com

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