VENTNOR — The Board of Commissioners honored Public Works Superintendent Dave Smith for his 46 years of service at its meeting March 8. Smith will retire from his position April 1.

“He was a compassionate, empathetic supervisor to all his staff," Mayor Beth Holtzman said. "When Dave Smith leaves Ventnor as superintendent of public works, we lose an asset. We lose 46 years of knowledge, and that cannot have a price on it.” 

Smith, who started working for the city Dec. 7, 1971, became assistant superintendent of public works in 1983 and was promoted to superintendent a year later.

He was promoted to principal public works manager in 1997. In 2009, he was certified as the city’s recycling coordinator. He is retiring with a salary of $127,426.38.

Commissioner of Public Works Lance Landgraf said Smith’s commitment to the department has shown the importance of a dedicated superintendent. Landgraf said that earlier this year Smith and his staff worked around the clock for three days to combat a winter storm.

Outgoing City Manager Ed Stinson has been hired as both Ventnor’s superintendent of public works and city engineer. Stinson will begin this new position March 19, before Smith’s retirement. His salary will be $150,000.

In other business, the board introduced an ordinance amending the developmental regulations of the city’s code to allow duplexes to be demolished and rebuilt.

It also introduced an ordinance that will amend the flood hazard area chapter of the city’s code to create a development permit that will cost $50.

The commissioners passed a resolution authorizing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to conduct a feasibility study to determine the stability of the bulkhead that spans the bay from Jackson to Surrey avenues.

Jim Rutala, who was appointed by the city for planning and grant assistance, had discussed the study with the commissioners during their workshop meeting Feb. 22.

“The fact that so many homes have been damaged in that area makes it rise to a level where it is cost-beneficial to look at this property,” Rutala said.

The city will execute a feasibility cost-sharing agreement, which would allow it to share with the federal government half the cost of the study above the first $100,000.

According to the resolution, it is estimated the study will cost the city about $300,000.

The commissioners also passed a resolution authorizing the city to use competitive contracting to implement a bike-share program in the city. The program would allow people to rent a bike for a desired amount of time at one location and then drop the bike off at another station in the city.

The next commissioners meeting is 5:30 p.m. March 22.

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