Rehoboth Mayor Talks City Plans for 2018
Nicole Edenedo, WRDE: What are the most pressing issues you, the city, hope to accomplish this year?
Paul Kuhns, Mayor: What a number of commissioners have been focused on the past couple of years has been a Capital Improvement Program. Unfortunately, there's been some deferred maintenance over time, whether it's our street or the storm water management. That's really the most pressing issue for us. Not just this year but probably the next five to ten years.
Building Better Business Relationships
With more companies moving out of downtown Rehoboth and onto the highway, Kuhns discusses working on incentives to attract and retain businesses.
NE: There have been businesses that have moved out toward the highway. Jake's seafood, for example, their original location was here in downtown Rehoboth. What are some incentives that the city can implement for businesses to not only stay here but set up shop here?
PK: I think the thing for us to do is work with the landlords, work with main street to provide information on business plans, as well as the city provide its own incentives to get businesses to come into town. I think in the business district, there are probably incentives used to work with landlords, to work with builders, to work with business owners to make it a little bit easier for businesses to come in and set up shop. Maybe spreading the rent out so it's less in the winter. It's kind of a negotiation.
The topic of public safety came up in light of recent terror attacks in the country given that Rehoboth Beach has the potential to attract hundreds of thousands of visitors for events, including the Sea Witch festival.
PK: "We have the Sea Witch festival every year. This year we implemented with the police security measures because of the things that have been going on throughout this country, throughout the world. Very few people notice the heavy security, but it works.
Vision for the Future
NE: You've been in office for a few months now. How are you settling in? How are things going?
PK: I think things are going ok. The first few months were a little bumpy. A lot of people have difficulty with change. My predecessor had been in office for nine terms. One of the big positives I've seen is a number of people that i know didn't vote for me are speaking with me as if we're friends! And we may not agree all the time but we're all focused on the future."
NE: It's great that you've been able to build that camaraderie.
PK: Well, it's building! It's not quite done yet.
NE: Mayor Kuhns, thank you very much.
PK: You're welcome. Thank you.