Rehoboth Beach

REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) - Voters in the city of Rehoboth Beach have elected in a referendum to support restrictions on housing development imposed earlier this year.

The city said that Saturday's balloting concluded with 785 votes, or 53 percent, in favor of the restrictions, compared to 697 votes, or 47 percent, opposed.

Rehoboth's board of commissioners passed an ordinance in July making it harder to build large homes and requiring more green space on front yards.

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A bank robbery in Rehoboth Beach has Delaware State Police looking for a female suspect.

Officials told WBOC that it occurred just after 1 p.m. yesterday afternoon at the TD Bank on Midway Outlet Drive.

The suspect is described as a white female around 5-feet 3-inches to 5-feet 6-inches tall.

She reportedly walked into the bank and demanded the clerk give her an undisclosed amount of money.

She then fled.

No one at the scene was injured.

Don Rush

The battle over a zoning ordinance that limits the size of new houses is heating up in Rehoboth Beach.

There’s a new group called the Rehoboth Neighbors United which wants voters to approve the new regulations in November 7th’s referendum.

Susan Gay, one of the group’s organizers told WBOC that this is “a turning point” for the city.

She expressed particular concern about the environmental impact of these houses – especially the loss of trees.

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There’s a rebellion brewing in Rehoboth Beach.

Hundreds are angered by a law that will make it harder for them to build large houses.

And they have handed in a petition to force the town commissioners to take another vote.

They must have gathered 40 percent of the electorate in order to force the vote.

That will force suspension of the ordinance until its reconsideration.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that if there is not a reversal residents vow to force a referendum.

Dogfish Head taps

Dogfish Heads renovation plans in Rehoboth Beach have gotten unanimous approval by the board of commissioners.

The brewpub is some two decades old and hopes to make its first upgrades since it opened the building.

Commissioner Stan Mills told the Daily Times that he wanted Dogfish Head to stay in town.

But the approval came after a vigorous discussion over whether the brewpub’s application was in compliance with the city zoning code.

The overall plan includes an outdoor courtyard and a major venue for live concerts.

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More than 350 swimmers were rescued along the coastline from Bethany Beach and Rehoboth Beach to Ocean City.

Rehoboth Beach Patrol Captain Kent Buckson told the Salisbury Daily Times that there were more than 100 rescues on Sunday alone.

He said it was the most dangerous three to four day period he has seen.

Much of the problem occurred because of the rip currents and the volume of waves that hit the coast.

Buckson told the paper this was “a recipe for disaster” and he praised his crew for handling the conditions so well.

All Saints Websiite

Member of the All Saints Episcopal Church in Rehoboth Beach got an unwelcome flyer on their windshields this past Sunday.

The literature blasted the church for accepting gays and lesbians into their congregation as well as allowing women to hold church leadership positions.

Rector Max Wolf told WBOC that the flyers were not only disturbing to the church’s gay and lesbian members but to their families and friends as well.

The literature called homosexuality a “shameless act” and called women “emotional basket cases”.

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A lawsuit in Rehoboth Beach gives new meaning to the phrase, “Vote early and vote often.”

Resident Jackie Nichols has filed a federal lawsuit that says the ability of corporation owners to cast multiple votes in a referendum violates the Delaware and U.S. constitutions.

The multiple voting provision only applies to referenda not general municipal elections.

Wilmington News Journal reports that city staff also said that residents who own Rehoboth based businesses can also cast multiple votes.

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A swimmer was rescued from an unguarded area near Rehoboth and Dewey Beach.

The Delaware’s Natural Resources Police with the help of a Delaware state police helicopter located the swimmer and took him to safety.

The swimmer had drifted a half mile from the shore line to the southern Dewey Beach.

The state police told WBOC that the outgoing tide along with a strong south wind pushed the swimmer from the shoreline.

State officials said that the waters along the coast line are strong with tidal or rip currents that can pull a swimmer out to sea. 

Don Rush

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery may be expanding its restaurant in Rehoboth Beach after all.

A Rehoboth Beach land-use board reversed its rejection of the plan that now could pave the way for an expanded brewpub on Rehoboth Avenue.

Sam and Mariah Calogione who own Dogfish argued that the expanded restaurant would benefit other businesses and employ more than a hundred people.

The current Dogfish restaurant would be expanded from around 82-hundred square feet to just over 92-hundred square feet.

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Rehoboth Beach is set to impose restrictions on vacation-home renter’s use of backyard pools today.

Under the ordinance beginning in 2018 people who rent vacation homes would not be allowed to use any pool or hot tub on the property.

Those pools and tubs would have to be covered by the owner.

But state Representative Ruth Briggs King says that she is concerned the town is overreaching their authority.

And, she says the General Assembly may look at approving some legislation to limit the resort actions.

REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) - State police say a man was robbed as he walked toward a bus stop near Rehoboth Mall in Rehoboth Beach.

Police say the robbery occurred on Saturday morning. Police say the 32-year-old male victim was walking along Airport Road when a man grabbed him from behind.

Police say another man then approached and pointed a gun at the victim. Both went through the man's pockets and took cash.

Police say the armed man fled on foot, while the other man left in a vehicle.

The victim wasn't injured. Police have not identified any suspects.

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The Rehoboth Beach Board of Commissioners plan to hold a vote on four measures to clamp down on vacation rentals including pool use by renters.

The vote set for June 19th would include a ban on renters from using pools at their vacation rentals by 2018.

In addition, another would put tighter limits on home size while a third would require more off-street parking.

Finally, there were would be a pool licensing system in addition to the ban.

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If you’re vacationing in Rehoboth Beach and looking forward to using the pool at your rental house that could come to an end in the near future.

The resort’s board of commissioners is looking at denying vacationers the right to use the pools of rental properties.

The Mayor and other city officials are concerned that the larger homes being built in the resort is causing too much noise and disruption in the residential areas.

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Rehoboth Beach has a new noise ordinance.

But some are not happy with the law.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that there has been a series of emails from over 30 people that have been sent to city officials and the media.

They claim the resort’s gay community is being targeted.

In addition, he paper reports that the violations for open containers and other minor offenses were clustered around the areas that attract mostly gay residents and visitors.

There was one noise citation at a rental home over the Memorial Day weekend.

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Rehoboth Beach has a new noise ordinance that defines what it is and how loud it can be.

The town has established – what is called – a plainly audible standard in residential areas.

WBOC reports that this is a method that is used to identify a noise disturbance.

This is aside from simply measuring the number of decibels.

The measure is an effort to bring down the number of late night disturbances that involve rental units of more than 20 to 30 people

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More than three thousand people  took the plunge into the cold Atlantic Ocean water on Sunday in Rehoboth Beach.

And they raised $780-thousand for the Special Olympics Delaware as part of the Lewes Polar Bear Plunge.  

3,325 people jumped into 37 degree water, according to organizers.

The money will help 37-hundred children and adults with intellectual disabilities.

The Special Olympics Delaware will provide sports training, athletic competition and especially an opportunity to socialize.

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Most of the overtime for resort towns along the Delmarva coastline goes to public works, wastewater and the police.

Wilmington News Journal reports that the expenditures can get as high as $13-thousand or the equivalent of an extra day of work.

But city officials say providing overtime is easier and more efficient than hiring an extra person part-time.

Sharon Lynn, city manager of Rehoboth Beach, told the Delmarva Media Group that it means a quicker response and a quicker process than hiring someone.

human right campaign

The Delaware towns of Dover, Rehoboth Beach and Newark have been found to be above average for their inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.  

That’s according to a report released by the Washington-based Human Right Campaign, a major national gay rights group.

Meanwhile, in their 2014 Municipal Equality Index Wilmington and Middletown fell below the national average.

Overall, Delaware which made same-sex marriage legal last year scored 57 overall on a one hundred point scale.

The Avenue website

The owners of the Avenue Inn and Spa in downtown Rehoboth Beach are seeking to iron out objections to its plans to add 8-thousand square feet that will include 28 new rooms as well as a restaurant and retail space.

At issue is a second stairwell tower.

The current zoning code only allows one stairwell tower over 42 feet per building.

In addition, the code also requires commercial buildings of a certain height to be pushed back from the sidewalk at a 30 degree angle.

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REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) - Rehoboth Beach is preparing to add two public charging stations for electric vehicles under a one-year trial.

The Wilmington News Journal reports the Rehoboth Board of Commissioners voted in August to accept a state grant that would fund two charging stations downtown. The grant is part of the "Charging Up Delaware" initiative aimed at placing charging stations throughout the state.

Don Rush

Lewes is looking at joining a number of coastal resorts in dramatically expanding its restrictions on smoking.

At a September session Council member Bonnie Osler proposed that a smoking ban should be expanded from the city parks to include restrooms and guard beaches.

She noted that Rehoboth had recently limited smoking to certain designated locations along the beach.

Action on the proposal is not expected until the council’s October 6th meeting.

In August the Ocean City Town Council voted to limit smoking to designated areas.


Don Rush

REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) - Free parking has returned to Delaware's beach towns as summer comes to a close, but city officials say parking revenue was generally up this year.

Parking revenue was up in Rehoboth Beach, Lewes and Bethany Beach but was down in Dewey Beach.

In Rehoboth, more people were using the Parkmobile smartphone app to pay for parking. City manager Sharon Lynn says the number of transactions increased 26 percent this year. The city also saw a 2 percent increase in revenue from parking meters.

Don Rush

REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) - Rehoboth Beach residents, workers and business owners can now sign up to get alerts about fires, severe weather and other emergencies.

City Manager Sharon Lynn found and launched the system, called CodeRED. She tells The Salisbury Daily Times that it will cost $2,750 a year.

Residents can sign up for alerts at

REHOBOTH BEACH, Del. (AP) - Two woman say they were attacked after telling a group of men to stop videotaping them.

Police say the women ages 33 and 35 were on the beach near Wilmington Avenue early Sunday about 12:30 a.m. That's when they noticed a group of six or seven men in their early 20s. One of the men appeared to be recording the women on his phone.

When the women asked him to stop, police say one of the men assaulted the women. They were beaten in the head and face.

Rehoboth Beach came in fourth for the best stop to take your family on the East Coast by the ABC Travel Guide.

Mathew Rosenberger, founder of ABC Travel Guide, hailed the town’s beaches, boardwalk and restaurants.

In addition, noted that Dogfish Head Brewpub had created concoctions for those under the age of 21.

He said he also noticed that it was a town easy to get around in on a bicycle.

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Rehoboth Beach Commissioners are mulling over whether to install a pair of charging stations for electric cars in the downtown area.

It’s part of a statewide plan by the Delaware Department of natural Resources and Environmental Control and the University of Delaware.

University researchers have proposed the stations that could charge a car in less than two hours.

$80-thousand has been provided in state funds for the program to place these sustainable energy sources in cities.

Rehoboth Beach is gearing up to enforce its no smoking ban with 170 signs to be place along the Boardwalk and in city parks.

In addition, there will be certain locations along the beach where smoking will be allowed.

Commissioner Stan Mills told the Wilmington News Journal that he expected the effort will cost $31-thousand with nearly half paid for by the state of Delaware.

There will also be a web page where visitors can find out where the smoking and non-smoking areas are with a brief explanation of the decision to limit smoking in the resort.

Tanger Outlets

If you’re shopping in the Rehoboth Beach area this summer you might run into some congestion around the Tanger Outlet Midway Center where renovations are now in their third month and are expected to continue on through the summer.

The project is expected to be completed within a seven month period.

Amy Norgate, the center’s general manager told WBOC, that there will be a raised pedestrian walkway across the parking lot and believes when finished it will bring in more customers.

There will be no more smoking on the boardwalk or bandstand, or city parks in Rehoboth Beach beginning May 15th.

In addition, smoking with be limited to designated areas on the beach.

The Rehoboth Beach Commissioners and mayor voted for the ban during a special Monday meeting.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that Commissioner Stan Mills said the ban was aimed at reducing litter, pollution and health risks.

The ban will not include e-cigarettes.