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Last-ditch bid underway to save Ritchie legislation

April 06, 1997

By GUY FLETCHER

Staff Writer

ANNAPOLIS - Lawmakers and local business leaders scrambled Saturday to make a last-ditch attempt to save legislation they consider crucial to he redevelopment of Fort Ritchie into a combination technology park and corporate training center.

"We're not going to give in just yet," said Del. John P. Donoghue, D-Washington, who chairs the county delegation in the Maryland General Assembly.

He and other legislators have arranged for a meeting today between supporters of legislation to create the PenMar Development Corp. and at least one of the legislative leaders standing in its path.

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"We're going to try one more time," said William J. Reuter, president of Farmers & Merchants Bank and Trust and chairman of the Fort Ritchie's Local Redevelopment Authority.

His group is hoping to turn the 638-acre fort, which is scheduled to be closed by the Army on Oct. 1, 1998, into 410,000 square feet of new office, hotel and industrial laboratory space. Consultants have estimated that the base, which employed about 2,000 military and civilian workers in the past, eventually could employ as many as 2,200 people.

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