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Highlights of City Address

March 06, 2002

Here are some of the highlights from Tuesday morning's State of the City Address:

- Mayor William M. Breichner announced the city had another sponsor for Hagerstown's Fairgrounds Park. Synagro donated $8,000 toward a swing set. Synagro, formerly known as Wheelabrator, is the contracted operator of the city's pellet plant.

- The city will begin a new event this year. There will be country music and a large fireworks display at Fairgrounds Park on July 4.

- Breichner said the City Council is considering providing additional tax incentives to promote the improvement of older properties in designated areas. The idea is to freeze the current real estate tax assessment for a time to encourage property owners to invest and improve their property values.

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The city also will be using a $676,000 Community Legacy state grant to promote homeownership and neighborhood improvements.

- Breichner asked attendees to go to a Hagerstown Suns game this season so they can see the new ownership's energy and how important it is to keep minor league baseball here.

- The mayor said presentations are expected to be made to the council and Washington County Commissioners within the next two months concerning a proposal to revise the tax differential formula.

The tax differential, or setoff, represents the amount of money the county does not have to spend on things such as police or parks for various municipalities, resulting in those cities getting money back.

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