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Hancock Town Council briefs

August 15, 2002|by TARA REILLY

Close suggests charging per bag for trash service



Hancock Town Manager Lou Close asked the Town Council Wednesday night to consider a policy that would allow town residents to pay per bag for trash service.

Close said residents with small amounts of garbage pay the same rates as those with several bags.

He said the town could sell stickers to put on the bags or sell bags with the town's name on them. He said the town should study rates of other towns with similar policies.

Close said the per bag charge would be helpful to residents if the Washington County Commissioners decide to raise discount rates at the Forty West Landfill.

"It's something to think about, and it's going to get worse," Close said. "Every year they talk about raising fees at the landfill."

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"We do need to be proactive in this," Hancock Mayor Daniel Murphy said.

Last month the County Commissioners said they were considering raising the discount landfill rates for municipalities and high-volume dumpers to $36 a ton, up from $33.

The fee hike might generate an additional $150,000 a year, county officials have said.




Police chief: town hit by thefts, break-ins



Hancock Police Chief Donald Gossage said Wednesday night the police department is working with the Maryland State Police and the Pennsylvania State Police on a series of thefts and business break-ins in Hancock and surrounding areas.

Gossage said the criminal activity included car thefts and theft from cars and soda machines. He said some businesses have been broken into three or four times in the last four weeks.

Two cars were stolen in Hancock, including a vehicle belonging to the Tri-State Re-use Center that was supposed to be used in the town's National Night Out activities.

But Gossage says the crime spree has been worse in Pennsylvania.

"It's hitting (Pennsylvania) more than it's hitting us right now," Gossage said.

He said police encourage residents to make sure their cars and homes are locked.

The Hancock Police Department has spent about 40 hours investigating the crimes in the last week, Gossage said. He said he hopes to have charges filed by the end of this week.

Town to explore forming sister city relationship

The Hancock Town Council is considering becoming a sister city with Mt. Magnet, Australia, town officials said Wednesday night.

The town received an e-mail from Peter Webster, CEO for the Shire of Mt. Magnet in western Australia on July 16, asking town officials if they would be interested in the relationship.

Mt. Magnet is a gold mining town north of Perth.

Webster stated in the e-mail that the town was started in 1890 and has a population of about 1,000 people.

"We're all about extending our creativity," Hancock Mayor Daniel A. Murphy said. "We may have bicyclers from Perth here, you never know."

The Town Council directed Councilman Greg Yost to correspond with Webster and obtain more information.




Lou Close finishes stint as Hancock's town manager



Lou Close had his last meeting as Hancock's town manager Wednesday night.

Close resigned on June 19. His last day is Aug. 31. Close has said he resigned because he wanted to relax and spend time with his wife and family.

Close, 66, has lived in Hancock for 27 years. He was elected to the Town Council in 1991 and became town manager in June 1994. He served in the U.S. Air Force for 20 years, becoming a first sergeant. He owned the Triangle restaurant in Hancock for 13 years.




Police department has 98 calls for service in June



The Hancock Police Department had 98 calls for service in June, Chief Donald Gossage said Wednesday night.

The town also had seven criminal offenses - one assault and six thefts - issued 27 citations and 146 parking tickets and had four arrests. Three adults and one juvenile were arrested, Gossage said.

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