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Washington County

February 26, 2004|by TARA REILLY

Attorney appointed to agriculture board


A Hagerstown attorney will sit on the Washington County Agricultural Reconciliation Board.

The Washington County Commissioners on Tuesday voted to appoint Marcia D. Watters to the board.

The commissioners appointed four other members to the board on Dec. 9, 2003.

The board was formed when the commissioners adopted the Right to Farm Ordinance on Oct. 28, 2003. The ordinance went into effect Jan. 1.

The board will hear complaints from residents about farming practices and concerns, such as odor and dust, associated with living near farms.

Watters has a background in environmental biology.

EDC seeks change in road fee formula


The Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission on Tuesday asked the County Commissioners to change the formula for the fees for road projects the county collects from developers.

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The EDC proposed that the county use a fee schedule based on the type of employment a new business would offer.

The county charges developers based on each automobile a residential or commercial development is expected to generate during certain hours.

EDC personnel said they think that formula might be detrimental to efforts to attract businesses to the county, a county document states.

The fees come under the county's Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance, which helps ensure roads, schools and other infrastructure are adequate to handle growth.

The County Commissioners plan to discuss the proposal next week.

Detention Center food contract set


Food services at the Washington County Detention Center will be provided by an Illinois contractor for another year.

The Washington County Commissioners on Tuesday voted to renew a contract with Aramark Correctional Services Inc. of Oakbrook Terrace, Ill. The contract is for $416,676.

Detention center Warden Lt. M. Van Evans said the jail has had some operational problems with Aramark and the quality of the food has "gone down considerably," but he thinks those problems can be worked out.

Evans said he recommended renewing the service with some hesitation.

He said low-quality food can affect the well-being of inmates.

"If the quality of the meals deteriorates, the inmates deteriorate considerably," Evans said.

The commissioners voted to switch to the contracted service from in-house food preparation in March 2003.

At the time, Washington County Sheriff's Department officials said contracting for the services would save money because it would free the county from trying to recruit and retain food services staff, among other advantages.

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