Hagerstown briefs

October 06, 2004|by GREGORY T. SIMMONS

Council praises commission's letter

The Maryland Health Care Commission received praise during the Hagerstown City Council's Tuesday work session for a recent letter written to Washington County Hospital officials.

The letter, dated Sept. 24, requests several pieces of information and clarification of items in a crucial application for approval of the hospital move. Hospital officials want to move the hospital from East Antietam Street to a site near Robinwood Drive, with plans for construction beginning early next year.

"Finally, the questions are being asked. ... The folks that are on the commission are doing their jobs," Councilman Lewis C. Metzner said.

Councilwoman Penny M. Nigh raised a related question about the chairman of the Hagerstown-Washington County Chamber of Commerce.

The Chamber on Monday threw its support behind the hospital's plans to move. Edward Lough, the Chamber's chairman, also is a co-founder of the Hagerstown-Washington County Community Healthcare Coalition, formed this summer to support the hospital move.


"I'd love to know how many organizations (Lough) belongs to," Nigh said.

Metzner says city should help stadium

During a presentation on proposals for a new stadium at North Hagerstown High School, one member of the Hagerstown City Council said he would support spending city money on the project.

"I personally would like to see some money put in toward (the project)," Councilman Lewis C. Metzner said during Tuesday's council work session. He said it was "appropriate" for the city to do so.

North High Principal Robert "Bo" Myers said a committee has begun collecting money in hopes of raising $2.3 million for the stadium project, which officials expect to be complete in 2006.

North High has used School Stadium at South Hagerstown High School for more than 40 years because it does not have a stadium of its own.

The council did not take any official action on the project.

Director plans Telework expansion

The city's recently hired director of the Hagerstown Telework Center said Tuesday he plans to expand the center's operations.

Telework Center Director Michael Pellegrino began work on Aug. 7.

During the Hagerstown City Council's Tuesday work session, Pellegrino said he would like to improve both programs under his direction, the telework center and the business and training center, both of which are housed at 14 N. Potomac St. in the Elizabeth Hager Center.

The telework center provides space where federal government workers can do their jobs away from the office. The training center is geared toward helping unemployed and underemployed workers improve their computer skills.

Pellegrino said the telework center is only filled to about half its capacity and there is room for improvement. He said one possibility is that the center could be used by federal and local governments for emergency operations. He said he also hoped to invite more local businesses to use the training center.

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