Williamsport briefs

December 15, 2004

Council rejects student's request

WILLIAMSPORT - The Williamsport Town Council on Monday voted 3-0 to reject an 11th-grader's request to have the town help pay for her student ambassador trip.

Allyson Parks, a junior at Williamsport High School, wrote to the town that she was accepted in the People to People Student Ambassador Program.

The 20-day trip to England and France next summer will cost $4,895, Parks wrote.

"The objective of the program is to promote international understanding while building leadership skills among America's youth," her letter says.

Mayor John W. Slayman gave the town council a few minutes to read the letter, then asked, "What's your pleasure?" For several seconds, no one said anything.

Councilwoman Gloria J. Bitner asked if there is money in the budget to fund the request.

Slayman said there was not because, to be included, requests need to be made before the budget is approved.

Slayman's request for a motion, for or against the funding request, was met with several more seconds of silence.


Finally, Bitner made a motion to reject it.

Bitner, Councilman Earle E. Pereschuk Sr. and Councilman James G. McCleaf II voted in favor of the motion.

Assistant Mayor Walter W. Tracy Jr. and Councilman Monty R. Jones abstained from the vote.

Councilwoman Roxann L. Long was absent from the meeting.

Asked after the meeting about the vote, Town Attorney Edward Kuczynski said three votes were enough to pass the motion because three was a majority out of five voting members present.

Tracy and the town's five council members may vote at meetings. Slayman only may vote to break a tie.

Student enrollment levels are addressed

WILLIAMSPORT - Brent Bailey of the Washington County Board of Education's Facilities and Enrollment Advisory Committee told the Williamsport Town Council on Monday about the committee's work.

He said the committee monitors student enrollment levels because of Washington County development fees that kick in when a school's capacity reaches 85 percent.

Three of the five public schools that serve the Williamsport area are at 85 percent capacity or greater, Bailey said.

Individual municipalities can adopt their own policies on development fees, he said.

Bailey said the Town of Boonsboro doesn't have a policy and talked about annexing land.

However, Assistant Mayor Walter W. Tracy Jr. said Williamsport has little chance of annexing land.

He said the town might talk about a policy and "see where it goes," but it might be of little use.

"It may be a short meeting," Bailey agreed.

Lights display draws positive comments

WILLIAMSPORT - A few Williamsport Town Council members on Monday complimented town employees for the Christmas lights display at Byron Memorial Park.

Councilwoman Gloria J. Bitner said the display was beautiful and her pastor said good things about it at church.

Councilman Monty R. Jones said it was "a proud moment" to be at this month's ceremony when the lights were turned on.

"It's kind of like small-town America at its best," he said.

According to Slayman, a counter registered 6,718 vehicles visiting the park from Dec. 6 through 12.

Council meets in executive session

WILLIAMSPORT - The Williamsport Town Council went into executive session Monday to discuss a personnel matter and to get advice from Town Attorney Edward Kuczynski.

After the executive session, Clerk/Treasurer Bonnie J. Errico said the council didn't take any actions or make any motions.

She said the council talked about some benefits it might have to consider in the future.

In Maryland, public bodies must, by law, conduct business openly, but they are allowed - although not required - to meet privately to discuss certain topics.

Boy Scouts sit in on Council meeting

WILLIAMSPORT - Boy Scouts and chaperones from two local troops sat in the audience for Monday's Williamsport Town Council meeting.

Some of the Scouts said they are working on their Citizenship in the Community merit badges.

Mayor John W. Slayman thanked them for attending.

Sheriff's deputies respond to 292 calls

WILLIAMSPORT - The Washington County Sheriff's Department's resident deputies responded to 292 complaints in Williamsport in November, according to a report presented to the town council on Monday.

Deputies arrested five adults and seven juveniles.

They issued eight speeding tickets, two parking citations and 36 other citations, as well as 35 warnings.

They charged three people with driving while intoxicated or driving under the influence.

The report says that deputies issues seven juvenile tobacco citations and filled out 19 vehicle salvage reports.

One traffic stop resulted in $1,280 in citations, the report says.

"That guy had the book thrown at him," Mayor John W. Slayman said.

Christmas decoration winners announced

WILLIAMSPORT - Mayor John W. Slayman on Monday announced the winners of the annual Christmas decorating contest results.

The winners, addresses and prizes are:

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