Hagerstown briefs

June 01, 2005|by GREGORY T. SIMMONS

City officials don't intend to file criticism

There is no intention for city officials to file any criticism of recommendation to approve plans for Washington County Hospital, City Administrator Bruce Zimmerman said Tuesday.

Zimmerman said so during the City Council's closing comments during its Tuesday work session.

The city spent about $300,000 in consulting fees in 2003 and 2004 to dispute claims that Washington County Hospital officials made in documents submitted to the Maryland Health Care Commission, the agency that can approve or deny the plans for the hospital.

Hospital officials have said those disputes resulted in costly delays for the new hospital construction.

Also during the meeting, City Councilman Lewis C. Metzner called on hospital officials to follow through on what he said is the next step, filing an application to receive a zoning special exception. He said city officials should work out a way to provide sewer capacity, which is at a premium.

Council OKs new rules of procedure

The Hagerstown City Council on Tuesday gave the go-ahead to adopt new rules of procedure for city meetings.

While the rules for public meetings likely will not change drastically, the council probably will rearrange the order of some items.

Some shorter items would take place during the beginning of meetings, and the council would open the possibility for more public comment during work sessions.

In efforts to shorten public comments, the council is considering a way to prevent repetitive comments by members of large groups by asking for one or two representatives of that group to speak.

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