Washington County briefs

October 05, 2005|by TARA REILLY

New employees meet commissioners

Two new Washington County employees were introduced to the County Commissioners on Tuesday.

Joseph H. Charles is a buyer in the Purchasing Department. Charles previously worked for the county, but left in 1996 to move to Costa Rica.

John W. Swauger is the stormwater management/utility coordinator in the Engineering Department.

County to participate in housing program

Washington County will participate in a state program that will help households obtain financial assistance to address health and safety issues to meet local building codes.

The County Commissioners on Tuesday approved the submission of a Letter of Intent to the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development indicating participation in the Maryland Housing Rehabilitation Program.


The Washington County Community Action Council will serve as the local administrator of the program.

The state has proposed giving the county $53,112 for the program, according to information included with the commissioners' agenda packet.

Commissioners of gaming honored

Three retiring Washington County Gaming Commission members received certificates for their service Tuesday from the County Commissioners.

The commissioners presented certificates of merit to Terry Reiber, John Doarnberger and Kim Kidd.

Reiber served on the Gaming Commission since September 2001 and was chairman from Oct. 1, 2004, to Sept. 30.

Doarnberger has been on the Gaming Commission since September 2003. Kidd served from March 2001 to February 2005.

Request for rezoning meets approval

The Washington County Commissioners on Tuesday approved a rezoning request for property on the southeast corner of the intersection of U.S. 40 and Mount Aetna Road.

Heidi Mackley applied for the rezoning to change the 1.31-acre property from Residential Urban to a Business Local zoning classification.

The county's zoning ordinance states the purpose of the Business Local district is "to provide for logical locations where the retail services needed by a neighborhood population can be made available and can be served with adequate water and/or sewerage service meeting Health Department standards."

Cowden named to Gaming Commission

A vacant seat on the Washington County Gaming Commission will be filled by William Cowden.

The County Commissioners on Tuesday appointed Cowden to the post. He replaces Terry Reiber, whose term expired Sept. 30.

Kudos given for tank removal

Four Washington County Department of Water Quality employees were recognized Tuesday for their efforts to remove an abandoned tank from Antietam Creek.

The County Commissioners presented certificates of merit to Mike Marker, Shane French, Dennis Engle and Bill Blair.

The department received a letter in August from the Maryland Department of the Environment expressing thanks for removing the tank.

"Removal of the tank eliminates an eyesore and the potential for damages to downstream structures," the letter states.

Water Quality Director Greg Murray said how the tank got in the creek was unknown, as were the people responsible for abandoning the tank.

The tank had been there for about two years, officials said.

Legislative proposals being reviewed

The Washington County Commissioners are reviewing several legislative proposals they might submit to the local delegation to the Maryland General Assembly for the upcoming session.

The proposals include changing the county's excise tax legislation so the commissioners could grant individual nonresidential exemptions from the tax; legislation that would allow the county's sheriff to appoint more fire police, who are considered special sheriff's deputies in certain areas; and two proposals from the State's Attorney's Office. One proposal would make child abuse a "crime of violence" and the other would increase the penalty for a fourth-degree sexual offense, according to information provided by the county.

The proposals will be taken to a public hearing, which the commissioners expect to hold in the next several weeks.

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