Washington County briefs

December 07, 2005|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

County approves buying classrooms

A plan to buy 10 portable classrooms for $1.1 million was approved Tuesday by the Washington County Commissioners.

The Washington County Board of Education is ordering the classrooms now so they'll be ready for fiscal year 2007.

The School Board plans to buy 10 more portable classrooms the following year, Chief Operating Officer William Blum said.

Commissioner John C. Munson asked what happens to portable classrooms when they're no longer needed.

They might go to "less fortunate" school districts, although that rarely happens, Blum said.

County approves Smithsburg request

The town of Smithsburg will be allowed to designate its downtown as a "redevelopment area."

Commercial uses within the area will be exempt from excise taxes.

The Washington County Commissioners voted 3-0 in favor of Smithsburg's request.

Commissioners Vice President William J. Wivell abstained from the vote because he owns property in the area.

A memo on the request says Commissioners President Gregory I. Snook invited the county's municipalities in August to make proposals for their own redevelopment areas.


John Schnebly, the vice chair of the Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission and chair of its Intragovernmental Committee, told the commissioners that Funkstown Assistant Mayor Paul N. Crampton Jr. made a request.

Schnebly said he asked Crampton how much of Funkstown he wanted to include in a redevelopment area.

"He said all of it," Schnebly reported, smiling. "I said I'll float that trial balloon" to the commissioners.

"Float it back," Commissioner James F. Kercheval said.

Schnebly agreed that allowing Funkstown such wide latitude might open the commissioners to similar requests from other towns.

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