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Campground wants to pay sewer fees over 5 years

January 20, 2006|by TARA REILLY

tarar@herald-mail.com

WASHINGTON COUNTY - Yogi Bear's Jellystone Park has asked Washington County to spread over five years $132,600 in sewer connection fees the campground is required to pay for a planned expansion.

The County Commissioners discussed the request Tuesday, but delayed a decision.

"I support the payment ... but five years is too long to get this back," Commissioners President Gregory I. Snook said.

Snook said he would like the money to be paid over two or three years.

Commissioner John C. Munson made a motion to approve a three-year payment schedule, but the motion failed for lack of a second.

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Snook said the commissioners would need more time to consider the request.

Commissioners Vice President William J. Wivell said the county would have to front the sewer connection fees, probably by shifting general fund dollars to the Department of Water Quality's budget.

Wivell said he feared it would receive similar requests should the commissioners approve the campground's proposal.

He wants the commissioners to consider a policy addressing such requests.

Commissioner Doris J. Nipps said tourism was a main industry in the county, and that the commissioners should take that into consideration when deciding on Jellystone's request.

The campground, near Williamsport, is building a new pump station and force main for approximately $897,000 to connect to the county's sewer system as part of its expansion.

The expansion includes a new water park.

The pump station and piping also would support future development by Rehoboth United Methodist Church, which has proposed building a new church and complex at the southwest corner of Md. 68 (Lappans Road) and Md. 632 (Downsville Pike) near Williamsport.

Timothy R. Troxell, executive director of the Hagerstown-Washington County Economic Development Commission, said the campground's expansion will result in 32 new jobs, some of which will be full time.

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