Hagerstown briefs

November 29, 2006|by ANDREW SCHOTZ

Council approves equipment expenditures

A street sweeper, treatment chemicals and a backhoe loader were part of a group of items for which expenditures were approved by the Hagerstown City Council on Tuesday.

The council unanimously approved the group of expenses in what is known as a "consent agenda."

They included:

· $184,361 to Atlantic Machinery of Silver Spring, Md., for a street sweeper to replace a current sweeper

· $734,418 through a joint agreement with Washington County for water and wastewater treatment chemicals

· $74,199 to Standard Equipment Co. of Frederick, Md., for a John Deere backhoe loader, replacing an excavator in the Water and Sewer Department

· $18,240, through a state bid price, to Criswell Chevrolet in Gaithersburg, Md., for a 2007 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck with towing and snowplow packages. It will replace a 1992 pickup truck in the Parks and Recreation Department.


· $9,500 for a Washington County Arts Council free concert series in 2007, up from $9,000

Vacant building proposals revisited

A proposal to license and inspect vacant buildings returned to the Hagerstown City Council on Tuesday.

The latest version of the plan would require property owners to get licenses and inspections from the city.

A residential ordinance would apply to single and multiunit buildings that have been vacant for 12 months straight or determined by the city to be uninhabitable for more than 30 days.

A separate ordinance would apply to commercial buildings with one or more vacant street-level spaces that have not been used commercially for at least six straight months.

It also would cover commercial structures that are occupied at street level, but in which at least 50 percent of the upper-level spaces have been vacant for at least six straight months.

The annual residential license fee would be $100. The annual commercial license fee would range from $250 to $1,000, depending on how long the building has been vacant.

The council unanimously approved an introduction of the commercial ordinance.

The introduction of the residential ordinance passed 4-1. Councilwoman Kelly S. Cromer voted against it.

Cromer objected to an earlier version of the proposal in August.

Aleshire praised

Kristin B. Aleshire left the Hagerstown City Council on Tuesday to praise and thanks.

"You'll be sorely missed, but not forgotten," Councilwoman Kelly S. Cromer said.

Councilman Lewis C. Metzner said it was "a pleasure" to serve with Aleshire.

Councilwoman Alesia D. Parson-McBean called Aleshire "a wealth of knowledge" and thanked him for helping her learn more about city business.

Aleshire, who was elected to the council in 2001 and re-elected in 2005, ran for Washington County commissioner in the Nov. 7 general election and won. He will be sworn in Dec. 5.

Aleshire said he looks forward to representing many "municipal voices" as a county commissioner. He also thanked voters "for picking a kid who was 25 and ran on a couple of dollars" in 2001.

In between, he rattled off dozens of accomplishments in the city during his time on the council, including crime prevention, expanded trash collection and improvements at Municipal Stadium.

Aleshire joked that because he has a reputation of not returning things, he was turning in his city keys during the meeting, so it was documented for the record and on cable access TV - and he did.

City to continue offering Coca-Cola beverages

Central Coca-Cola Bottling Co. will remain the official beverage supplier for some of Hagerstown's parks and recreation facilities.

A contract that the Hagers-town City Council unanimously approved Tuesday locks the city into Coca-Cola products for Claude M. Potterfield Pool, Fairgrounds Park and Hagerstown Greens at Hamilton Run for five years.

Central Coca-Cola Bottling Co. will pay the city $4,000 a year, plus a sales commission of 25 percent. The benefit to the city was estimated at $41,263 over five years.

The company also will give the city marketing items, such as T-shirts, hats, visors and umbrellas.

Spickler's Market lease renewed

The city has renewed its lease with Spickler's Market at 17 E. Franklin St.

The city owns the building. The market uses about 1,050 square feet on the first floor.

The five-year lease agreement says Paul A. Spickler will pay the city $7,087.50 in 2007 and the rent will increase each year.

The Hagerstown City Council unanimously approved the new lease.

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