Advertisement

Washington County to address hotel/motel tax this year

Barr delivers State of the County talk

Barr delivers State of the County talk

February 06, 2008|By JOSHUA BOWMAN

WASHINGTON COUNTY -- Washington County Commissioners President John F. Barr delivered the 2008 State of the County address Tuesday morning at the Four Points Sheraton on Dual Highway.

Barr highlighted the county's accomplishments in 2007 and touched on several initiatives the county will pursue in the future.

One proposal, a change to the hotel/motel tax, will create a long-awaited revenue sharing program between the county and its municipalities, county officials said.

"This is something the city and other municipalities have talked about for a while, so we wanted to start the year by creating something like this," County Administrator Gregory B. Murray said.

Under the change, a portion of the revenue from the tax will go directly to some or all of the county's nine municipalities.

Advertisement

Another major initiative for 2008 is updating the county's comprehensive plan, a document that guides county planners on future growth and development.

Also coming up are the groundbreaking for the new Washington County Hospital and the completion of a project to update the county's emergency communications system.

He said major accomplishments of the past year included the newly extended runway at Hagerstown Regional Airport, recommendations to change the county's excise tax and an agreement to widen the intersection of U.S. 40 and Edgewood Drive.

After Barr's hour-long address, the commissioners fielded questions from the audience and from the Hagerstown-Washington County Chamber of Commerce, which sponsored the event.

A question about whether the commissioners support a charter home rule proposal generated a mix of yes, no and in-between answers.

Both Barr and Commissioner James F. Kercheval support the charter, which would give county government more power to pass local legislation.

Commissioner William J. Wivell said he supports charter government, but not the proposal.

Commissioners Terry L. Baker and Kristin B. Aleshire said they would not take a side publicly on the issue.

The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|