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Washington County briefs

April 03, 2008|By JOSHUA BOWMAN

County looking at recycling program

Washington County is looking for a consultant to study the feasibility of a countywide, curbside recycling program.

In two to three weeks, the county will send out a request for proposals to consultants to see if and how a recycling program would work in Washington County, according to Julie Pippel, director of the Division of Environmental Management.

Pippel said any recycling program would be contracted out to a private company for pickup.

A county program would not include Hagerstown, which already has curbside recycling.

The study will have to determine whether it would be feasible to provide service in the county's other municipalities, Pippel said Wednesday.

A task force in Boonsboro recently surveyed residents there on whether they want curbside recycling in their town.

More than 86 percent of those surveyed said they wanted such a program.

Residents of other towns also have said they would like recycling programs.

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Solid Waste, humane society present budgets

The Washington County Commissioners on Tuesday heard budget presentations from the Humane Society of Washington County and Solid Waste Department.

The humane society is requesting $1.3 million, which would be a 13 percent increase over the current fiscal year.

The money is needed to pay for higher fuel, utility and veterinary service costs, to buy a new vehicle and to augment the humane society's spay and neuter program, according to Humane Society Executive Director Paul Miller.

Solid Waste Director Robert Davenport said revenues in that department are expected to be down $885,500, or 9.25 percent, in fiscal year 2009.

He said the decline is primarily due to an anticipated reduction in commercial tipping fees at the landfills caused by the construction downturn.

However, permit fees will not increase, Davenport said.

He also noted that mulch prices have not increased and mulch is currently available.

In addition, Engineer Dave Mason and Mark Bradshaw, deputy director of Environmental Management, noted that the department was able to save $3 million in landfill capping costs by combining two landfill cells.

Purchase of vacuum truck approved

The County Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to buy a single-axle diesel vacuum truck for the Department of Water Quality from Transteck Inc. dba Freightliner of Hagerstown.

The county will pay $111,263 for the truck. The money will come from the department's capital outlay account.

County to advertise positions

The County Commissioners on Tuesday agreed to advertise the following positions:

· Two grade-8 senior office associates, one in Human Resources and one at the Agricultural Center

· A grade-15 civil engineer

· A grade-9 senior plant operator in the Department of Water Quality

· A grade-11 land preservation planner

Agricultural Education Center board members approved

The following appointments to the Agricultural Education Center Board of Directors were approved 4-1 on Tuesday.

· Gerald Poffenberger, William Poffenberger and Peter Callas will be appointed to one-year terms.

· William Blair, Hal Spielman and Ronald Web will be appointed for two-year terms.

· Galen Long and Ronald Frey will be appointed for three-year terms.

The board recently was pared from 15 members to nine members.

Commissioner Kristin B. Aleshire voted against the appointments, saying that current county policy would not allow the reappointment of all of the members.

"I was not against reappointing the members just against having county policy that we repeatedly ignore," Aleshire wrote in an e-mail Wednesday.

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