Hagerstown City Council briefs

July 28, 2010|By KATE S. ALEXANDER

Hagerstown City Council OKs retirement incentive

The Hagerstown City Council on Tuesday approved a retirement incentive for full-time employees.

As many as 35 full-time employees who are eligible for full retirement could receive a $12,500 incentive if they retire by Jan. 1, 2011, according to the ordinance approved Tuesday.

City Human Resources Director Donna Frazier said previously that 70 employees are eligible for full retirement. Those who are interested must apply for the plan in writing between Sept. 1 and Oct. 1, she said.

The plan calls for selecting up to 35 recipients at random Oct. 8, she said.

However, the city will take care to ensure that a single department does not lose all of its experienced staff through the program.


Those who are selected will receive payment and sick leave according to their union contracts or the city policy for non-union employees, according to city documents.

A brief description of the program was provided to the council earlier this month.

It described the incentive as a way for the city to "hire at entry level rate, eliminate the vacant position entirely," or fill it with "an employee impacted due to a reduction in force."

The ordinance passed unanimously Tuesday. Councilmen Forrest Easton and Martin Brubaker were absent.

The program is effective Aug. 27, according to city documents.

HPD to add fourth School Resource Officer

The Hagerstown Police Department will add a fourth School Resource Officer for the coming school year.

The City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to amend its agreement with the Washington County Board of Education to add the fourth resource officer.

According to city documents, the Board of Education will reimburse the city $37,500 of the officer's salary.

Hagerstown will not add any new officers but will use an existing officer to fill the position, Police Chief Arthur Smith wrote in a memo to city staff.

The $37,500 will be additional revenue for the department, according to the motion made Tuesday.

Councilmen Forrest Easton and Martin Brubaker were absent.

Maryland Theatre will be allowed to serve alcohol outdoors this fall

The City of Hagerstown will allow The Maryland Theatre to serve alcohol outdoors at a fundraiser this fall.

The theatre is hosting a benefit dinner and concert Sept. 11 to commemorate its 95th anniversary.

In a unanimous vote Tuesday, the council agreed to permit open containers on a section of Potomac Street the evening of the event.

Only those in the designated event area will be allowed to possess alcoholic beverages outdoors, according to the motion approved Tuesday.

The permit approved waiving the open containers law between the hours of 5:30 and 8 p.m. only. It also specified only beer and wine as allowed outdoors.

Councilmen Martin Brubaker and Forrest Easton were absent.

Rent temporarily reduced for Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau Welcome Center

Hagerstown City Council temporarily reduced the rent Tuesday for the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau Welcome Center.

The council voted unanimously to require the visitors bureau to only pay half of its $18,600 rent for fiscal year 2011.

The Visitors Bureau operates the Welcome Center out of the Elizabeth Hager Building on Potomac Street.

Revenue from the building contributes to the city's property management fund, City Finance Director Al Martin said.

According to city documents, reducing the rent will help keep the welcome center open.

Councilmen Martin Brubaker and Forrest Easton were absent.

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