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Washington County briefs

October 13, 2011

County gives $10K to airport expo
The Washington County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to provide $10,000 from the county’s hotel-motel tax fund toward the Hagerstown Aviation Museum’s Wings and Wheels expo planned for this weekend at Hagerstown Regional Airport.
The expo, a fundraiser for the museum, will include exhibits of aircraft, cars, trucks, motorcycles and other transportation equipment.
 In a presentation to the commissioners in support of the request, Thomas B. Riford, president of the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau, and Hagerstown Aviation Museum President John Seburn said the two-day event on Saturday and Sunday would attract out-of-town exhibitors and attendees who would stay in local hotels.
This is the first year organizers of the event have requested funding from the county. Seburn said the museum decided to make the event larger this year and needed additional money to do so.
The event budget is $58,577, according to the museum’s application for county funds.

Plum Grove backed for historic register
The Washington County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to recommend Plum Grove, a 19th-century farmhouse in Clear Spring, for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.
The register is the federal government’s listing of properties deemed worthy of recognition and preservation for their significance in American history and culture.
Benefits of inclusion include eligibility for certain tax credits and consideration in the planning of federal and state projects, county Planning Director Stephen T. Goodrich said.
The Clear Spring District Historical Association, which owns the property, supports the application for listing on the national register, Goodrich said.

Farm gets water-quality easement
The Washington County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to approve a Boonsboro-area farm for a state-funded conservation easement aimed at protecting water quality.
The easement will be on Elmer A. Stone Jr.’s farm on the north side of Nicodemus Mill Road. The county has been awarded $400,000 for Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program easements this fiscal year and will spend $35,678.32 of that total on the Stone farm, county Planning Director Stephen T. Goodrich said.
The easement is intended to protect water quality by removing marginal agricultural land from production and replacing it with best-management practices, including riparian buffers, stabilization of highly erodible soils and restoration of wetlands, according to a written report by Goodrich.

Civil War exhibit loan approved
The Washington County Board of Commissioners voted 3-0 Tuesday night to approve a $20,000 loan to the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts for a Civil War exhibit.
The amount will be added to the balance of an existing loan the museum has received from the county, the commissioners said.
Commissioners Terry Baker, John F. Barr and Jeffrey A. Cline voted in favor of the loan. Commissioner Ruth Anne Callaham abstained because her husband is on the museum board, and Commissioner William B. McKinley was absent because he was representing the commissioners at an event.
The museum initially requested a $20,000 grant from the county, but the commissioners suggested a loan instead at their Oct. 4 meeting.
Museum Director Rebecca Massie Lane said then that she would have to check with the museum board before accepting the loan.

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— Heather Keels

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