Boonsboro Town Council briefs

July 03, 2012

Town health insurance spike questioned

Boonsboro Councilman Kevin Chambers on Monday night questioned the cost of health insurance for town employees.

Chambers, who has seen some figures for the coverage, said it appears the town might be facing a $24,000 annual increase for the insurance.

Town Manager Debra Smith said Tuesday that the town was given the wrong rates, and those figures are not what it is paying.

Smith said she would get detailed figures about insurance costs for council members.

“I think we need to have some answers here,” Mayor Charles F. “Skip” Kauffman Jr. said during the town council meeting.


Town council reverses bike trail support

Boonsboro Town Council members Monday night dropped their support for a proposed pedestrian and bicycle trail from Hagerstown’s City Park to the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park.

Councilwoman Barbara Wetzel said there is opposition to the proposed Civil War Railroad Trail project, some of which stems from concerns that rights of ways needed for it would pass through large portions of private property.

Mayor Charles F. “Skip” Kauffman Jr., said he had received numerous calls about the project. The mayor said that he believes the town does not have to take a stand on the trail, emphasizing that it would not come through Boonsboro.

Kauffman said the issue should be tabled until officials get more information about the project.

The council passed a motion introduced by Wetzel to rescind an earlier motion to support the project.

The proposed Civil War Railroad Trail Project would follow a former Baltimore & Ohio railroad line, according to information provided at a council meeting last month.

At that meeting, the council agreed to send a letter of support for the project to the Washington County Board of Commissioners and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

Water runoff, speeding criticized

A St. Paul Road resident complained during a Boonsboro Town Council meeting Monday night about the ongoing problem of water runoff in his neighborhood.

Rick Byrd talked about a flooding problem he experienced recently and taking matters into his own hands if something is not done to help residents in the area.

Byrd also said speeding is a problem in the neighborhood, noting that he was almost hit by a car while running recently.

“Something needs to be done,” Byrd said.

Boonsboro Police Chief Jeff Hewett said his department has conducted periodic speed enforcement in the neighborhood, but would try to increase it.

The water runoff in the area comes from a mountain area behind St. Paul Street, Boonsboro Town Manager Debra Smith has said.

The mountain area is outside the town in Washington County.

Water has run into streets, including Orchard Drive and Lakin and Ford avenues, over the years, Smith said.

The issue came up during a meeting in September between the town council and the Washington County Board of Commissioners.

At that time, county Commissioner Ruth Anne Callaham sympathized with residents in the neighborhood, but said she was not sure where money would come from to fix the problem.

Councilman Kevin Chambers said Monday night that the town needs to be the “squeaky wheel” to get a resolution.

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