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NEWS
by TARA REILLY | October 13, 2005
tarar@herald-mail.com A public hearing on proposed changes to a Washington County ordinance dealing with growth regulations drew opposition about a related matter - the county's $13,000-per-unit building excise tax. "I was appalled to find out it was going to cost me $13,000 before I could stick a shovel in the ground," said Harlan Barnes, who lives outside of Hagerstown. He called the tax "too much of a burden for anyone to build a house. " Barnes was one of eight people who spoke Wednesday night at a public hearing held by the Washington County Commissioners.
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NEWS
By Tamela Baker | September 11, 2005
Most Washington County officials insist new development should pay for itself, but determining how to charge developers for costs of new roads, schools and infrastructure can be a challenge. With changes to the excise tax approved by the General Assembly this spring and enacted by the Washington County Commissioners this summer, Washington County entered a period of transition. Fees and agreements reached between developers and the county government for roads and schools under the current Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance remain in place and vary depending on where the development occurs and the impact the development will have, Public Works Director Gary Rohrer said.
NEWS
by GREGORY T. SIMMONS | July 20, 2005
HAGERSTOWN gregs@herald-mail.com For the third time in as many months, the proposed annexation of 52 acres into Hagerstown city limits along Haven Road likely will be put off again after a decision Tuesday night by the City Council. Under the most recent proposed agreement between the city and the developer, Kenneth Jordan, 376 homes would be built on the property. The annexation proposal, however, has been under consideration for several months. City Administrator Bruce Zimmerman said the delay this time rests in questions over the city's Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance (APFO)
NEWS
by TARA REILLY | July 16, 2005
tarar@herald-mail.com A proposal by a Washington County Commissioner calls for halting development in areas where schools are designated as having "failing" capacities, saying any more enrollment growth might negatively affect the education of students who attend those facilities. The proposal by County Commissioner James F. Kercheval is part of several changes he recommended to the county's Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance (APFO). He presented the recommendations to the commissioners on Tuesday.
NEWS
by TARA REILLY | July 13, 2005
The Washington County Commissioners on Tuesday voted to delay for two weeks a vote on changes to the county's Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance (APFO). The proposed changes deal with the definition of a minor subdivision, school capacity designations and other amendments. The county's APFO helps ensure that roads, schools and other government services are adequate to handle growth.
NEWS
by GREGORY T. SIMMONS | July 13, 2005
HAGERSTOWN gregs@herald-mail.com Hagerstown City Council members on Tuesday disagreed with some wishes of the Washington County Board of Education, saying they will push for wording on a new law that will aid some downtown redevelopment as well as not create financial difficulties for developers or homeowners. At its Tuesday work session, the City Council took up a discussion on the city's proposed Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance (APFO), which would in part link the ability to build new homes to the amount of available space in local schools for new students.
NEWS
July 5, 2005
Last week members of the Hagerstown Planning Commission talked about their fear that adopting an Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance (APFO) would give the Washington County School Board veto power over in-city development. Let us suggest that both groups look at the situation not as a matter of who controls what, but about how both can work together for orderly growth and development. Adopting its own APFO would allow the city to get a share of the building excise tax that is collected by the Washington County government.
NEWS
by GREGORY T. SIMMONS | June 30, 2005
gregs@herald-mail.com Members of the Hagerstown Planning Commission on Wednesday expressed concerns with the proposed county excise tax and related adequate public facilities ordinance (APFO) that could go into effect as early as July 12. Their comments will be forwarded to the Hagerstown City Council, which is scheduled to take action on the measures in late July. The county's building excise tax would collect between $13,000 and $31,000 on each new home, depending on the type of home and how many are being built at one time in a development.
NEWS
by DANIEL J. SERNOVITZ | June 15, 2005
daniels@herald-mail.com HAGERSTOWN - The Hagerstown City Council is scheduled to vote Tuesday to introduce legislation restricting the amount of new home construction in the city, even though they will not be in a position at that time to adopt the adequate public facilities ordinance (APFO). "I think if we introduce the ordinances next week ... it keeps the process moving," City Administrator Bruce Zimmerman said during the council's work session Tuesday. "It doesn't take effect until you actually vote to adopt the ordinance.
NEWS
by BRIAN SHAPPELL | June 10, 2005
Chief: Senior pranks were 'pretty tame' SMITHSBURG - Smithsburg Police Department Chief Michael Potter said Tuesday that recent "senior pranks" that accompany the end of the school year were "pretty tame" compared with previous years. Potter said police halted several of the planned student pranks before any damage was done. Among the successful efforts was an incident at Smithsburg High School in which the license plates from nearly 30 vehicles parked near the school's tennis courts were removed and thrown into a pile.
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