(2/2/04) The board of commissioners' prolonged
effort to draft a plan to control growth while the town's
sewer system is repaired will drag on to a fifth month.
That decision was made after members
of the town's business community, completely silent during the
previous four months of public debate over different plans,
vociferously protested the moratorium plan that would halt all
residential, commercial and industrial growth for an
The meeting ended with plans tabled
and an edict for Mike Lucas, the town's planner, to draft a "moratorium"
that wouldn't prohibit any potential commercial or industrial
growth in the town. In doing so, the commissioners ignored
claims from Mr. Lucas and John Clapp, the town's attorney,
that a "partial moratorium" was an oxymoron.
Reaver, who owns Emmitsburg Glass Co. and is developing East
End Industrial Park in the town, and W. Dale Hess Jr., who
owns the Sleep Inn and land around it, each said they were
working on deals that could bring new stores or businesses
tothe town in the next few years.
Mr. Reaver said he plans to construct
a new building to accommodate the growth of his company. The
current building will be sold to WE Delauter & Son, a Thurmont
excavation company that has outgrown its location. Overall, he
said he had three lots under contract that would add .100 jobs
Mr. Hess said he's in negotiations
with at least two clients, including Dollar General, a
Bob Mort, an Emmitsburg businessman
for about 40 years, said he didn't want the, board to stop
businesses from coming in "and the whole town comes to a
Each board member agreed that they
didn't want to see business development hampered.
Thecommissioners were careful provide the means for comma cial
and industrial growth crafting a managed growth ph but
business interests wE included in the blanket moratc um they
"We're cutting off our bre and
butter," complained Path Boyle, the board's preside
until development began, and paying
$75,000 to the town for sewer repair.
Michael Lucas, Emmitsburg's planner,
said the $75,000 covers the estimated construction cost for
the part of the Little Run sewer line running through the
Bollingers' property. The line is scheduled to be replaced
Commissioner Joyce Rosen-steel and
Mayor Jim Hoover were concerned about when the property would
be developed and its impact on the sewer system if the town
failed to enact a managed growth plan or moratorium. The
Bollingers essentially accepted a moratorium on their
property, agreeing that the land will not be developed until
the town goes 180 consecutive days without exceeding the
design capacity at its wastewater treatment plant.
In case the town imposed a moratorium,
the Bollingers had asked to be exempt from townod to three
Mr. Elder, the lone dissenter on the
board, said he thought it was a good project but couldn't
support it given the problems the town has with its sewer
Commissioner Cliff Sweeney, however,
reasoned that the Bollingers "most likely won't be building
any houses until we get the sewer lines fixed anyway." Mr.
taxes while it was in effect for a
Boyle said annexation opponents period of up to five years. At
the were off base when they claimed mayor's behest, the
developers the town got nothing out of the accepted a
reduction of that peri- deal, pointed to the money provided
for sewer-line repairs and upgrading Irishtown Road.
If COPE opts to try to take the matter
before the voters, it will have 45 days from when the
annexation resolution is passed to gather valid signatures
from 20 percent of the town's 1,020 registered voters. The
resolution is expected to be ready for the board's March 1
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