James Rada, Jr.
(5/3) Three-tenths of an acre has stalled
the Lawyer Farm annexation request.
George Rathlev with Beazer Homes spoke to
the Thurmont Planning and Zoning Commission on
April 22 about a problem with the annexation
request that has arisen in the past few
months. It involves a .3-acre piece of land
that the Town of Thurmont owns but is not
within the town’s boundaries.
“You cannot leave a piece of land in the
county that is completely surrounded by land
in town,” said Dave Servern, the attorney
representing Beazer, which is exactly what
would happen if the Lawyer Farm was annexed
into the town.
Beazer Homes wants Thurmont to annex 130
acres into town that they would then develop
250 single-family homes on. However, this
can’t happen unless the town first annexes
that small piece of property.
“Unless it does happen, we are stuck in
limbo and can’t move forward with our own
annexation proposal,” Severn said.
Beazer offered to pay all of the associated
fees with the small annexation (estimated to
be around $3,500) if the town decided to
pursue the annexation.
The commission members discussed options
for addressing this issue and decided to
recommend to the town commissioners that they
pursue both annexation requests simultaneously
with Beazer paying for the costs of both
request. Then the smaller annexation would be
heard first at the meeting where the
commissioners would vote to annex or not. If
the commissioners vote “no” on the smaller
annexation, the larger Lawyer Farm annexation
would be a dead issue. If the commissioners
vote “yes” on the smaller annexation, then
they would also vote on the Lawyer Farm
The Lawyer Farm project includes 250 houses
on 8,000 and 12,000 square foot lots. Beazer
would like to have 35 houses permitted each
One major improvement Beazer Homes proposes
is to oversize the sewer line needed for their
development by a four times the needed
capacity and then to use that additional
capacity to relieve some of the of the sewage
traveling through town lines and causing
problems on Ironmaster Court, according to
He also pointed out that the proffer
package Beazer is offering the town for the
annexation would be worth about $6 million to