Hogan shifts money to roads, but not everyone's a winner

hen Gov. Larry Hogan pulled the plug on Baltimore’s Red Line last month, he rolled out $2 billion in spending on road projects, giving the state’s toll-free highway system its largest infusion of cash in decades.

In shifting Maryland’s transportation priorities from transit projects to roads, the Republican made clear that as long as he is governor, asphalt will flow freely.

But not necessarily evenly.

The list of major new projects that Hogan funded includes big-ticket highway improvements for rural Maryland, from Garrett County in the west to the Eastern Shore. There are projects costing $100 million or more in Prince George’s, Montgomery and Frederick counties.

In Baltimore City? Nothing.

In Baltimore County? Less than 1 percent of spending for new projects.

…..

•Garrett County: $90 million, or more than 10 percent of the new project money, to realign U.S. 219 between Interstate 68 and the Pennsylvania line.

 

Read More Here:  http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/bs-md-hogan-highways-20150718-story.html#page=1

Garrett County takes the right approach to fracking

Unlike some other states, Maryland refused to jump willy-nilly on the hydraulic fracturing bandwagon. Instead, Maryland has proceeded slowly and deliberately, preferring, if it errs, to be on the side of caution. Considering how the story of fracking has developed in recent years, the cautious approach has proved valuable.

As we said in a past editorial on this subject, Maryland can live without fracking, which is the process of injecting liquid at high pressure into subterranean rocks to force open fissures that then release oil and gas. However, the matter of whether the state will eventually permit this method of recovering deeply buried natural gas and oil has not yet been settled.

As things stand, no fracking permits can be issued in the state until October 2017. The time between now and then should be used wisely for continued evaluation of the pros and cons of fracking, the latter of which have been widely reported.

That’s exactly what Garrett County is doing. A federal grant announced last week will help that county evaluate the wisdom of permitting fracking there. According to The Associated Press, the federal government, via the Appalachian Regional Commission, has awarded Garrett County a $37,500 matching-funds grant to “explore potential impacts on tourism, property values and outdoor recreation if the state allows fracking in western Maryland.”

Restrictions placed on use of jetpacks at Deep Creek Lake

MCHENRY, Md. (AP) – Officials say the use of jetpacks has been restricted at Deep Creek Lake.

The Cumberland Times-News (http://bit.ly/1KghIFO) reports that Deep Creek Lake Policy and Review Board spokesman Bob Hoffmann says the devices can be used, but not on weekends or holidays during the summer season.

Jetpacks are backpacks that use water to thrust a wearer into the air.

Read More Here: http://www.myfoxdc.com/story/29587189/restrictions-placed-on-use-of-jetpacks-at-deep-creek-lake

Federal grant to help Garrett County study fracking impact

WASHINGTON — The federal government is awarding funds to help a western Maryland county study the potential economic impact of hydraulic fracturing for natural gas.

Sens. Ben Cardin and Barbara Mikulski announced the $37,500 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission on Friday. It must be matched with an equal amount of local funding

Read More Here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/federal-grant-to-help-garrett-county-study-fracking-impact/2015/07/17/13a8ca7e-2c9c-11e5-960f-22c4ba982ed4_story.html

Garrett County Announces New County Administrator

The Board of Garrett County Commissioners has announced the appointment of Kevin Null as County Administrator. Mr. Null was previously Town Manager/Chief Operating Officer for West Manheim (Pennsylvania) Township for 5 years and also served on the New Windsor (Maryland) Town Council as Vice President for 12 years. Prior to his position with West Manheim Township Mr. Null had 23 years of corporate security experience with Chevy Chase Bank and Provident Bank.

Kevin earned a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice from the University of Baltimore and a Masters of Business Administration from Frostburg State University.

Board of County Commissioners Chairman Paul Edwards stated that “I am very excited to add Kevin to our team in county government. He has years of experience working with municipal governments in Maryland and his skill set matches our needs extremely well. I think he has the perfect demeanor to be successful working in Garrett County and that the public will enjoy working with him. He truly is a great fit”

Read More Here:  http://deepcreektimes.com/news.asp