Celtic Festival to celebrate 30 Years in Garrett County

FRIENDSVILLE — On the green riverside of Friendsville Community Park, the Garrett County Celtic Festival will once again take place, celebrating for the 30th year the history and traditions of Scots, Irish and Welsh ancestry of the mountaintop.

The event will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. June 2.

For more Information click here.

Photo by Elizabeth Williams

PROGRAMS HELP GARRETT COUNTY

The Maryland General Assembly passed two bills that will benefit Garrett County and Deep Creek Lake.

The payment in lieu of taxes, or PILOT program, will result in Garrett County receiving about a million dollars in fiscal year 2019. The PILOT program benefits state forests, parks and wildlife management areas.

A bill was also passed that establishes the State Lakes Protection and Restoration Fund, which requires the Department of Natural Resources to develop a working budget, and to develop a plan, prioritizing projects that receive funding.

 

FEATURED LISTING- 4792 Friendsville Road

Looking for an amazing custom home close to Deep Creek Lake?

Check out my listing on Friendsville Road. This home is directly in between the lake and I-68 making it incredibly convenient.

10+acres! 5,000+sf, indoor heated pool. Uber-efficient compound constructed w/ Polystyrene poured concrete. Radiant floor heat, hardwood, granite, central vac, stone fireplace & accent walls, spacious rooms, massive walk-in closets in every room, skylights-contact for FULL feature list.

7 add. acres avail. UNZONED recreational paradise.

Must see to appreciate!

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION, CLICK HERE.

The case for a Maryland fracking ban

Next week, on Feb. 28, the Health, Education and Environmental Affairs Committee in the Maryland Senate will take up legislation dealing with shale gas drilling (fracking). For public safety, economic and environmental reasons, we believe the technology should not be allowed in Maryland.

Nearly three out of four senators have indicated a willingness to extend the current fracking moratorium, set to expire in October. This suggests they recognize that gas drilling will not be the economic bonanza that supporters have claimed since 2011, when the mountains above Marcellus Shale deposits in Western Maryland were first targeted.

Two bills are pending. One bans fracking altogether, while the other extends the moratorium for two years — though it departs from the current moratorium by permitting fracking in counties that approve it by referendum. On the ban bill, 23 of the Senate’s 33 Democrats are co-sponsors; the moratorium bill has 24 co-sponsors, including several Republicans.

In the House of Delegates, leadership declared long ago that a frack-free Maryland was its preference. A ban bill is advancing, and there is no moratorium bill. After committee hearings, legislation may go to the floor of each chamber for further debate. If the House and Senate don’t pass the same bill, some sort of compromise is required before any legislation can be approved and sent to the governor for his consideration.

About three-fourths of Marylanders already live in a place where local elected officials have created anti-fracking laws or resolutions. But fracking is regulated by the state. So, for those who’ve worked for six legislative sessions on the issue, the “heavy lift” is in the Maryland Senate.

Unlike neighboring Pennsylvania and West Virginia, Maryland did not rush into fracking. Successive administrations studied the technology, then overhauled outdated regulations. Meanwhile, energy prices continued to fall. The industry allowed nearly all of its original sub-surface mineral leases purchased last decade to lapse.

Furthermore, Maryland lacks the large-scale deposits, pipeline and processing infrastructure, and interest from industry (in the form of leased mineral rights) needed to make large-scale fracking financially feasible today. Yet we can’t rule out a change of circumstances that drives up fossil fuel prices — setting set off a new round of leasing that leads to fracking in years ahead.

Meanwhile, mounting problems elsewhere show the technology cannot be effectively regulated. In Pennsylvania recently, investigators from Public Herald, an investigative journalism nonprofit, dug up previously undisclosed citizen complaints about water contamination from fracking. Their work took years. Far from regulators’ 280-odd citations against industry, Public Herald found some 4,100 complaint filings — all told, one official complaint for nearly every well drilled. There’s more. It appears that the vast majority were never investigated. Then unresolved original complaints were shredded. Hundreds of state law violations were documented, and Flint, Mich.-style government criminality is a possibility.

In recent weeks in Western Maryland, many residents were infuriated by the Senate president’s public remarks that “there are no jobs whatsoever” in that part of the state. In fact, the unemployment rate in Western Maryland in 2016 was almost identical to the state average, and lower than some counties. Long gone are the days that Mountain Maryland depended overly on extractive energy and assembly line work.

Tourism and vacation real estate provide about half of all jobs and two-thirds of Garrett County’s tax base. Some of the highest-value rural real estate in the eastern United States lines the shores of Deep Creek Lake — second only to Ocean City as a vacation destination for Marylanders. Generations have visited and created the magical memories that many families cherish forever.

To state the obvious, nowhere in the world do fracking and world-class tourism mix. That’s why in Florida right now, with Republicans in charge, the legislature is considering a fracking ban. Florida’s economy is Deep Creek’s, writ large.

Additionally, fracking is “anti-business”: While a few short-term jobs may be created, most Western Marylanders — like others in a state where the solar industry grew 40 percent in 2015 — prefer small-business ownership, with sustainable economic investments in tourism, agriculture and green energy.

Mountainside solar installations are burgeoning. Indeed, Western Marylanders want the same future as the rest of the state. Most polls show that a strong majority of Garrett and Allegany county residents want the fracking ban that Marylanders as a whole support.

Is this another “jobs versus environment” debate? Not at all. Nationally, less than 10 percent of jobs on a well-pad are unionized. Along with embalmers and theater projectionists, zero petroleum engineers belong to unions.

The Laborers International Union recently came out in support of fracking and staged a rally in Annapolis. In a union with a proud tradition of training workers in emerging industries, wouldn’t organizing solar-industry installers sustain and grow its membership?

Finally, there’s the matter of fracking’s effect on global climate change. Farmers statewide are already feeling the effects of erratic precipitation, unpredictable freezes and bigger storms. This year, the annual “Winterfest” festival in Oakland, Md. (the state’s “snowiest” town) was postponed due to spring-like weather.

Scientists agree that fossil fuel combustion is driving planetary warming. And new scientific analysis confirms that fracked gas is nearly as bad as coal for the atmosphere. That’s because, before it is burned at distant power plants or on your stovetop, natural gas (mostly methane) is constantly leaking from wellheads, pipelines and compressor stations. Estimates of leakage vary from about 2 percent of production to more than 10 percent. Overall, carbon dioxide is a more potent greenhouse gas, but in the short-term — measured in 20-year periods —methane is orders of magnitude more detrimental. So the life-cycle warming impact of gas rivals coal. To save our climate, we have to steadily move off of gas, not increase its use through reckless fracking.

For Maryland’s economy, health and environment, we need to ban fracking once and for all. This drilling method will never be safe. We have all of the data we need on that. Now we just need the political will of our leaders in Annapolis to finally do the right thing.

For more information, click here.

NEW Listing: 4792 Friendsville Road

Check out my new listing on Friendsville Road!

This upscale mountain retreat offers 10+ acres, 5,000+ square feet and an indoor heated pool.

This is much more then the average home but rather an efficient compound constructed with Polystyrene poured concrete. Radiant floor heat, hardwood, granite, central vac, stone fireplace and accent walls, spacious rooms, massive walk-in closets in every room, skylights and much more! Contact us for the full feature list.

Seven added acres available. UNZONED recreational paradise. Must see to appreciate.

Five miles to Deep Creek Lake!

For more information, click here.

 

 

County Commissioners Announce Public Hearing Notice on a Proposal to Amend DC Watershed Zoning Ordinance

PUBLIC NOTICE

The Board of Garrett County Commissioners will conduct a Public Hearing on Tuesday, July 12, 2016, at 6:00 p.m. located at Garrett College – Room 205 – Continuing Education Building, 687 Mosser Road, McHenry, Maryland to review a citizen proposal to amend the Deep Creek Watershed Zoning Ordinance.

The Board of Garrett County Commissioners will conduct a Public Hearing on Tuesday, July 12, 2016, at 6:00 p.m. located at Garrett College – Room 205 – Continuing Education Building, 687 Mosser Road, McHenry, Maryland to review a citizen proposal to amend the Deep Creek Watershed Zoning Ordinance.

The specific amendment proposed is:

Amend Section 157.024(A)6 to read that “Natural Gas Wellheads” are not permitted (N) in all zoning    districts.

NOTE: The Garrett County Planning Commission voted to send this request on to the Board of County Commissioners with a favorable vote (5-1); however, they suggest amending the language to read “Natural Gas Wellheads including associated surface infrastructure, provided consistent language is included in the revised Comprehensive Plan”.

Copies of the amendment are available from the Department of Planning and Land Management, located at 203 South Fourth Street, Room 210, Oakland, MD  21550.  The Board welcomes any comments on these proposed amendments, at the hearing or in writing before the hearing.

By Order of the Board of Garrett County Commissioners.

For more, click here.

Garrett County Fair

If you are in Deep Creek Lake from July 30 – August 6, you are in luck! The Garrett County Fair will be held right here on Mosser Road in McHenry, Maryland. Offering rides, agricultural contests, vendors of all kinds, and much more, the fair is not something to miss!

garrett county fair

For more information, click on the photo.

 

 

Friendsville Days

The 36th Annual Friendsville Days will be held from July 29th & 30th. Come visit the small, charming town for all kinds of activities. There will be a parade, vendors, entertainment and more!

For more information, click on the photo.

fvilledays1

 

 

Chanteclaire Farm

Looking for a beautiful wedding venue near Deep Creek Lake? Check out Chanteclaire Farm. Located off the beautiful Friendsville Road, Chanteclaire Farm offers a serene setting, perfect for a wedding.

The farm is only a ten minute drive away from Deep Creek Lake!

WalkingTourFinalArt

But don’t just take my word for it- check out their website by clicking on the photo.