WESTMINSTER — Celebrating the majesty of trees, county and town officials sang theleafy plants' praises at Wednesday's Arbor Day celebration.
"How can you hate (trees)," asked Neil Ridgely, county landscape plan reviewer. "They're like a good dog. They don't bite and they keep on giving until the end."
During the second annual county celebration, trees were presentedto the representatives of each county municipality.
In contrast to the taller American Elms distributed last year, the county gave smaller, flowering Japanese Snowbell trees during the celebration.
"These are small-statured, fragrant trees," said Ridgely. "They won't get large."
Another tree -- a Ginko Bilboa or Maidenhair grown by Kevin Dayhoff, of the Carroll County Forestry Board -- was presented to the Carroll County Department of Parks and Recreation.
The tree will be planted at the Community Pond off Route 140.
"One of my earliest childhood memories is of falling into the pond and chasing theducks," Dayhoff joked. "I raised this tree myself, so it pleased me that it would be planted somewhere that meant something to me."
The first semi-annual Landscape and Design in Development awards were presented to developers that had worked to enhance the beauty of Carroll on their properties, Ridgely said.
* Residential Development Design -- Parrs Ridge.
* Commercial Development Design -- Carroll Community College; honorable mention to Sandymount Amoco
* Grounds Maintenance Award -- FMS Building by Mark MillerDevelopment and Gateway West by McShea & Co. Development
No recipient was selected for the Forest Preservation category.
WESTMINSTER -- The City Council is expected to act on aresolution tomorrow to extend the deadline for a decision on a rezoning request from a county builder.
Martin K. P. Hill, president ofthe Hampstead-based Masonry Contractors Inc., and partner Richard Maring submitted a rezoning request for a 74-acre site on which they want to build a mix of 280 housing units.
The builders want the landrezoned from R-10,000, which allows four homes per acre, to PD-4, which allows about the same density but permits town house clusters.
The city Planning and Zoning Commission urged the council to deny the request, citing concerns about impact on roads and schools. The land is adjacent to the Furnace Hills residential subdivision.
Council members have indicated they'd like more time to study the request.
Also tomorrow, the council also is expected to act on a measure toupdate the affirmative action plan for city workers.
The meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. at City Hall.
MEETING AGENDA SET
TANEYTOWN -- The City Council will consider an open burning ordinance at its meeting tomorrow.
The proposed ordinance would require permits for large, supervised fires, such as those fire companies conduct for training. The permits would require that adjoining property owners be notified and that information about the fire be posted.
The meeting willbegin at 7:30 p.m. at the City Municipal Office on East Baltimore Street.
SCHOOL AGENDA SET
The county Board of Education will receivea staff recommendation for the redistricting of the new Piney Ridge Elementary School, scheduled to open this September, at its meeting Wednesday.
The staff's recommendation comes on the heels of two public meetings about the redistricting proposal, which will affect students at Eldersburg, Carrolltowne and Freedom elementary schools.
There was little opposition to the three options developed by school officials. The redistricting will not require students to be transferred from one existing school to another.
The redrawing of boundary lines is necessary to alleviate overcrowding and to balance enrollment among the schools.
The board will not act on the recommendation Wednesday. A final public meeting has been set for 7:30 p.m. May 1 atLiberty High School. The board will take action on the issue at its regular meeting that month.
EARLY RELEASE FOR BUDGET
WESTMINSTER -- Don't look for "Budget Brawl II" this spring, when the City Councilsits down to hammer out a spending plan for the coming fiscal year.
The issue that caused no shortage of enmity between the council and Mayor W. Benjamin Brown during the 1990 budget debate probably won't be a factor this year.
In contrast to last year, a draft budget will be released two weeks before the council's May 6 public hearing on the plan, said Councilman William F. Haifley, who is chairman of the budget committee.
Last year, as in many previous years, the budget proposal was not scheduled to be unveiled until the hour of the public hearing. That angered Brown, who thought the public should havea chance to study the plan before the hearing.
When the mayor released the draft to the media three days before the hearing, an angry council demanded his resignation. Council President Kenneth Hornberger called release of the budget "a serious breach of protocol."