WESTMINSTER — The mayor and City Council have announced that a ban on city water usage went into effect at 8 a.m. yesterday.
The mandatory ban on all non-commercial outdoor water usage by city water customers is beingimposed through Resolution R-91-16. The city will enforce the ban under conditions set forth in Section 160-13 of the Westminster City Code and the ban will remain in effect until further action by the mayor and council.
The penalty for violation of this ban is a $25 fine for the firstoffense and $50 fine for the second offense. The city will discontinue water service indefinitely to repeat offenders.
Water conservation also is encouraged for inside residential water use and all commercial uses.
TAXES PAY FOR DUMPS?
A county committee last week recommended that recycling and usable landfills be paid for through self-sufficient enterprise funds and that the money to close old landfillsbe taken from general tax revenue.
The Solid Waste Management System Funding Options Committee, a group of environmentalists, county staff members and waste haulers charged with finding ways to pay for the disposal and recycling of the county's trash, met Thursday and preliminarily decided to separate the two types of expenditures.
Although it is far from a final recommendation, the decision to split themoney was meant to separate the costs of recycling and solid waste disposal from interest charges on closing costs for old, outdated landfills.
Earlier this year, the commissioners rejected a proposal from the then-Department of Resource Protection to raise impact fees toa level that would cover interest payments on the old landfills, operation costs of the open landfills and the costs of implementing a pilot curbside recycling program.
In addition to separating the costs of old and current landfills, the committee strongly urged that money for current landfills and recycling be taken from the county's tipping fee.
That per ton charge, now $15, is expected to rise in thecoming year.
The committee, which has until December to present its final report to the county commissioners, has met infrequently butis expected to meet more often in the near future.
STREET VARIANCE MULLED
MOUNT AIRY -- At its regular monthly meeting tomorrow, the Town Council will discuss a builder's request for narrower streets in a proposed development.
The meeting is scheduled for 8 p.m. at Town Hall.
Wildwood Park Inc. is asking the council to approve plans for 27-foot-wide streets for its proposed 31-unit subdivision.
Town subdivision regulations require streets to be at least 34 feet wide. To build narrower streets, a developer must obtain a street-design variance, which requires the council's approval.
Wildwood Park is planned on 17 acres on Ridge Avenue.
The council will also discussrecommended revisions to the town's home-occupation regulations.
After its regular meeting, the council will meet in closed session todiscuss personnel matters.
PHILLIPS GETS NEA ACTION
A Hampstead woman's complaint about handicapped accessibility has lead the National Endowment for the Arts to hold up a $549,000 grant to the Maryland State Arts Council.
Last week's suspension is the latest round in a heated exchange between the two agencies that began in November with a complaint from Marilyn Phillips, 47, a disability rights activist.
Phillips, who uses a wheelchair, says her disability has kept her from attending many Maryland arts programs that receive state and federal money. Before filing her formal complaint, she talked to statearts administrators about MSAC's headquarters inaccessibility to disabled persons.
A folklorist and English professor at Morgan State University, Phillips says she wants to make access to the arts into aright rather than a privilege.
"I would rather be working on my research, but every time I go out, there's something I can't do," she says. "Whether it's getting into the law library . . . or having a nice dinner . . . or going to an arts activity. I want people to understand that disability rights activists do this because we do not want our future -- or that of other disabled persons -- to reflect what wehave experienced."
All arts groups that receive federal grants must certify that their programs and facilities are in compliance with Section 504 of the federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which forbids discrimination against disabled people.
Arts Council spokeswoman Carol Fox King said the arts council certified that it was in compliance because it thought its historic building was exempt from the usualrequirements. The MSAC is housed in a 19th-century town house on Mulberry Street in Baltimore, which is inaccessible to people using wheelchairs.
"We're going to do whatever it takes to comply," King says.
The NEA money represents roughly 7 percent of MSAC's $7.8 million annual budget. About $236,000 will go to artists in education programs, artists advocacy programs and grants to individual artists. Therest will help support operating costs of the arts council.
(The NEA says the grant withheld is $565,000; the arts council insists theamount is $549,000.)
The council will not need any of the money until 1992, King says.