Linthicum * Ferndale * Brooklyn Park * Pumphrey

NORTH COUNTY --

December 24, 1992

Lease approved for Friendship rec facility

Visitors to Friendship Park near Baltimore-Washington International Airport should be able to tee off at a driving range this spring and practice their batting swings by summer.

The state's Board of Public Works yesterday approved a 20-year lease of the park to Anne Arundel County and a sublease of 40 acres of the park to a private recreation facility operator.

The only obstacle remaining is for the county to sign its final agreement with Privatization Plus Inc. of Glen Burnie to operate a miniature golf course, driving range and batting cages at the park.

Jay Cuccia, assistant director of the county's Department of Recreation and Parks, said the contract should be signed next week.

Admission to the park will continue to be free, but there will be a charge for using the batting cages, driving range and golf course, he said.

The county will receive $50,000 or 5 percent of the gross receipts of the facility, whichever is greater. After subtracting any maintenance or security costs, the county must turned the remainder of the money to the Maryland Aviation Administration.

The county has leased Friendship Park from the state since 1965 for $1 a year.

Over the years, the park has gained a reputation as a center of overt homosexual and drug activity. The county hopes that the golfing and batting cages will attract more people to the park and discourage illicit activities.

Privatization Plus, a Glen Burnie company, is expected to invest $1 million in the project, Mr. Cuccia said.

Drug charges filed after traffic stop

A Baltimore woman was charged with possession of marijuana Monday after being stopped for a traffic violation on Ritchie Highway near Church Street.

According to the police report, officers stopped Melinda Dolores Wilson, 24, of the first block of Ballman Court at 2:40 p.m. for JTC driving through a red light at Church Street.

When the officers ran a computer check on her license, they found that it had been suspended and arrested her. Searching her purse, the officers found a wooden pipe with marijuana residue, two plastic baggies of marijuana and rolling papers.

She also was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and traffic violations.

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