Company loses mining permit after citizen's appeal ANNAPOLIS/SOUTH COUNTY -- Davidsonville * Edgewater * Shady Side * Deale

April 29, 1993|By John A. Morris | John A. Morris,Staff Writer

The Anne Arundel County Board of Appeals revoked a Davidsonville company's permit to mine sand and gravel yesterday after an attorney for the firm said his client no longer wanted it.

"Sand and gravel is not a commodity people are buying right now," said Mike Roblyer, who represents Queen Anne Sand & Gravel Inc., which is owned by James E. Cunningham.

If the market improves, Mr. Roblyer said the company could apply for another permit in 18 months. County law requires that applicants denied a zoning permit, or "special exception," wait at least that long before reapplying.

An administrative hearing officer granted Mr. Cunningham a special exception last summer to continue mining after his first permit, issued in 1988, expired. The 44-acre sand and gravel mine is on Patuxent River Road, about a quarter-mile southwest of Queen Anne Bridge Road.

Timothy Freeman, a neighbor of the mine, appealed the new special exception leading to yesterday's hearing. Mr. Freeman and other Davidsonville residents have complained that Mr. Cunningham has been a poor neighbor, disregarding county-ordered measures to protect the community from noise and the operation's unsightly appearance.

"The odds are, my client will be back again in 18 months fighting this case," said Mark Lechowicz, an attorney for Mr. Freeman.

Another South County sand and gravel mine also lost a recent zoning case, when administrative hearing officer Robert Wilcox denied Brandywine Enterprises a special exception to extend the life of its 73.5-acre operation in Harwood for another 10 years.

Neighbors of the Sands Road mine complained about noise, air pollution and traffic.

Mr. Wilcox, in his April 2 decision, said Brandywine Enterprises failed to show satisfactorily that it was not a nuisance. He was particularly concerned that Brandywine measured noise at its site on a day when equipment was being operated without the backup beepers required by state safety laws.

"Why the applicant chose not to include beeper sounds as part of its noise analysis was not explained," Mr. Wilcox said. "This omission is fatal to the applicants case."

Brandywine has appealed Mr. Wilcox's decision to the Board of Appeals.

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