Residents seek relief from road payments

April 11, 2000|By Mary Gail Hare | Mary Gail Hare,SUN STAFF

Residents of a small Sykesville subdivision have asked the county to waive a portion of a road construction fee.

In a public hearing yesterday, several Homedale residents said they would assume their share of the expense, but they balked at paying for relocating utility lines.

"Those lines were put in the wrong place by the original developer," said Nancy Boguski. "Moving them increases our costs significantly."

For many years, Homedale Road was a private, unpaved lane, about one-third of a mile long. The county took over the road two years ago and, with residents' consent, put the road construction project out to bid. Reisterstown-based Bosley Inc. won the contract, and charged the county $124,778 to pave an 18-foot-wide road with 6-foot shoulders.

Seventeen homeowners were to share 75 percent of the cost through a 10-year, no-interest loan. The county would pay the remaining costs.

The total bill was $211,000, which included a $66,772 charge from Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. for moving power lines.

"None of us are opposed to paying for the cost of the road, but why should we pay for moving utilities?" asked Peter Boguski.

Boguski bought his home five years ago, knowing he would eventually pay for the road, he said. He estimated the project would add about $800 a year to his tax bill until the debt was repaid. The additional costs have pushed that figure to nearly $1,000, he said.

"The residents voted to proceed based on our preliminary engineering costs," said county engineer Howard Noll. "They should not be surprised."

Commissioner Donald I. Dell said he would consider the comments and notify residents by mail when the Board of Commissioners reaches a decision.

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