Ethics panel is asked to review delegate's role in...

ARUNDEL DIGEST

January 10, 2002

Ethics panel is asked to review delegate's role in zoning tussle

The county ethics commission plans to review a state delegate's involvement in a Severna Park zoning tussle, the delegate said yesterday.

The review, prompted by information passed to the commission by County Executive Janet S. Owens, would determine whether Del. David G. Boschert, a Crownsville Republican, violated the law by acting as an unregistered lobbyist.

An unsigned letter sent to Owens states that Boschert, who runs a media consulting company, was "hired" by a group of residents to attempt to secure County Council support for changing the zoning of property near the intersection of Routes 2 and 10 from residential to commercial. That cover letter was accompanied by other letters from residents who live near the intersection.

Owens, a Democrat, said she wasn't accusing Boschert of actively lobbying County Council members. She passed the information on to the ethics commissions, she said, because "I'm not sure what to think. That's what troubles me."

Boschert said he did not lobby and that he recently cleared the consulting deal with the Severna Park residents with state ethics officials.

"I was under the understanding that it was OK because we can do work like that," he said yesterday.

Boschert met with Betsy K. Dawson, the county ethics commission's executive director, yesterday. He said Dawson told him the commission would review the matter and get back to him quickly.

The zoning change, part of a small-area plan for Severna Park, was put on hold recently when a long-range planning bill for Severna Park expired without action by the County Council. The bill was reintroduced Monday.

Fire starts in pellet stove, destroys Pasadena house

A Pasadena man was homeless yesterday after an early-morning fire nearly destroyed his house in the 700 block of 222nd St., Anne Arundel County fire officials said.

The fire started shortly after 5 a.m. in a pellet stove that malfunctioned in the rear of the house, said Division Chief John M. Scholz. The man escaped from his house unharmed and called 911, Scholz said.

It took 26 firefighters about an hour to control the fire, which caused more than $75,000 in damage.

Panel to view draft bills on Taylor site project

An advisory committee will receive draft copies Monday of three bills that would transfer ownership of the former David Taylor Research Center to private developers, a county official said yesterday.

Also in the works is an agreement that would establish design and construction standards and set the size of the development at the Severn River site, said Jerome W. Klasmeier, special projects coordinator for the county.

Members of the David Taylor Redevelopment Advisory Committee will have time to review the document before it is signed by County Executive Janet S. Owens and developers, he said.

County officials met recently with Annapolis Partners, the group that will redevelop the site, to discuss the agreement, which would require the developer to submit its plans to the county as the project progresses.

Traffic continues to be a top concern for area residents. A third traffic study was scheduled to be discussed at an advisory committee meeting last night.

Autopsy on woman found in hotel is inconclusive

An autopsy performed yesterday on a 50-year-old woman found unconscious last month in a Laurel hotel failed to determine why she died Monday, leaving Anne Arundel County police few clues about a death they're describing as "suspicious."

Police said employees at the Laurel Holiday Inn found Becky "Kelly" Crisp lying unconscious in her room two days before Christmas. She remained unconscious at Med Star Hospital in Washington until she died.

Crisp, a resident of Fredericksburg, Va., was last seen by a hotel maid Dec. 21. Police are asking anyone who might have information to call Detective Richard Alban at 410-222-3458 or the police tip line at 410-923-4543.

Man shot in Annapolis is released from hospital

An 18-year-old Baltimore man who was shot early yesterday morning in Annapolis was treated at Maryland Shock Trauma Center and released.

Edmond D. Johnson of the 4000 block of Pennington Ave. was shot in the left side while standing on College Creek Terrace in Annapolis about 3 a.m., according to Annapolis police reports.

Detectives knew of no motive and had no suspects in the shooting, police said yesterday.

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