Carroll Digest

CARROLL COUNTY DIGEST

May 28, 2004

Commissioners plan to spend $2.3 million to preserve 613 acres

The Carroll County commissioners committed yesterday to buying easements on 613 acres of land under the agricultural land preservation program.

This month, the commissioners approved three easement offers for a total cost of $2,300,800 - of which $1,262,836 will come from this fiscal year's budget. The remaining money will come from the 2005 budget.

The county has preserved about 42,000 acres of farmland.

Furniture purchase set for new college building

The Carroll County commissioners yesterday approved the purchase of new furniture and equipment for Carroll Community College's new Nursing and Allied Health Building, which will open in the fall.

The county will piggyback off the state's contract with State Use Industries to buy the furniture for $158,231.12.

The commissioners also approved the purchase of 18 100AH batteries for the county's Office of Public Safety's 800 MHz radio system for $32,526 through a state contract. The new batteries will replace old ones, which were installed in 1995 and have a life expectancy of 10 years.

New grinder approved for pumping station

The Carroll County commissioners yesterday approved an emergency purchase for a $78,000 grinder for the Piney Run sewer pumping station.

The grinder has broken three times since it was installed four years ago, and the cost for repairs runs between $15,000 and $20,000, said Cindy Miller, a senior buyer with the county's Bureau of Purchasing.

The pumping station serves the Freedom area in South Carroll and Springfield Hospital. The station deals with items such as sheets and rags from the hospital, Miller said.

As a result, pumps have clogged up, causing maintenance workers to manually clean the back-up, Miller said.

The commissioners also approved a contract worth $13,500 for the installation of the grinder.

County to buy VHF pagers for emergency workers

The county commissioners yesterday agreed to buy 214 VHF pagers for the county's emergency services personnel.

The pagers, at a cost of $81,908.50, will be paid for through a U.S. Department of Homeland Security grant.

C.J. Miller contract to fix 7 county roads approved

The Carroll commissioners yesterday approved a contract worth $658,150 with C.J. Miller of Hampstead for the milling and patching of seven county roads.

They are Brehm, Clear View, Ebert, Gorsuch, Hook, Stone and Uniontown roads.

New copy machine lease to save county thousands

The county commissioners yesterday agreed to lease a new Xerox copy machine for five years, saving the county $1,344.93 a month.

The yearly lease for the new Xerox DocuTech 120 CPC machine will cost $31,740.84, or $158,704.20 for five years. The new machine will replace an old Xerox machine in the county production and distribution office.

The county now pays $3,990 a month, compared with the new monthly lease of $2,645.07.

Deadline is Tuesday for USDA crop program

Farm producers have until Tuesday to register for the 2004 crop Direct and Counter-cyclical Payment program from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The 2002 Farm Bill requires that producers sign annual contracts through 2007 to participate in the DCP program. A $100 late fee will be charged for registration after Tuesday.

Producers should contact the local Farm Service Agency in Westminster at 410-848-2780 for an application. Producers will not be able to sign up for 2004 DCP payments after Sept. 30.

Producers may opt out of the program any year. Any farm enrolled in the 2004 DCP will retain eligibility for the 2005 and subsequent DCP programs.

Producers may access DCP enrollment forms on the Farm Service Agency's Web site, www.fsa.usda.gov, and submit them at their local service center.

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