Carroll Digest

Carroll Digest

February 23, 2005

Commissioners OK $1 million loan to improve intersection

The Carroll County commissioners finalized yesterday a $1 million loan to the town of Sykesville for intersection improvements along Route 32. The state is contributing $4.5 million to the project that will create a new entrance from the highway into the town's business center, known as the Warfield Complex.

"This allows the project to be fully funded and move forward," said Steven D. Powell, the commissioners' chief of staff.

Commissioner Dean L. Minnich said the move should spur economic development.

"The county is stepping up to the plate and putting its money where its mouth is on investing in economic development," he said.

Interim government center for S. Carroll considered

Officials are pursuing options for establishing an interim government center in South Carroll, the most populous and rapidly growing area of the county.

"We need a small property to give us a presence, a town hall of sorts," said Neil Ridgely, county zoning administrator, who is directing the search. "We want to test the waters to see how this is perceived before making a grandiose effort."

Once the new South Carroll Senior Center is built in about two years, the commissioners will use the current senior center building for government offices. In the meantime, the Eldersburg library branch might have space for minor business transactions, such as building permit applications, Ridgely said.

If nothing else, the county will save Eldersburg residents drive time to Westminster, said Commissioner Perry L. Jones Jr. The county has recently increased the staff at its satellite police station in Eldersburg and augmented recreational facilities.

"The bottom line is, we are talking about providing better customer service with available resources for Eldersburg," said Commissioner Dean L. Minnich. "I would like to do this by re-allocating time and space and not spending more money."

School system honoring its teachers' aides today

The Carroll County public school system will observe Instructional Assistants' Day today to recognize the efforts of more than 300 teachers' aides who help educate students.

Instructional assistants offer individual help to students, help the teacher supervise the class and make the classroom more friendly and inviting for pupils. They also help distribute materials to students, check homework, administer spelling tests and assist with a variety of other activities.

They also help coordinate parent volunteers and help them to become more involved in lessons.

County awards contracts for park, courthouse work

The county commissioners awarded a $70,000 contract yesterday to Whitney, Bailey, Cox & Magnani LLC, the Baltimore company that will create a master plan for Krimgold Park in Woodbine. The county is still negotiating on three other park projects.

The board also awarded a $93,750 contract to Sungate Unlimited Inc. of Keymar for construction of a ramp and rebuilding of about 1,000 feet of sidewalk at the Courthouse Annex on Court Street in Westminster.

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