Carroll Digest

CARROLL DIGEST

October 30, 2005

Red-light cameras rejected in Carroll

Citing mounting opposition from residents concerned about privacy, the Carroll County Commissioners decided not to pursue installation of red-light cameras at several dangerous intersections.

The cameras would snap a photograph of any vehicles running a red light. Police officers would review the photos and those motorists would be subjected to a civil citation and possibly a fine. The intent of the program was to reduce accidents, not generate revenue, officials said.

"There is a bias against the idea," said Commissioner Dean L. Minnich. "It would be a waste of staff time to pursue this."

Commissioner Perry L. Jones said he had received numerous correspondence from opponents of the proposal. "People are saying it would be a violation of their privacy," he said. "They are also saying we are not interested in public safety and that we are just trying to get more money."

At the urging of law enforcement officials, the commissioners floated the idea earlier this month. "We wanted open dialogue on this issue," Minnich said. "Instead, it got out there that this is what the commissioners wanted."

Group seeking help for Gulf Coast

Volunteers in purple T-shirts printed with "I decided to help not once but for a lifetime" will be at the 140 Village Shopping Center tomorrow through Nov. 12 collecting relief supplies for the Gulf Coast.

They plan to make a third and final trip to the hurricane-devastated area Nov. 26, carrying several truckloads of cleaning supplies, nonperishable food and bottled water.

"We not only take goods, but we stay and help," said Rosalind Blakey, a Westminster business owner who has organized a countywide relief drive and traveled twice to Louisiana and Mississippi in the past two months.

The last drive will focus on brooms, mops, rubber gloves and boots, mildew-resistant masks and flat-bottomed shovels as well as food and water. The group is also asking for monetary donations, which can be mailed to P.O. Box 2331, Westminster 21158.

Volunteers will accept donations from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the shopping center on Route 140 in Westminster. Information: 443-722-8631.

County plan meetings to end

The first set of meetings in the Early Fall 2005 Grassroots Gatherings will end this week.

The final meeting will be held for the Winfield/Taylorsville area at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Winfield fire hall.

More than 100 people participated in the first series of meetings, with more attending the second sessions.

The meetings were designed to introduce residents to the community outreach and participation process for the Carroll County Comprehensive Plan, titled the "Pathways Plan."

The goal also is to bring residents together in cohesive groups representing various interests in their community, and form good working relationships.

For residents who were not able to attend their community's first meeting, but are interested in participating in the future, a make-up session will be held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in Room 003 of the County Office Building, 225 N. Center St., Westminster.

Materials provided at the first set of meetings are available on the Pathways Web site (carrollpathways.org). The three videos shown as part of the agenda also will be available for checkout at Carroll County public library branches next month.

Information: 410-386-2145.

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