Carroll Digest

CARROLL DIGEST

July 16, 2006

Animal treatment measures proposed

Nicky Ratliff, executive director of the Humane Society of Carroll County Inc., recently presented to the county commissioners proposed amendments to Chapter 81 of the Code of Public Local Laws and Ordinances of Carroll County related to Animals.

The proposed amendments would modify: definitions; provisions related to licensing and permits, including increasing fees; requirements for restraining of dogs; authority of Animal Control for impounding animals; requirements for disposing of dead animals.

New sections would be created on: wild animals; vicious or dangerous animals; proper outdoor dog shelter, care, and protection; animal behavior and appeal actions; and enforcement provisions.

The commissioners will hold a public hearing on the proposed amendments at 7 p.m. tomorrow in Room 003 of the County Office Building.

Copies of the proposed draft amendments are available on the county's Web site (ccgovernment.carr.org) and through the county attorney at 410-386-2030.

Code home rule meetings are set

The county commissioners have scheduled informational workshops across the county for residents interested in learning more about the code home rule form of government, ahead of two public hearings on whether Carroll should adopt that form of government.

Code home rule is one of three forms of county government in Maryland. The other two are commissioner (Carroll's current form) and charter.

Workshops will be conducted by Victor K. Tervala, of the University of Maryland's Institute for Governmental Service. His book, Home Rule Options in Maryland, is available at the Carroll County Public Library.

The final workshops will be held at 7 p.m. as follows:

Tuesday at North Carroll Middle School, 401 Hanover Pike, Greenmount

Thursday at Francis Scott Key High School, 3825 Bark Hill Road, near Uniontown Information: 410-386-2973.

Comments also may be sent to the County Attorney's Office, 225 N. Center St., Westminster 21157. Public hearings will be held at 7 p.m. as follows:

July 25 at Oklahoma Road Middle School on Oklahoma Road off Liberty Road, Eldersburg

Aug. 1 at the County Office Building, 225 N. Center St., Westminster Information: 410-386-2030.

$909,951 for projects is approved

The Carroll County commissioners have approved $909,951 of the county's 2007 Program Open Space allocation for 15 municipal projects.

Carroll County allocates 25 percent of each year's open space funds for municipal projects. Town park plans require a 10 percent match of local funds, split evenly between the municipalities and the county.

This year's selected projects are:

Hampstead: Municipal Park phase V ($177,480), Oden Kemp Park ($58,500)

Manchester: Christmas Tree Park improvements ($13,500), Pine Valley Park pavilion ($31,500)

Mount Airy: Summit Ridge baseball field ($16,200), Watkins Park restroom ($26,190), Wildwood Park fence ($10,800)

Sykesville: Warfield Commerce and Cultural Center Park ($204,840)

Taneytown: Memorial Park tennis courts ($105,300), Copperfield playground ($40,171), property acquisition ($40,000)

Westminster: Skate Park renovation ($45,000), Fenby Farm Quarry/Lime Kiln Park ($45,000), city basketball court renovation ($36,000), City Park multipurpose building ($59,470)

Homeowners urged to seek tax relief

Del. Susan Krebs is urging qualified Carroll homeowners to seek property tax relief under a newly expanded tax credit program.

Households with incomes up to $60,000 may be eligible for a tax break if their property tax assessment does not exceed $300,000.

The maximum assessment was doubled under a bill passed unanimously in March by the Maryland General Assembly to help protect homeowners from being forced out of their homes.

The state also has extended the filing deadline for the new tax program until Oct. 31. Applications may be obtained through Krebs' office at 410-841-3200, or online at www.dat.state.md.us.

County government honored for quality

Carroll County government recently won five achievement awards from the National Association of Counties for programs that promote quality and efficiency.

The projects and their departments that received certificates are:

Comprehensive interagency system of care for violence prevention, local management board

Expansion of purchasing powers to allied agencies, general services/purchasing

Take-home vehicle database, performance auditing

Carroll County Regional Airport master plan development, performance auditing

Resident survey of existing and potential services, public information

To earn NACo achievement awards, programs must be innovative, produce measurable results and promote government accountability.

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