Baltimore County Digest


February 09, 2007

5 from Congress urge Corps to reject LNG

Maryland's two U.S. senators, along with three congressmen from the state, are urging the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to reject a request from the company that wants to build a liquefied natural gas facility on Sparrows Point to dredge a portion of the Patapsco River.

In a letter sent yesterday to the commander of the Corps' Baltimore district, the legislators say they object to the proposed dredging because of environmental concerns and a potential negative effect on port of Baltimore traffic and recreational boaters.

"Specifically, AES' permit application fails to address how the company plans to dispose of up to 4 million cubic yards of dredged material - including contaminated material - for the project, in an environmentally sound and viable manner," the letter states. It was signed by U.S. Sens. Benjamin L. Cardin and Barbara A. Mikulski and U.S. Reps. Elijah E. Cummings, C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger and John Sarbanes.

AES Corp. filed a request Jan. 9 with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers seeking permission to dredge a 117-acre area near the shipyard, according to Corps officials. The application indicates that the company intends to either recycle dredge materials at a facility it would construct on Sparrows Point or dispose of the dredge materials in the ocean.

The company needs to dredge the area to accommodate large tankers that would bring the imported liquid gas to the terminal, where it would be processed and then pumped, as a gas, through an 88-mile pipeline to southern Pennsylvania for distribution, according to the AES proposal.

AES' project manager, Kent Morton, said in a statement Wednesday, "AES continues to underscore the safety, jobs, new taxes for the State and environmental benefits of the proposed LNG facility at Sparrows Point, and AES looks forward to the possibility of supplying Marylanders and the region with a reliable and affordable supply of natural gas."

Laura Barnhardt


KCI to build `green' headquarters

A Hunt Valley-based engineering firm plans to build a "green" - or environmentally friendly - building in Baltimore County for its new headquarters in Sparks, officials said yesterday.

KCI Technologies plans to move to a four-story, 120,000-square-foot building designed to meet national green building standards in the Highlands Corporate Office Park, said Fronda J. Cohen, a spokeswoman for Baltimore County's Department of Economic Development.

Construction on the $30 million project is expected to be complete in the fall of 2008, the spokeswoman said. Cignal Corp. in Timonium is the builder.

KCI employs about 300 engineers, environmental scientists and planners, and intends to increase its number of employees to about 400 after the move, Cohen said.

The company will be among the first in the county to meet the standards of the U.S. Green Building Council, Cohen said. Century Engineering opened an "all green" commercial building in Hunt Valley in the fall, she said.

Laura Barnhardt

Dundalk grocery

2 men sought in break-in attempt

Baltimore County police were searching for two men in connection with an attempted burglary of a Dundalk grocery store.

Two men tried to break into the Box and Save store in the 3400 block of Dundalk Ave. about 3:30 a.m. Jan 28, county police said. The men tried to get into the store by smashing a front window, but a tape from a video camera showed that they never made their way into the store, and nothing was disturbed or taken, police said.

Police said similarities were found between that attempted burglary and three other burglaries in the Dundalk area: about 1 a.m. Dec. 22 at a High's convenience store in the 6800 block of Broening Road; about 3 a.m. Dec. 23 at the Blue Claw Crab House in the 3400 block of Dundalk Ave.; and about 2:30 a.m. Dec. 30 at the B&K Carryout in the 7900 block of Dundalk Ave.

The suspects were described as: a black man in his 20s, with a thin build and short dark hair, wearing a black shirt, blue jeans and black shoes; and a black man in his 20s, with a thin build, short dark hair, wearing a black hooded sweat shirt with a light-colored design on front, and blue jeans.

Anyone with information was asked to call county police at 410-307-2020 or Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7LOCKUP. Callers to Metro Crime Stoppers can remain anonymous and could be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000.

Presidential award

8 are candidates for scholarships

Eight Baltimore County public school students are candidates to be named Presidential Scholars.

The national recognition program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, plans to select 141 Presidential Scholars - one male and one female from each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and from U.S. families living abroad as well as 15 at large and 20 Presidential Scholars in the Arts.

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