Edgewood community considering incorporation

November 14, 2007|By Mary Gail Hare

Residents of Harford County's most populated unincorporated area are mulling becoming the county's largest municipality.

At a meeting tonight, community leaders in Edgewood, an area of 23,000 residents along the U.S. 40 corridor at the southern end of the county, will discuss incorporating.

Edgewood is represented on the County Council, but some residents say they believe they lack a local voice in what happens to their community.

The Edgewood Community Council will take up the issue at its meeting tonight as a tentative exploration of the process, said Jensen Robinson, president of the 14-member council.

"People are saying, `Why not do something for ourselves and become a city?'" Robinson said. "Rather than dismiss those requests, we are starting a dialogue so that we can make an informed decision."

Incorporation would add another layer of taxes in what is one of the county's needier areas, where average incomes fall below the county median.

"It means higher taxes, but it also means we will have some say-so in what happens in our community," Robinson said.

The expansion at Aberdeen Proving Ground as a result of the military base realignment known as BRAC promises about 10,000 new jobs on base and thousands more residents.

"Incorporation puts us in a better position as far BRAC development goes," Robinson said.

A petition to incorporate must be signed by 25 percent - about 3,000 - of the registered voters in the area. It must win County Council approval and go to referendum.

The council, spurred by much opposition from the neighborhood, denied an incorporation petition 10 years ago.

The meeting is scheduled for 7 o'clock tonight at Edgewood Community Center, 1980 Brookside Drive.

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