Stop more farmland development in southeast county!

“Three hundred MORE acres of farmland to housing? Please speak up...more water pollution, traffic congestion and accidents, overcrowded schools...”Page 2 “Three hundred MORE acres of farmland to housing? Please speak up...more water pollution, traffic congestion and accidents, overcrowded schools...”

Register NOW to adopt a grid – 4 hours/year of volunteer time ONLY

DOWNLOAD REGISTRATION FORM HERE!

It’s easy, it’s fun, it’s relaxing and only requires 4 hours of your time each year.  Moreover the help you give IS SO VERY IMPORTANT to collective efforts of many people and organizations working to help clean up our waters in Frederick County.

There is cause for concern about our streams’ health in Frederick County.  You can help change that.  Please start now.

Read more.  REGISTER NOW!

Thank you.

8/24/13 FNP: New Market reconsiders annexation plans

 

New Market reconsiders

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read entire article here.

4/16/13 – COMMENTS SOUGHT ON OVERSIGHT OF “DUAL USE” BIO RESEARCH

Members of the public are invited to comment on the feasibility and desirability of various forms of institutional oversight at federally-funded institutions that perform research involving certain pathogens or toxins.

“Certain types of research that are conducted for legitimate purposes may also be utilized for harmful purposes. Such research is called ‘dual use research’,” said a Notice filed in the Federal Register Friday by the Office of Science and Technology Policy.

“Dual use research of concern (DURC) is a smaller subset of dual use research defined as life sciences research that, based on current understanding, can be reasonably anticipated to provide knowledge, information, products, or technologies that could be directly misapplied to pose a significant threat with broad potential consequences to public health and safety, agricultural crops and other plants, animals, the environment, materiel, or national security,” the OSTP Noticeexplained.

The term “dual use research of concern” should not be taken in a pejorative sense, OSTP said.

“Research that meets the definition of DURC often increases our understanding of the biology of pathogens and makes critical contributions to the development of new treatments and diagnostics, improvements in public health surveillance, and the enhancement of emergency preparedness and response efforts. Thus, designating research as DURC should not be seen as a negative categorization, but simply an indication that the research may warrant additional oversight in order to reduce the risks that the knowledge, information, products, or technologies generated could be used in a manner that results in harm. As a general matter, designation of research as DURC does not mean that the research should not be conducted or communicated.”

In the February 22 Federal Register Notice, OSTP posed a series of questions concerning potential oversight arrangements for dual use research of concern and solicited feedback from interested members of the public.

Please send Beth Willis (mcbeth@mac.com) the following if you want to sign on to these comments.  They will be submitted to the Office of Science and Technology Policy on April 19. 
Name, title, (if relevant)
Organization,(if relevant)
City and State
You can sign on for an organization, or as “member, (name of organization).” or just as yourself.
PLEASE CIRCULATE WIDELY SO WE CAN GET AS MANY SIGNATURES AS POSSIBLE.  I will put my name and contact info on, others do not need to.  
DEADLINE:  Thursday April 18th.
Thanks for considering this sign on comment document and apologies for the short time frame.
Beth Willis
Frederick Citizens for Biolab Safety
Frederick, MD

Casey farm (639 acres) in New Market on list for 1000 home development

639 acres to become a planned unit developmen

639 acres to become a planned unit development

To learn more please click here for the Casey Property PUD fact sheet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Map below shows streams surrounded by floodplain, forest (green) and blue for ponds and wetlands.

natural resource features on Casey property

natural resource features on Casey property

3/12/13 How Fort Detrick might affect public health

University of Maryland PhD candidate Ed Kruse will be conducting community health surveys related to  Middletown, Fort Detrick, and Walkersville. Middletown has been asked to introduce Ed Kruse to the community at a date yet to be decided.

Kruse’s work will look into how Fort Detrick may have affected the health of residents in the surrounding area. Researchers at Johns Hopkins Public Health have already revealed some startling news of leaking from Fort Detrick’s waste bins being related to cancer in the surrounding communities.

Check out these interesting articles concerning their research:

“It Would Break Your Heart”; science vs. experience in a cancer cluster investigation

“After Words”; Our Most Intimate Adversary

2/7/13 Citizen concerned with over-development in Frederick County, water pollution, crowded schools, trash and tax increases

 Already in trouble

Originally published February 07, 2013 in the Frederick News Post

I am dismayed to see that the Maryland Department of Planning reports that our county is allowing septic systems that will have an adverse effect on the Chesapeake Bay. The objection is land consumption and water pollution. So let’s look at the list of objections to over-development in Frederick County.Or schools are now using trailers and our roads are overcrowded. At 0600 hours on commute any day I-270 is doing 30 mph or slower at Md. 109. If septic systems are bad for the bay, I would presume that they would be worse for the local water supply, which I believe is not that great anyway. All the water runoff, the overuse of a limited water supply, and schools that are overcrowded already is too much to handle. Why are we building subdivisions? Where will the trash from all this go? In the incinerator we cannot afford?It seems the commissioners do not have the interest of the residents at heart. I thought there was no money. Do not be fooled, all this development will not come near to generating the money necessary to support all this activity. Taxes have to go up — really up.

 

WILLIAM DOLAN

Mount Airy

1/7/13 New Market on fast track to double size of town

Monday, January 7th at 7pm, New Market held a public hearing,Rural Monrovia

over 50 people turned out to learn more about the annexation plans.  The mayor and council made no presentation for the crowd, and told people to submit their questions in writing.  Read about the hearing in the Frederick Newspost:   Dozens turn out for New Market annex debate

 

FoFC presented Mayor Burhans and the Town Council with a letter  detailing the legal issues with the annexation proposals, and made the following points in testimony:

pg1  Public Hearing testimony 1_7_13

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

pg 2 testimony 1_7_13

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EIP report: Frederick County discharges 111,158 pounds of nitrogen/year over permitted level

Last week the Environmental Integrity Project released its report The Clean Water Act and the Chesapeake: Enforcement’s Critical Role in Restoring the Bay (December 2012)  Appendix A in that report shows the Ballenger McKinney Waste Water Treatment Plant discharging  111,158 pounds of nitrogen each year over the permitted level.  It is the worst offender in the entire Chesapeake Bay watershed.

“Far too much nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment pollution choke the Chesapeake Bay, making it impossible to sustain a healthy watershed.TItle page EIP report To restore the Bay and protect aquatic life, users will have to meet a pollution diet – a diet that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has already set by establishing “Total Maximum Daily Loads” (TMDLs) to reduce nitrogen and phosphorus loadings to the Bay by 25% by 2025, and sediment loadings by 20%.1 Measured in pounds, that means decreasing the nitrogen that flows to the Bay by more than fifty million pounds a year; phosphorous by more than three million pounds; and sediment by more than one and a quarter billion pounds.”

Appendix A EIP report

FNP letter: Handouts to the elite development set

Handouts to the elite development set

Originally published November 11, 2012

County Commissioners President Blaine Young often says that Frederick County is not business-friendly and that the county has been anti-development. The problem with Blaine’s views is that the facts do not accommodate his empty arguments.From 2000 to 2010, Frederick County grew at a rate of 19.5 percent. Only two other counties grew at a faster rate. The state of Maryland grew at a rate of 9 percent. Twenty percent in 10 years is not enough for Blaine Young, because there is so much more money to be made — consequences be damned.

He is not business-friendly, but business-obsessed, and irrationally supportive of welfare for developers, caring little about the consequences his development-at-all-costs policies will have in the future. Frederick County has not been anti-development, and if the county is so hostile to developers, then how did the developments of Spring Ridge, Glenbrook, Brunswick Crossing and countless others occur? If developers are victims of bad policy, then how were they able to accommodate the housing needs of over 30,000 new residents from 2000 to 2010?

Why is Blaine Young so adamant about taking the same exact path that neighboring counties have when it comes to development? When people are sitting in miles of traffic years from now, they will know whom to thank. He seems to care little about current and future traffic congestion, which was highlighted when he decided to lower the tax developers had to pay, which went into a transportation infrastructure fund. The goal for Blaine is to make Frederick County look more like Tysons Corner, and then future generations will have to play catch up 30 years later for transportation needs, as we are seeing in Tysons right now.

Developers may strongly support Young’s policies. The problem is most people in Frederick County aren’t developers and he is accountable to all county residents, not just those responsible for much of his campaign support. Wealthy developers get a tax cut, yet those in need get their services cut.

The future success of Frederick County growth does not depend on the policy of build now, pay for infrastructure later. The county is in an advantageous position because of its location in one of the wealthiest states in the country, its proximity to the base of the federal government and three of the wealthiest counties in the country: Loudoun County, Va., Howard and Montgomery. But that doesn’t mean we have to travel down the same road of growth.

The desirability of Frederick County will be a result of a well-thought-out approach to growth and development, not one in which Blaine Young and developers have free rein, as they have no incentive to combat future traffic and school congestion, but only make money off new construction and do everything in their power to increase their profit margins. I never realized that developers were so impoverished to begin with.

In the next 10 years, do we want a growth rate of 20 percent? Blaine seems more supportive of 40 to 50 percent growth, and radically altering the landscape and character of the county. But as long as his developer cronies are making more money, it’s fine with Blaine.

A growth rate of 19.5 percent is business- and developer-unfriendly? Since when? Of course, for Young, government intervention is necessary not to help the most vulnerable, but for developers looking to increase their profit margins.

For Blaine, benefits for developers are also more important than raises for teachers in Frederick County. Frederick County is the eighth wealthiest county in the state, yet the teachers pay is ranked 22nd out of 24. Doesn’t a successful business environment depend on the recruiting and retention of high-quality educators? Once again, Blaine fails to make the connection. Compensating teachers what they deserve is simple fairness, yet Blaine prefers corporate welfare and developer handouts over providing Frederick County Public Schools teachers with what they deserve.

One would think by looking at neighboring counties that chasing revenue via mass development is not a well-thought-out strategy, unless appropriate transportation infrastructure and uncrowded schools can be realized. By slashing the fee developers had to pay for future infrastructure needs, Young unapologetically indicates that the only thing that matters for this county is more development, and everything else, including teachers pay, school crowding, and well-thought-out infrastructure, will continue to take a back seat to Blaine’s building buddies.

Frank Clements writes from Knoxville.