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Fingers being pointed over rejection of Fallston Middle School proposal

From The Aegis dated Feb. 4, 1988:

Fingers were being pointed this way and that 25 years ago this week after the proposed Fallston Middle School was turned down by the Maryland Board of Public Works.

School and county officials were blaming members of the local delegation to the Maryland General Assembly, while the delegation members said the local school leader had "screwed up the data" prompting the turn-down.

With the rejection, the proposed school officials had hoped would be ready to open in September 1991 would be delayed for at least a year.

A week earlier, Superintendent A.A. Roberty and some school board members made a presentation to the board of public works, which had the power to overturn the decision by the Interagency Committee on School Construction to reject the $10.4 million project. The IAC said taking sixth-graders out of Youth's Benefit Elementary and seventh- and eighth-graders out of the Fallston High building would leave too many empty seats in the high school building.

Also 25 years ago this week, the shutdown of Peach Bottom Atomic Plant nearly a year earlier was being called "an embarrassment to the industry and to the nation." A letter from the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations blasted Peach Bottom and its parent company, Philadelphia Electric, calling the situation that led to the shutdown "more widespread or more serious" than anyone had realized to that point.

He added that the "lethargic and defensive corporate organization" that fostered the "grossly unprofessional behavior by a wide rang of shift personnel" at Peach Bottom had not improved, and may have gotten worse in the months since the Nuclear Regulatory Commission ordered the shutdown.

Harford County and baseball's first family, the Ripkens, were to be honored 25 years ago at a dinner saluting them. Before the dinner, the family gathered for a photo in the Ripkens' home. Included in the picture were Cal Sr. and Vi Ripken, Cal Sr.'s mother Clara Ripken, all the Ripken siblings, Cal Jr., Elly, Bill and Fred, and Fred's daughter, Austyn.

It didn't appear that Harford legislators would be introducing during the Maryland General Assembly 25 years ago this week a bill to get slot machines for non-profit clubs.

Delegation chair Del. Eileen Rehrmann said she didn't think it would have enough support from the delegation and said the members would likely hold it over to the 1989 session so they could make a more informed decision.

The city of Havre de Grace was set to grow by 146 acres 25 years ago this week with the annexation of the farm owned by George Pensell. The developers had planned 336 single-family homes and 200 townhouses on the land, which was zoned R1 and R2, but local residents urged the city to lower the density and number of homes that could be built. They also wanted to wait and see what impact the development of Bayview Estates, the 107-acre tract on Chapel Road where 300 homes were planned, would have on the area.

Plans for the county to buy 22 acres on the "relocated Route 24" next to the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration for a new recreation center were "dead" this week 25 years ago.

Opposition from the nearby Wakefield community was the biggest reason the county backed off the proposal to buy the property for $12,500 an acre.

"There were just too many complications – if they don't want a recreation center I'm not going to force the issue," Harford County Executive Habern Freeman said, adding the county would instead look at part of the 430 acres the county owns at Heavenly Waters Park for recreation fields.

Frank Green listened in the courtroom as he confessed on tape to shooting four police officers in Havre de Grace 16 months earlier.

On trial in Annapolis for the murder of a Maryland Transportation Authority Police officer, Green kept his head low, looking up occasionally to jot down some notes.

In the taped confession, Green cried, said he was sorry and asked to die.

"When am I going to be executed?" he asked three times. "I want to be executed, I'm tired of this…"

The Phantom Fondler may have surfaced again 25 years ago in Edgewood, where three women reported they awoke to find an intruder either standing or lying beside their beds.

"There is a possibility that it is him," a sheriff's office spokesman said.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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