Farmers complain about new proposed building code
During a public hearing Tuesday on a proposed new Washington County building code, the chief complaint was about a possible change affecting agricultural structures.
Farmers who spoke objected to having those buildings meet all structural codes if they are used for human occupancy.
Steve Ernst said such a mandate could turn farmers away from doing business in Washington County.
Matt Harsh said there was a potential for an unfair interpretation, even if farm buildings are open only to employees.
“We just don’t need any more harassment,” David Herbst said.
A committee proposed changes to the county’s building code, which must be reviewed and updated every three years.
Also during Tuesday’s public hearing, two fire officials — Larry Iseminger, a chief fire protection engineer for the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office, and Dale Hill, president of the Washington County Volunteer Fire and Rescue Association — spoke in favor of requiring sprinklers in residential buildings.
“There is no justifiable reason to delay the implementation of this life saving technology,” Iseminger wrote in a letter to the commissioners.
Hill said sprinklers help keep firefighters safe.
Rob Smith, who is retired from the Washington County Department of Permits and Inspections, said serious code violations need to be enforced to protect citizens from inferior construction.
The Washington County Board of Commissioners expects to talk more about the proposed code later this month.
TEA Party rep asks county to adopt program enforcing illegal immigration
Representing the Hagerstown TEA, or Taxed Enough Already, Party, Nancy Allen asked the Washington County Board of County Commissioners on Tuesday to adopt a federal program to enforce illegal immigration.
Allen said she was following up on a letter her group wrote in January, asking the county to work with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement on the 287(g) program.
Frederick County Sheriff Charles A. Jenkins has offered to speak about the program, Allen told the commissioners.
Commissioners approve purchase of easement near Chestnut Grove and Trego Mountain roads
The Washington County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously on Tuesday to approve the purchase of the Morgan Family Trust LLP Easement near Chestnut Grove and Trego Mountain roads.
The price will be $37,004.40 for 10 acres of easement, funded by a state land-preservation program, according to a county document summarizing the transaction.