Thanks for Dan Rodricks' column championing the mandatory Program Open Space funds ("Marylanders need to speak up for open space," April 1).

Program Open Space offers a bit of balance to development. When you buy real estate, you take up some of Maryland's space. The POS transfer tax is a tiny portion of that transaction that provides outdoor recreational space for adults and children.

Projects that Program Open Space funds have helped create and enhance include Cylburn, a horticultural educational park in Baltimore City, Fair Hill, Green Ridge State Park, Appalachian Trail protection on South Mountain and Meadowlands in Baltimore County.

Meadowlands has several different fields that serve young teams from all over the state all day long. On its outer rim is a long trail for dog walkers, runners, seniors and a playground for toddlers.

Aside from the offsets to development that help protect out watersheds, these natural outlets are healthier, more fun and preferable to having funding diverted to the government's administrative budget.

Ellen H. Kelly, Baltimore

The writer is co-chair of Legislation Committee Federated Garden Clubs of Maryland.

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