Planning Board considers special exception to allow Daisy retreat center Residents want hearing postponed

The Howard County Planning Board is to hear testimony this morning on whether a Daisy property can be used as a retreat for people who care for the terminally ill.

Terrific Inc. -- Temporary Emergency Residential Resource Institute for Families in Crisis -- is seeking a special exception to allow it to operate a retreat center on a 32-acre parcel on Ed Warfield Road.


The private, nonprofit organization provides housing and services for terminally ill inner-city children,the elderly and the disabled.

Some residents oppose the special exception, saying they fear the corporation that owns the property will turn it into a corporate retreat. They plan to ask the Planning Board to postpone today's hearing.


After the testimony, the planning board will make a recommendation to the county Board of Appeals, which will decide whether to grant or deny the petition after its own public hearing.

The staff of the county Department of Planning and Zoning originally recommended rejecting the special exception, citing the vagueness of Terrific's plans.

But Planning and Zoning Director Joseph W. Rutter said yesterday that Terrific has submitted more detailed plans, and a revised planning staff report recommends that the special exception be granted, with conditions.

Those conditions stipulate:

* That no corporate board meetings be held on the property.

* That there be no more than two retreats per month.

L * That the retreats last no more than a total of eight days.

* That no more than nine non residents, including one coordinator, be allowed on the property for retreats.


* That no more than three vehicles be allowed on the site at one time, which would mean that people attending the retreat would have to share vehicles.

* That a new driveway be installed, so the site will not use a driveway shared with neighbors.