Hampstead council members voted in an emergency session Tuesday nightto award the town's three-year trash contract to Frederick Sanitation.
The company, which bid $76,969 for the first year, had been the low bidder of five submitted. Town officials initially were reluctant to award the contract to the company because it never had collected municipal trash.
But Hampstead Town Attorney Richard Murray said the council's April 11 decision to award the contract to Hughes Trash Removal, which had submitted a higher bid, would have been open to a legal challenge.
Mr. Murray said Frederick Sanitation could not be disqualified, because it was the lowest bidder and had met all the town's specifications in its original bid.
Hughes, near Hampstead, collected the town's garbage for several years before officials agreed in 1992 to join a unified trash contract with four other Carroll County municipalities.
* Lineboro: Lineboro and Manchester firefighters responded to a brush fire in the 4900 block of Roller Road at 6:44 p.m. Wednesday. They were out 45 minutes.