Board of County Commissioners Meeting: Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Board of County Commissioners Meeting
Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Acting Human Resources Administrator Cindy Mowen brought Kenneth Showe before the Board for introductions. Showe was recently hired as a Project Manager in the Department of Water Quality
Each week the Board of County Commissioners sets aside time to hear from citizens of Washington County on matters of importance to the community.
A group of parents, students and teachers from Fountain Rock Elementary School requested that the Board provide funding for a cafeteria at that school.
John Himes of Knoxville addressed the Commissioners regarding traffic control and trash dumping issues.
Daniel Moeller of Rohrersville commented on the Board of Education retirement plan and the County's deferred compensation program.
Director of Special Projects (DSP) Gary Rohrer brought this request, to accept a memorandum of understanding (MOU) for construction of the U.S, 40/Edgewood Drive intersection with the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) and the City of Hagerstown, with modifications. SHA has developed two memoranda of understanding. One is for the joint project with the SHA and the City for the intersection proper and the other is between SHA and the County for the reconstruction of Edgewood Drive from the City line to Mt. Aetna Road. Both agreements cover acquisition of rights-of-way, utility costs, construction, and construction inspection and administration. Rohrer said that of primary concern are SHA's markups for contingencies, overhead, and administrative costs. The entire project was initially estimated to cost $12 million including design, rights-of-way, utility relocation, and construction. Since then, the estimate has risen sharply due to increases in paving, driven by oil increases, and other raw materials such as concrete and had an early May estimate of $16.4 million. Our recent suggestions to SHA brought the estimate down to $14.4 million. According to appraisers, right-of-way estimates have risen from $3.2 million to as high as $6 million in the area in anticipation of the new hospital. Recent changes proposed by local staff brought that estimate down to $3.25 million. Other factors aggravating the cost include 15% for contingencies, 15.3% for SHA's construction overhead, and 8.2% for SHA's administrative overhead. A similar situation exists with the MOU for Construction on the County's portion of Edgewood, Rohrer said. Public Works Director Joe Kroboth commented that the state expects the County to pay overhead charges for that state highway intersection, yet is not contributing money to the Maugans Avenue/Pennsylvania Avenue interchange, also a state road. The City and County should get together and argue that point with the state, Kroboth said. A letter to the state would lay the groundwork for that negotiation, Rohrer said, and a joint agreement with the City of Hagerstown would be developed. County and City officials would meet with State Highway Officials and present the case.