Lack of county oversight a troubling discovery
The Calvert Neighborhood Alliance would like to take this opportunity to inform the Cecil County citizens of the following developments.
Last year, a 2.2-milliongallon manure tank was built in the county along with a 90-foot silo. The cost of these structures was over $500,000. Through proper due diligence, it was discovered that both structures were built without any permitting done by either the owner of the property, the builder or the county.
The lawyer for our Alliance contacted the county to communicate to them our serious concerns about this development.
The county’s response was to issue a permit over a year after the structure was built and waive any inspection of both structures. The only charge to the property owner was a $140 fine. No actions were taken against the builder.
On Nov. 16 members of the Calvert Neighborhood Alliance met with county officials to question the action taken by county.
The county admitted that the structures were never permitted by the county prior to construction. They also stated that this happens often when dealing with farm structures. When asked about the property owners and builders being fined for breaking the law, their answer was even more upsetting.
First, they were asked what sort of fine would cover this act and they didn’t know.
Second, they guessed the fine would be around $400 to $500 against the builder but did not state the fine against the property owner. Nobody in the room would state for the record that they knew for sure what the fine would be.
Third, the county officials then stated is would not be “worth their while” to fine either party because the legal cost would outweigh the fine.
The county officials then presented a report from a third party engineering firm that stated they the manure tank was built following the manufacturer guidelines and the engineering firm would stand by the structure. The report never stated if the engineering firm ever inspected the foundation or explained how this report was compiled. The county would not allow us to have a copy of the report. The only thing that the county officials were concerned about was the fact that now the li- ability of this 2.2-million-gallon manure tank falls on the engineering firm not on the county. The county officials also stated that this is common practice on their part.
You would think the county would insist on involvement in all building projects during their construction and not after the fact, especially large projects such as this one. Given that this manure tank can store over 2 million gallons of manure, the county should have been actively involved in all steps of their construction for safety and environmental reasons.
After hearing the way the county operates with regard to permits, why would any Cecil County resident bother to apply for a permit? If a law broken in this specific case, why were no actions or fines brought on those people who ignored the proper procedures which are clearly written in our building codes?
If Cecil County Government can’t monitor and enforce its own permitting process, what hope do the citizens of Cecil County have in its successful monitoring of industrial-sized poultry operations that will have a direct effect on the environment and the health and livelihood of Cecil County residents? Likewise, Delmarva’s farmers have implemented environmentally friendly best practices, and continue to do so.
All too often, we hear only the shouting at the extreme ends, with confrontation, the laying of blame and defensiveness making headlines. Progress, however, will come from those who want to move toward a productive common ground. As we look forward to a New Year, let’s resolve that it’s time to end the food fight and work together for Delmarva, agriculture and the environment. self-praise. She described her management style as patient, methodical, “tough and firm but gentle at the same time,” honest, candid, “very deferential and respectful,” and “with a big smile.”
But after this ugly campaign, Conway and her boss will need more than a big smile. “I was always raised to respect the office of the presidency and its current occupant,” said the woman whose boss led the campaign questioning the current president’s legitimacy as a nativeborn American.
Americans respect the presidency, but Trump will have to earn respect. And you don’t earn that by running a campaign that stirred up misogyny and gender-role resentment — and then proclaiming it a victory for women. by things done to them.
Such people are susceptible to charismatic presidential leadership, with its promise that executive power without limits can deliver them from unhappiness by delivering to them public goods. In contrast, there was dignity in the Joad family (of John Steinbeck’s “The Grapes of Wrath”). When the Dust Bowl smothered Oklahoma, the Joads were not enervated, they moved west in search of work.
What formerly was called conservatism resisted the permeation of society by politics, and particularly by the sort of unconstrained executive power that has been wielded by the 44th president. The man who will be the 45th forthrightly and comprehensively repudiates the traditional conservative agenda and, in reversing it, embraces his predecessor’s executive swagger.