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The Contributions of Rural Maryland to Our Shared Quality of Life:
A Story of Misunderstanding & Neglect
Presented On behalf of  the
Maryland Rural Counties Coalition

Watch the Presentation on Youtube!

Part 1
, Part 2, Part 3
Part 4,
Part 5




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Allegany County Government Top News:


State of the County
January 1, 2014 – December 31, 2014

The Board of County Commissioners, 2014 - 2018: Left to right, Commissioner Creade V. Brodie, Jr., Commissioner Jacob C. Shade, and President William R. Valentine. 


2014 was a busy and productive year for the Board of County Commissioners of Allegany County.  Last year marked the first year during the modern era that a primary election for local and statewide offices was held in the month of June.   Incumbent members of the Board of County Commissioners, Creade V. Brodie and William R. Valentine, were re-elected to a second term on November 4, 2014.Former County Commissioner and Board President Michael W. McKay was elected to the vacant District 1C seat for the Maryland House of Delegates.  The incumbent county commissioners were joined by Jacob C. Shade who was sworn into office on December 18, 2014.  

2014 offered some hints that the national and state economies continue to lag from the long standing effects of the great recession.  State of Maryland revenue forecasts reveal a projected $300 million shortfall for the remainder of FY 2015. Excessive government regulation and tax increases adopted by the state during the past eight years continue to stifle economic growth here and across the state.  The county will continue to adopt a conservative approach to fiscal matters because of state projections and their impact upon county government. 

Repeating a common theme from previous years, the county continues to adapt to static public resources as we remain committed to delivering core local government services in an efficient manner. The number of employees under the auspices of the Board of County Commissioners is today 20% smaller than it was five years ago.  The capabilities of the county’s workforce have expanded and we rely more and more on advances in technology to support a leaner, more efficient government organization.   

Consistent with Resolution 11 - 12, the County Commissioners in 2014 reduced the real estate property tax by a tenth of a penny.  The County Commissioners worked very hard to pass and implement a balanced budget for FY 2015. Similar to previous years the process was a difficult one.  It is also important to note, that the county took official action last year to designate two years of teacher pension liability as part of the County’s fund balance reserve.

Our commitment to reduce the costs and the size of county government has been positively viewed by the Wall Street bond raters. In 2014 Standard and Poor’s Rating Services notified the county that it had joined Moody’s Investor Services in upgrading the county’s bond rating to AA status. The county’s rating aided in the successful procurement of public bonds to finance the construction of the new Allegany High School.  

The County’s Department of Finance was successful in receiving the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting. This acknowledges the county’s “spirit of full disclosure” to clearly communicate its financial story. This is the 22nd consecutive year that this award was received and appropriately demonstrates our Board’s commitment to transparency. 

There are several notable achievements to cite for 2014.  The Allegany County Opportunity Scholarship, funded by the county’s share of slot machine/video lottery terminal earnings at Rocky Gap Casino Resort, was awarded to students at both Allegany College of Maryland and Frostburg State University. Allegany County residents of all ages in all career and professional occupational pursuits are benefiting from this scholarship administered by these institutions. In 2014 ACM awarded over 200 Allegany County Opportunity Scholarships to Allegany County residents and FSU over 100.

The 2014 Allegany County Comprehensive Plan was formally accepted by the Allegany County Planning and Zoning Commission in May. The Board of County Commissioners wishes to take this opportunity to commend the volunteer members of the Planning and Zoning Commission for their tireless efforts in completing this multi-year planning exercise. 

It is important to note that Allegany County was a contributing partner in the Appalachian Mountain Innovative Readiness Training, a 10 day free health care clinic, held this past summer at the Allegany County Fairgrounds. This provided medical, dental, and vision care, including free prescription eyeglasses, to individuals and veterinary care for dogs and cats. This free care was provided to individuals of all income levels. 

The Department of Emergency Services continues to be responsible for the county coordination of preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation of man -made and natural disasters. The Bowling Green and Cresaptown communities endured a catastrophic flooding event last June.  We appreciate the assistance of the Maryland State Highway Administration in their efforts to complete a comprehensive analysis of the drainage issues in this area.   

Your county is committed to open and transparent government. Public business meetings continue to be provided live via the webcasts and are recorded to be viewed later on You Tube. The county held a number of public budget workshops and public hearings for budget requests. We also held other public meetings pertaining to specific issues, such as water and sewer projects.  In 2014, the county continued its tradition of taking public business meetings on-the-road. In 2014 we visited Oldtown residents at the volunteer fire department.  Furthermore, one of the county commissioners regularly attended the public meetings of all seven municipalities – Barton, Cumberland, Frostburg, Lonaconing, Luke, Midland, and Westernport. 
This year the county wishes to highlight key accomplishments of the county’s Department of Public Works and the Department of Economic and Community Development.  
The Department of Public Works continues to address infrastructure improvements.  Major water system improvements included a new county maintained system in Mount Savage and the second phase of a new system for the Rawlings Area. Eighty percent of Allegany County residents have access to public water. Major sewer improvement projects were completed in Mount Savage, Highland Estates, Eckhart, and Consol. 

Roads and Bridges
The county maintains 550 miles of public right of way. In 2014 the county completed 50 miles of chip and seal surfacing and new asphalt overlay projects for New School Road, Nemacolin Avenue, and Sunset View.  A unique and innovative project was completed with construction of the new Potomac Hollow Bridge. All totaled, Allegany County owns and maintains 140 bridges and was the only county in the state to receive federal funding through the Innovative Bridge Research and Deployment Program. 

Construction Projects
A notable project that will benefit our community for many years was the completion of a new Sheriff’s Office at the Allegany County Office Complex on Kelly Road in Cumberland. Allegany County Maintenance Division employees installed all the systems and completed the interior of the building. Land was also cleared for a future Fire Arms Training Center at the Public Safety Building on PPG Road. Other significant projects included the South Cumberland Public Library roof installation, Braddock Run stream restoration, a new waterline installation to the Allegany County Fairgrounds, and a parking lot project in Mount Savage completed in partnership with the Maryland State Highway Administration. 

Allegany County Government continues to administer a comprehensive residential and commercial recycling program and achieved a 34% recycling rate, substantially exceeding the 20% state mandated rate: 70,902,000 pounds of materials were recycled and 4,808,000 pounds of natural debris were composted in the most recent reportable year. 

Future Public Works Projects
The Department of Public Works will continue to focus on water and sewer infrastructure projects in 2015. The department will be overseeing the construction of a new shell building at Barton Business Park, improving the South Cumberland Public Library and the Allegany College of Maryland Technologies Building, enhancing access to the Great Allegheny Passage at Valley Street, and completing the new Fire Arms Training Center. 
It was also a productive year for the county’s Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD).

As recently announced, WebstaurantStore, a Lancaster, Pennsylvania based company, will open a warehouse and distribution center in the North Branch Industrial Park. The company purchased the 525,000 square foot former Kelly-Springfield warehouse there and plans to hire 150 employees over the next 12 months.  

Rocky Gap Casino Resort is now in its second year of operation under the ownership of Lakes Entertainment, Inc., Minnetonka, Minnesota. It has become a year round destination and employs 500 full and part-time individuals throughout the year.

Both American Woodmark Corporation and Hunter Douglas Fabrication have grown since opening facilities in Allegany County. American Woodmark came to Allegany County in 2004 and now has 500 employees. Hunter Douglas began operations here in the 1990’s and now has 860 employees and is the county’s largest manufacturing sector employer.

Broadband was expanded in the county in 2014. The county’s Department of Economic and Community Development worked with the state’s Department of Information Technology and the Maryland Broadband Cooperative to extend fiber along Route 220 South to the Barton Business Park. This project provided fiber to Bel Air Elementary School while enhancing the marketability of the Barton Business Park, and gives broadband options to other nearby employers. 

Appalachian Regional Commission funding was secured to construct an access road to a 20 +/- acres site in the Frostburg Business Park. Upon completion, this project is expected to create new business development and employment for the light manufacturing sector. 

The county continues to expand its efforts to collaborate with Frostburg State University by housing the State of Maryland’s Western Region Small Business Development Center at the Department of Economic and Community Development’s offices in Cumberland.  This partnership produced noteworthy results last year with the infusion of $10 million new dollars that resulted in the creation and retention of 80 jobs. Five hundred consulting hours were also provided and 48 unique clients received business counseling services. 

The Tri-County Council of Western Maryland continues to work with the Department of Economic and Community Development and the Small Business Development Center to promote small business assistance and development through its revolving loan fund. In addition, department staff continues to provide commercial development assistance and this effort has resulted in a large increase in commercial development, particularly in LaVale. Presently, there is a planned 50,000 square foot shopping center development scheduled for a 2015 opening in the Winchester Road corridor and a new Holiday Inn Express under construction on National Highway. Both of these projects have been the direct result of DECD staff working collaboratively with other economic development agencies to promote commercial, small business development. 

The Board of County Commissioners took formal action to authorize the design for the construction of a new shell building in the Barton Business Park. The construction of this 40,000 square foot facility will provide the county with an essential industrial building to market to advanced manufacturing firms. This project, done in partnership with the state, is part of the county’s mission to provide needed facilities to prospective businesses, particularly in the light/advanced manufacturing sector.

In conclusion as we proceed forward in 2015, the County Commissioners wish to affirm and emphasize our commitment and availability to all citizens and stakeholders. We appreciate your participation, value your viewpoints, and thank you for your on-going support and your interest in Allegany County Government. Our Board also wants to recognize the contributions of county staff throughout the past year. Our Board wishes one and all a happy, healthy, and prosperous new year.

Electronics Recycling - January 24, 2015

A special, free of charge electronics recycling event will be held on Saturday, January 24, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Penn-Mar Recycling Center, Riverside Industrial Park, Cumberland. This is for the residential items of Allegany County residents. Read More.

Maryland Governor-elect Hogan Speaking at PACE
MOUNTAIN MARYLAND PACE 2015 - Positive Attitudes Change Everything
“Empowering Maryland’s Future”
The Governor-elect’s Transition Team has confirmed that Governor-elect Larry Hogan will attend PACE according to J. Robert Smith, PACE 2015 Co-Chair. Hogan, who will take office on January 21, will be the keynote speaker at the breakfast on January 23. The PACE Committee wishes to recognize and thank State Senator George C. Edwards for his gracious assistance in extending this invitation to the newly elected Governor of Maryland.As previously announced, the Cumberland/Allegany County Industrial Foundation, Inc. (CACIF) and the Garrett County Development Corporation are hosting the PACE Reception on Thursday, January 22, 2015, 6:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. and the PACE Breakfast on Friday, January 23, 2015, 8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Both events are held at the Loews Annapolis Hotel, 126 West Street, Annapolis. The general public is warmly invited to support this important initiative for Mountain Maryland. Any individual may purchase the all inclusive ticket to attend both events, the PACE Reception and the PACE Breakfast. The price is $150 per person. PACE tickets are not available at the door at the two events. Ticket sales are scheduled to end on Friday, January 16, 2015. Checks should be made payable to Mountain Maryland PACE and mailed to Mountain Maryland PACE, PO Box 3273, LaVale, MD 21504-3273. PACE QUESTIONS? Deborah Martin, T 304.726.7040, F 304.726.7046 Website:

Maryland Association of Counties Conference: Commissioner Valentine is a member of the MACo Board of Directors and serves on the Legislative and the Education Committee. Commissioner Shade is enrolled in MACo’s special training program for newly elected county officials offered at the conference.

Maryland Association of Counties Conference 

Allegany County Commissioners William R. Valentine, Creade V. Brodie, Jr., and Jacob C. Shade, will participate in the Maryland Association of Counties (MACo) Winter Conference, January 7-9, 2015.  Five hundred individuals as well as speakers and exhibitors are expected at the conference which will be held on Maryland’s Eastern Shore at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Hotel in Cambridge. The theme of the conference is “The Road Ahead.” During the conference, local government officials will have the opportunity to gain knowledge and understanding of the most important issues facing local governments. Officials will share ideas and discuss viable solutions to numerous challenges, small and large. Year after year, the short and long term benefits from talking face-to-face with colleagues are immeasurable. Read More

Christmas Tree Recycling Sites:
As previously announced, Allegany County Government has sites located throughout the county to drop off live Christmas trees and other natural seasonal greenery such as wreaths and swags. All decorations have to be removed – no lights, no tinsel, no ribbon, etc. Flocked trees are NOT accepted. Christmas trees may be dropped off now continuing through and including Saturday, January 17, 2015. The Christmas tree seasonal drop-off sites are:
Cumberland: Allegany County Compost Site, North Branch Industrial Park, 11700 PPG Road (off of Maryland Route 51, across from the former PPG Plant): Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Cumberland: Penn-Mar Recycling Center, Riverside Industrial Park, 975 Kelly Road (behind Allegany County Office Complex): dawn to dusk 7 days a week
Flintstone: Flintstone Solid Waste Collection Area, I 68 Exit 62 MD Route 144, 26702 National Pike: Thursday, 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., Sunday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Frostburg: baseball field parking lot, Lower Consul Road: dawn to dusk 7 days a week
LaVale: Lions Field, 1111 Braddock Road: dawn to dusk 7 days a week
Little Orleans: Orleans Solid Waste Collection Area, 11306 Orleans Road South: Friday, 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Lonaconing: Town of Lonaconing Public Works Department (rear parking area): Jackson Street, Monday – Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Mount Savage: Mount Savage Recreational Park, Iron Rail Street and Foundry Row (next to recycling bin), dawn to dusk 7 days a week
Oldtown: Oldtown Solid Waste Collection Area, 18622 Lower Town Creek Road: Wednesday, 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., Saturday, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Westernport: City of Westernport Town Garage, Chestnut Street, Monday – Friday, 7:00 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

NOTE: After January 17, 2015 all Christmas trees, etc. are to be taken to Allegany County Government’s Compost Site, cited above. Allegany County Government appreciates the effort of all recyclers and encourages individuals, business, and other entities to reduce, reuse, recycle, and compost.

The Planning and Zoning Commission of Allegany County has scheduled a public hearing regarding parking. Read More. Part 4 Zoning

Public Hearings Background Information forSavage Pumping Station Generator, Frostburg Water Treatment Plant Generator, Housing Buyout in Flood Plains, Bowling Green Water Project, Moss Avenue Water Project, Rawlings Water Project, Mount Savage Water and Sewer Project. Read More

Continuum of Care Program: This is designed to promote communitywide commitment to the goal of ending homelessness. The Priority Listing for Allegany County COC FY 2014 Projects is attached. Read more.

A Bill Entitled: “Solar Energy Systems Regulations”

Cumberland Raceway, Inc. Oval Track Racing Agreement: Read More

Local Officials Planning for Ebola

CUMBERLAND, MD –   There has been a lot of confusing and alarming information about the Ebola outbreak in the news. As you have seen, Ebola can be a severe viral illness that begins much like the flu. It is passed from person-to-person through contact with body fluids directly from a person who is having symptoms or from contaminated surfaces. Although Ebola has been around for many years, the current West African outbreak is the largest in history, and much of the confusing information heard in the news arises from cutting-edge research and findings regarding this disease. As health officials study the victims of Ebola, new and refined information emerges regarding how Ebola is spread and, therefore, prevented.  The Allegany County Health Department, in collaboration with the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and many local community partners, is aggressively planning should a case of Ebola occur in Allegany County or a neighboring county. Read More

Matthew W. Diaz Awarded Recertification in Economic Development Designation

Matthew W. Diaz has been awarded re-certification by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) effective July 1, 2014. Diaz first achieved the Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) designation in 2008. With over 12 years of economic development experience, Diaz has led Allegany County Government’s Department of Economic and Community Development since 2006. Read More

First Allegany County Opportunity Scholarships Awarded to ACM, FSU Students
With the beginning of the fall semester, local students at Allegany College of Maryland (ACM) or Frostburg State University (FSU) are now receiving the first Allegany County Opportunity Scholarships. The Allegany County Commissioners, Michael W. McKay, Creade V. Brodie, Jr., and William R. Valentine, established the Allegany County Opportunity Scholarship, benefitting Allegany County residents attending either ACM or  FSU. The county’s investment in higher and continuing education is already greatly enhancing economic opportunities for its citizens and thus supporting families and the community at large, according to representatives from the ACM and FSU foundations. Classes for ACM begin Monday, Aug. 25, and FSU classes start Tuesday, Sept. 2. Most of the scholarships at both institutions have been awarded, but some are still to be disbursed.
Read More


Capital Immprovement Program
FY 2015-2019

Presented 5.8.2014

Allegany County
Economic Development Plan 2012


FY 2015 Capital Improvement Program:  Debt Affordability Component
Presented 5.8.2014



Allegany County Commissioners Public Meeting
January 15, 2015


Allegany County Commissioners Public Meeting
December 18, 2014

Featured Links


BILL NO. 1-15 A Bill Entitled: “Amendment to Off-Street Parking Standards” 



Draft 2014 Solid Waste
Management Plan


Public Hearings Background Information for Community Development and Housing Needs
Moss Avenue Water Project
Bowling Green Water Project
Rawlings Water Project
Mount Savage Water and Sewer Project

The Homeowner's Tax Credit Program
Learn More / Download Application

Rawlings & Rt. 220 Water & Sewer Projects Fact Sheet