A January 7 SoMdNews.com article reported the Charles County Commissioners voted 3-2 to create a six member workgroup that will make recommendations on the County’s proposed comprehensive plan update and create a septic tier map for the County. As previously reported by Conduit Street, the County’s plan update has been controversial, provoking strong reactions from both proponents and opponents, including State officials. From the SoMdNews.com article:
As proposed by commissioners’ Vice President Reuben B. Collins II (D), the workgroup’s members will comprise “an equal number of proponents and opponents of the proposed Comprehensive Plan” — Charles County Planning Commission Chairman Steven M. Bunker, Vice Chairman Joseph Richard, Maryland Department of Planning Secretary Richard E. Hall, developer Douglas W. Meeker, farmer David Lines and former Calvert County planning director Greg Bowen. It will complete its work and submit recommendations by Feb. 28 to the commissioners, who will then vote up or down without making changes to the work group’s proposals. …
“I am convinced that the comprehensive plan that has been submitted is legally sufficient,” Collins said, adding that he proposed the workgroup to allow for further public feedback on the plan.
The article noted that the Commissioners who voted against the workgroup felt that primary responsibility for the plan update should rest with the Commissioners and were concerned about marginalizing citizen and county planning staff input.