Public comment on a draft Monocacy River management plan has reopened through the end of January 2017.

The Monocacy Scenic River Citizens’ Advisory Board sent letters to over 300 property owners who would be affected by the draft plan with information where it could be viewed online and at Taneytown, Emmitsburg, Thurmont, Walkersville and Frederick public libraries.

Several landowners were unintentionally not notified and did not see the plan until after the initial public comment period, from Oct. 12 to Nov. 9, closed.

The board listened to approximately two hours of public testimony at its last regularly scheduled meeting Dec. 7. Approximately 50 landowners attended the meeting and fewer than five were officially notified, according to an informal poll taken during the meeting.

The main concern stems from a proposed Monocacy River Resource Protection Area that extends 300 to 500 feet from the river. More than 77 percent is within the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s 100-year floodplain, which is tightly regulated. A 100-year flood refers to a flood with a 1 percent chance of happening in any particular year.

The plan outlines best management practices and river stewardship programs that Frederick and Carroll counties could implement.

There is no timeline for when the draft plan will be sent to the counties’ councils for a vote, said Frederick County Principle Planner Tim Goodfellow, who is the board’s liaison to Frederick County.

The board has received 40 letters, Goodfellow said. The board will also consider public comments from two public information sessions in Frederick and Carroll counties.

The board may revise portions of the plan based off the public’s input before presenting it to the councils. Each council will need to adopt the plan and write legislation later to act on the recommendations.

Follow Samantha Hogan on Twitter: @SAHogan.

Samantha Hogan is the state house, environment, agriculture and energy reporter for The Frederick News-Post.

(7) comments

MAVRICKinc7

Why can't we get past the anguish that property owners are advocating and maintaining and turn the conversation to what it will cost US in clean water, and water resources that continue to be polluted. Think of our current circumstance, and WONDER what the last drop of clean water will go for on the open market, decades from now. Why is Frederick and Frederick County PRETENDING that polluted water will never become part of the Monocacy river habitat and all the life forms that use its waters to survive?
Why is the Oil and Gas industry so intent on FRACKING the Maryland landscape, anymore so than other States having to contend with the contamination of their water resources and through a PROCESS of fracking with carcinogens and chemical compounds the industry has failed to identify for public consumption and comprehension?

ma23464

Tributaries will be next. First they must seize the property rights of those along he river.

Boyce Rensberger

They are no more seizing property rights than speed limits seize driving rights.

ma23464

So you would gladly surrender your right to do what you please on your property?

Boyce Rensberger

There is no right to do anything on one's property that harms someone else.

Boyce Rensberger

The water that runs across my land does not belong to me. This was established by centuries of water rights law.

Boyce Rensberger

Does this plan not deal with tributaries to the Monocacy? One such stream, Cookerly's Creek, passes through my property less than a mile from the Monocacy, and yet I received no notice. Effective river conservation measures should extend to tributaries.

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