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.