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Emmitsburg Area News Briefs

(4/29) During the April 4th Emmitsburg Town meeting, several items were discussed by the Board of Commissioners. On the agenda were items including an easement related to Flat Run Bridge replacement, a demonstration of the utilization of town Geographic Information System and its capabilities, and the consideration of a tobacco use policy 16-02.

The Flat Run Bridge replacement is intended to begin late this summer. After State engineers analyzed the bridge project, they realized that the required grading of land along the state right of way leading up to the bridge would also require sloping approximately 250 square feet of town property. To reduce contracting and legal complications from having to work on land owned by two entities the state asked the town sell the land in question for $250 to the state After completion of the bridge replacement project the state would cede the land back to the town. The motion to sell the land was passed 5-0 by the town council.

In other issues, Christian Bruchman, a staff scientist from Advanced Land and Water was present at the meeting and briefed the Board about the establishment of Geographic Information System (GIS). Bruchman has been working with and training town staff members on establishing and integrating GIS for Emmitsburg. Bruchman recently installed all the necessary software, advised staff on the equipment, and had begun the training process to familiarize staff on the technology.

Bruchman mentioned many important uses for GIS within Emmitsburg and how this technology will benefit the community. The utilization of GIS technology will allow staff members with extensive knowledge of pipelines, location of water sources, underground systems etc. to move that knowledge over to a digital recording system. GIS technology will be very useful for planning and zoning purposes as it allows the ease of making graphics and maps for locations of potential buildings, parking lots etc.. Within the town of Emmitsburg, GIS technology can not only pull up the location of pipes, but it can also pull up information on the last maintenance of pipes, water flow through the pipes etc. GIS provides a digital record keeping system for a variety of data, and provides an outlet for the public to view the data.

Bruchman noted that GIS is a multi-step system of technology and is always growing, so it will therefore be a project that takes years to fully develop. Staff members will continue training with the consultants from Advanced Land and Water.

The Commissioners also voted unanimously to prohibit the use of tobacco and tobacco products in town government buildings and town vehicles.

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