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P R O T E C T I N G  T H E  L I T T L E  P I P E  C R E E K  W A T E R S H E D  S I N C E  1 9 8 7


P. O. B O X 1 8 9, N E W W I N D S O R , M A R Y L A N D 21776
w w w. NE W C A P o n l i n e. o r g




September 28, 2013


The Carroll County Planning & Zoning Commission

County Office Building

225 North Center Street

Westminster, MD 21157


Re:Proposed Zoning Text Amendments §223-2, 143 & 144 – Mining Provisions



Ladies and Gentlemen of the Commission:


The New Windsor Community Action Project (NEWCAP) strongly opposes the above referenced zoning text amendments for reasons that will follow. However, NEWCAP would first like to express its gratitude in being able to work with the Lehigh Cement Company and the Department of Land Use, Planning, and Development in reviewing the proposed amendments. It has been very productive and has greatly helped us in reaching the following position.


NEWCAP understands why the Lehigh Cement Company has proposed certain text amendments to the above referenced sections of the Carroll County Zoning Code. It is true that there was a need for clarification of text in certain areas. However, as part of the effort to make those clarifications, there have been proposed alterations to §223-2, 143 & 144 that will adversely impact the peace and wellbeing for those communities and individuals in the vicinity of lands owned by mining companies that are actively being quarried. They are as follows:


1) §223-2 Definitions



D. Storage of excavated material shall not be considered an extractive operation


The insertion of Definition D will gut the original intention for hours of operation that are carefully spelled out in

§ 223-144.J in General regulations for the Mineral Resource Recovery Area as seen below:


Hours of operation.

(1) Extractive operations shall be restricted to the hours of 6:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Saturday.

(2) Processing operations, and nonextractive related activities (i.e., administrative, maintenance, repair), may be carried out on the premises beyond the allowed hours of operation, provided that the sound level does not exceed the maximum acceptable limit allowed by the State of Maryland or Chapter 146, Noise. [Amended 04/07/09 by Ord. No. 09-02]

(3) On Sundays and during atypical business hours extractive operations will be allowed if expressly permitted by the Zoning Administrator because of an operating emergency or because of local or state need. 


With the above insertion the removal of overburden, the construction of berms and of concurrent reclamation piles will be permitted seven (7) days a week and twenty-four (24) hours a day. The only thing that will be covered by the current strict hours of operation will be the actual extraction of the desired stone. In the case of Lehigh, that stone is limestone. The removal and placement of any overburden from the quarry in order to reach that limestone will not be considered part of the extractive process.

The argument has been expressed that in case of an operating emergency there is the need for flexibility in the hours of operation. However, that is a false claim. Flexibility is already built into the current language as seen in section (3) above. However, unlike having the right to operate 24/7 and 365 days a year, the company must obtain permission from the Zoning Administrator in order to temporarily operate outside the normal hours of operation and only in the case of a recognized emergency.


2) §223-144. General Regulations for the Mineral Resource Recovery Area.


A. Mineral resource recovery operations, except for storage and removal of excavated material, shall be no closer than 200 feet to all adjoining property lines or any existing or proposed public road right-of-way and 400 feet from any existing principal building on an adjacent property.


The simple insertion of “except for storage and removal of excavated material” will allow the construction of a concurrent reclamation pile, or anything claiming to be the “storage and removal of excavated material” as close as seventy (70) feet from a property line or public road right-of-ways. This minimum distance requirement is found in Part Two – Landscaping Requirements, Section III,G of the Carroll County Landscaping Manual. There it states the following: “A minimum 70-footed planted buffer shall be required along all mineral resource operation property lines.” It should be noted that according to the landscaping manual berms are not mandatory and, therefore, are not guaranteed to surround a quarry.

An additional observation of the above noted amendment needs to be made: If a principal building, such as a person’s home, is 10 feet from a property line, a concurrent reclamation pile will be able to be constructed 80 feet from a bedroom window instead of 400 feet, as is currently permitted, if this amendment is adopted.

In conclusion, NEWCAP is opposed to the above referenced zoning text amendments as proposed for sections

§223-2.D and §223-144.A. The repercussions of these text amendments can be understood in the following example: With the amendments as requested, a concurrent reclamation pile could be constructed 80 feet from a person’s bedroom window every hour of the day, every hour of the night and every day of the year.




William Franz, II

President, NEWCAP


Brian A. Mobley

Chairman of the Board, NEWCAP