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2000-07-12
Kent Island, MD. No Sewer for Wal-Mart

The Queen Anne's County (Maryland) Commissioners voted on May 23rd not to grant a water and sewer connection for a proposed 154,000 s.f. Wal-Mart supercenter on Kent Island that has been flooded with complaints by a citizens group Up Against the Wal (see May 16,2000 newsflash below for more details). When the Commissioners denied the utility connection, they were reversing an earlier decision made in November which gave a preliminary green light to the "Kent Commons" project, which includes not only a Wal-Mart supsercenter, but a 123 room hotel, a conference center, and a sports bar.After the May decision to cut off water and sewer, the developer took the County to Circuit Court, but last week, Judge John Sause rejected the developer's petition to force the Commissioners to give Wal-Mart a sewer connection. The Judge has set a hearing in September to review the case, but Commissioners believe they have won at least round one. "He could have court-ordered us to grant sewer and water allocation," Commmissioner George O'Donnell told The Capital newspaper. "But the county's previous decisions have not been overruled. We'll take that as a win." The 3 member County Commissioners also serve as the Sanitary Commission. Their ruling in May said that the size of the project and the traffic it would generate would endanger public safety.

What you can do: For now, the developer has failed to get a sewer connection. But the developer and Wal-Mart have failed to make a larger connection: the fact that grassroots opposition to their plan is large, and growing larger. If Wal-Mart was able to make the obvious connection between the sites on which they choose to build, and public opposition, they would withdraw without a fuss, as their founder Sam Walton urged them to do. But the project continues to stir up a fuss in Queen Anne's County, and residents have vowed to fight until the connection between them and Wal-Mart is completely broken.










 
 
"Norman has become the guru of the anti-Wal-Mart movement" ~ 60 Minutes

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