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Del. Cadden Naysays Burton on a Pasadena Boat Ramp
Dear Bay Weekly:
The last 12 years I have taken the lead on the State Department of Natural Resources Waterway Improvement Fund, to assure that Anne Arundel County receives the monies we need to move forward with the many dredging projects that are in the process for state funding. I worked closely with Ron Bowen, director of Waterway Improvements for Anne Arundel County at the time, his consultants and DNR when they were establishing this process, a model for the entire state.
When I inquired about the funding in the 2007 budget, I was told by DNR that moving the money would not stop the proposed public boat ramp project to be located in the 31st District in Pasadena. The requested $99,000 was seed money. My rationale for moving the money was to get the issue out into the open, so the thousands of residents and businesses located on the Smallwood Road Peninsula would be aware of the issue and have an opportunity to have meaningful input, before the project was too far along in the process to make a difference.
This had nothing to do with my feelings being hurt. If Bill Burton or the editor had called me, I would have clarified my position.
The funds were not cut from the budget. I wanted the county to receive the entire amount allocated to its waterway program. I moved the money into the annual fire boat maintenance grant for the many volunteer and professional fire companies in the county who have boats that respond to waterway emergencies, such as accidents and drownings. Most companies in the Pasadena area have these vessels.
The 31st Delegation has worked with the county under three administrations to find solutions to traffic issues for this area. Last year, in a letter to the county executive, Sen. Philip Jimeno and I requested the county establish a community citizens advisory group to deal with Ft. Smallwood Park and the Weinberg property, just as it did with the golf course. To date, we have received no response to this request.
I do not oppose a public boat ramp. I do strongly believe citizens, whose quality of life is directly affected by such a project, should have the right of public input.
Delegate Joan Cadden, District 31
Editor’s note: Del. Cadden’s point of reference is Bill Burton’s April 6 column, “Fishing Returns to Fort Smallwood Park; In Northern Anne Arundel, a New Park But No New Boat Ramp” [Vol. 14, No. 14].