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The original item was published from 9/19/2023 3:16:14 PM to 10/4/2023 12:00:02 AM.

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Posted on: September 19, 2023

[ARCHIVED] County Reaches Settlement Agreement on Land Use Issue

Map of farmland

FREDERICK, Md. – Frederick County Executive Jessica Fitzwater today announced the resolution of a decade-long land use disagreement. She signed a settlement agreement Tuesday with the Town of New Market and Avanti Properties, the Washington, D.C. based developer of several parcels of land within the town limits, known as Calumet. 

On Dec. 23, 2022, Avanti filed a lawsuit against the County and the Town, alleging the prior administration failed to transmit water and sewer amendments to the County Council for its consideration, and asking the court to order the County to move the process forward. The agreement signed today settles that lawsuit, commits Avanti to pay at least $8.6 million in school mitigation fees, ensures the availability of funds to cover the County’s ongoing maintenance costs of the future New Market Bypass, and commits the County to schedule the required public hearing on changes to a water and sewer plan.

“I am keenly aware of the challenges our school system faces as the result of rapid growth,” County Executive Fitzwater said. “This agreement finds opportunity out of a challenge. I’m pleased to be able to settle this issue in a way that brings benefits to county residents.”

County Executive Fitzwater also announced that Frederick County has acquired the Burall Farm, a 119-acre site at the intersection of Routes 75 and 80, for a new school. The school will ease overcrowding in the eastern and southern parts of the county. When built, the facility will be the 11th high school in Frederick County Public Schools. 

“The Burall Farm will help us meet a growing need in our community with additional school capacity,” County Executive Fitzwater said. “Enrollment in Frederick County Public Schools is growing faster than all other systems in the state. Buying this property gives us an ideal location to serve students in New Market’s and Urbana’s growth areas.”  

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