Mayor proposes better notice on gas work, new learning projects for Hancock students

by Geoff Fox

Hancock Mayor Ralph Salvagno brought up an issue he had with the gas company working on a line between Park N Dine and Shives Pizza recently.

The issue came up after a gas explosion on August 10 in Baltimore where three homes were leveled and severely damaged a fourth. Two people were killed in the explosion and seven others injured.

The mayor sent a letter to Columbia Gas Company of Maryland asking questions such as the status of the natural gas infrastructure; who is legally responsible for installation, upgrade, and maintenance; and what responsibility has Columbia Gas to notify the town of any actions.

Salvagno said legislators are also aware of the letter.

With the town’s infrastructure already in bad shape, the possibility the gas company’s infrastructure is aging was of concern.

Salvagno said when people see the gas company digging along Main Street, they have to wonder why the digging is taking place.

Lanehart told him the line from Shives to Park N Dine was bad.

“See. Why don’t we know that?” the mayor asked.

Salvagno said an ordinance could be forthcoming where if any work has to be done and a line replaced, it would have to be buried underground.

Boyer, who works for Potomac Edison, said burying the lines would never happen as there would be costs associated with digging.

He said other towns have asked about burying lines, but it would be “obscenely ridiculous” amounts of money to do so.

A Hancock curriculum

Salvagno also brought up possibly making a Hancock curriculum for school students who are going to be distance learning and home schooling in the coming school year.

The kids not physically going back to school and being stuck in the house is “not an ideal situation,” he said.

With the help of Gillespie and Katie Nash, the town’s advocate in Annapolis, Salvagno came up with a possible curriculum for those students.

The mock up he had was focused on history, which goes along with the current home school curriculum.

There are very specific things people could do as learning projects in Hancock.

For example, in Hancock, it could be teaching kindergartners where Hancock is on a map, or the C&O Canal and Potomac River in geography.

It wouldn’t be just Hancock students that would have this curriculum as other students in the county could use it as well.

Salvagno said with kids working on schoolwork until 1 p.m., it could be a working activity after that is done.

Boyer countered that high school students would be in zoom classes until 2:30 p.m.