Cumberland Times-News

Local News

December 30, 2012

Officials not expecting reimbursement for hosting G-8 summit

THURMONT (AP) — More than six months after President Barack Obama and seven other world leaders converged on Camp David for the G-8 summit, local officials appear to hold out little hope that taxpayers might ever recoup the cost of preparing for and hosting the event.

“Are we expecting it? Not necessarily now,” Thurmont Mayor Martin Burns said. “If we were, we should have been paid by now, but we’re about to go over a fiscal cliff here.”

Obama’s announcement in March that the event would move from Chicago to Camp David near Thurmont sent local officials scrambling to plan for the unknown. Previous summits in other cities have attracted massive protests.

The relative seclusion of Camp David meant that officials couldn’t pinpoint where protesters might set up shop, or if they would. Local law enforcement agencies said they were monitoring the Internet for clues in the weeks and months running up to the event.

The two-day event in May came and went with few problems, though several hundred protesters turned out peacefully in Thurmont. The White House during the summit said it would look into reimbursement after Rep. Roscoe Bartlett sent a letter requesting assistance. Sheriff Chuck Jenkins at that time said it was unfair that Chicago would receive up to $40 million to host the NATO summit.

The White House referred additional requests for information to the U.S. Secret Service.

The Secret Service does not have a funding mechanism to reimburse local officials for their expenditures, spokes-man Max Milien said.

Several officials, including Burns, Frederick Police Department Lt. Dennis Dudley and Mayor Randy McClement said the Secret Service told them in March not to expect federal assistance.

The G-8 cost the city of Frederick $60,189.39, McClement said. A financial breakdown provided by the city — used to track expenses in the event of reimbursement — showed that $44,296.84 of that total was for police.

“The feds did not declare the event a National Special Security Event,” McClement said in an email Thursday. “Without that declaration, there is no possibility of reimbursement.”

Maryland Emergency Management Agency spokesman Ed McDonough also said in an email Thursday that the office was advised by the Secret Service not to expect reimbursement because “all of the state and local operations were being done at their own discretion and not at the direction of the Secret Service.”

Bartlett said neither his letter to the White House nor a subsequent email or phone call received a response.

“Since we had security expenses, we felt that we ought to be included,” Bartlett said. “Of course, the president’s from Chicago.”

Burns said that Thurmont had initially expected that the town would spend about $20,000 around the G-8.

It wound up spending about $6,000, he said. He said he’s been working with Sen. Barbara Mikulski’s office to try to recoup funds.

Mikulski spokeswoman Rachel MacKnight said Thursday that the senator’s state director is working with the county’s emergency management staff to identify a “workable option” for the county, including grants.

Jack Markey, the county’s emergency management director, could not be reached for further comment.

Burns said that if any local entities should receive reimbursement, Thurmont should, because it was the nexus of activity.

The town could not “just ignore” the G-8, he said — it had to prepare for the worst in the event that something happened.

“If the federal government thinks that it’s OK just throwing bills out in this economic climate, it’s not OK,” Burns said.

Jenkins said the sheriff’s office had spent a little more than $70,000 on the summit, including equipment purchases, but said the financial burden to the office was not one of a hardship because it has a surplus.

“To me, it’s the cost of doing business,” Jenkins said.

Jenkins said he had long since moved on from the G-8 and has no expectation that Mikulski’s office will be able to help in the end.

“I don’t expect any money,” Jenkins said. “There’s no money anywhere. I just don’t think they’re going to be able to find it.”

1
Text Only
Local News
  • W.Va. legislative candidates gearing up for election

    ROMNEY, W.Va. — Five area candidates will be vying for legislative seats in this year’s election.

    April 20, 2014

  •  Easter grass Easter grass

    Kamryn Rice, 7, of Flintstone, finds and bags a plastic egg during Cumberland’s annual Easter Egg Hunt Saturday afternoon at Constitution Park. Hosted by the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, along with students from Frostburg State University’s Recreation and Parks Management program and the 4-H Youth of Allegany County, the afternoon also included games, relay races, face painting, temporary tattoos, arts and crafts, and a petting zoo sponsored by the 4-H Hare Raiser Club, as well as a visit from the Easter Bunny. The eggs contained candy and other treats.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Business community wary of minimum wage increases

    CUMBERLAND — Allegany County businesses are certain to be impacted by the increase in Maryland’s minimum wage, set to reach $10.10 an hour by July 2018 under a law championed by Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley.

    April 20, 2014

  • Tipped workers left behind in pay hike action

    ANNAPOLIS — Many minimum wage workers will be getting a raise now that a hike to Maryland’s wage has been signed into law. But while advocates are ascribing the increase as a win, there’s a bitter aftertaste for one group that was left behind.

    April 20, 2014

  • Views vary among Americans when it comes to hourly rate

    CUMBERLAND — Even among those who have worked minimum wage jobs, views on the minimum wage can differ.
    “Minimum wage has to exist. There is no question there, so whatever it is, it will be called ‘minimum wage’. But it should not be below a living wage,” said Bonita Quick of Cumberland.

    April 20, 2014

  • Income guideline change will increase WIC recipients

    KEYSER, W.Va. — Raised income eligibility guidelines for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children will increase the number of those served in West Virginia by about 10 percent, according to the state health officer.

    April 20, 2014

  • Absentee ballots moving online causes security concerns

    ANNAPOLIS — Voters may get to skip the lines at the polls this summer by receiving and marking their ballots online, but election officials must first decide if the convenience outweighs the security risks.

    April 20, 2014

  • Allegany County emergency medical services honorees and supporters Allegany, Garrett emergency responders honored

    MCHENRY — The 75 people from Allegany and Garrett counties who were involved with two exceptional emergency medical services calls in 2013 were presented with awards at the recent Night for Stars program held at the Wisp Resort.

    April 20, 2014 2 Photos

  • Lexis Trickett meets with Gov. Martin O’Malley Ninth-grader among 30 at inaugural event

    OAKLAND — Lexis Trickett, a ninth-grade student at Southern Garrett High School, was among 30 girls who attended Gov. Martin O’Malley’s Leadership Forum for Women and Girls recently in Annapolis in celebration of Women’s History Month.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • School immunization requirements change

    CUMBERLAND — Changes to school immunization requirements by the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene affect students entering kindergarten and seventh grade for the next school year.

    April 20, 2014

Facebook
Must Read
News related video
Hundreds Gather for Denver Pot Rally on Easter Ocean Drones Making Waves in Research World Breakfast Foods Are Getting Pricier Raw: Crowds Rally at '420' Celebration in Denver Marathoners Celebrate Easter With Tradition Raw: Obamas Attend Easter Service Raw: Easter Morning Delivery for Space Station Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case