As many as 200 residents came and went from the Maryland Transit Authority public information meeting on Purpose and Need for Bay Crossing held May 10th from 6-8 PM at the Chestertown Middle School. The format of the meeting did not include a formal presentation or an open mike for public statements. Instead a display of screen shots from the MDTA website were placed around the room with MDTA staff paced around the room to answer questions. There was no available seating except for several tables set up for attendees to sit and fill out comment sheets supplied by the MDTA. The lack of seating made it difficult for some attendees to stay very long or hear the various responses to questions around the room.
Kent Alliance made a presentation to to offer additional information and to counter some of the statements made in the visuals supplied by the MDTA. Most everyone in the room gathered to listen but unfortunately it was not heard by all that attended because the format of the meeting did not lend itself to everyone staying for the entire evening.
There was some frustration expressed by attendees after asking questions. Because the MDTA staff were from specific departments of the study group many of the responses were a variation of ” that is not my area so I do not have an answer”. It seemed that the second most common answer was “we have not studied that issue yet”.
There were some lively discussions with MDTA staff members where alternatives were openly discussed and the logic of MDTA early decisions were debated politely but earnestly. Unfortunately the format of the meeting prevented all from hearing these important discussions.
By the end of the meeting MDTA staff members were commenting that they certainly knew where Kent County stood on all of the aspects of the Bay Crossing Study. That makes the meeting a success. But we need to keep sounding the message. Please keep sending the emails and letters to the MDTA, the governor, and our state legislators.