Letter: Mayor Believes Jarboe Instrumental in Success of Leonardtown’s Downtown - Southern Maryland Headline News

Letter: Mayor Believes Jarboe Instrumental in Success of Leonardtown’s Downtown


On October 24, I attended the grand opening of the Combs & Drury Building in Leonardtown. The building owners, Rick Raley & Joe Drury, along with the co-owner and builder, Mike Mummaugh, followed the Town comprehensive plans and design guidelines to the letter. The three story offices were designed to blend into the old downtown, giving the appearance of much older structures. The awnings, railings, and lanterns blended into the surrounding structures, adding even more charm.

The interior of the building is equally well designed, with each floor providing views of the old Town. I was on the third floor with Commissioner Larry Jarboe as the lights came on in the Square. We both remarked how nice the Town looks with new businesses opening, and a number of renovation projects underway.

I reminded Commissioner Jarboe that only ten years ago, much of the downtown was boarded up, and existing businesses were looking for sites outside the downtown area. The successful campaign to keep the Courthouse downtown was the impetus for the renewed redevelopment and influx of new businesses.

Larry Jarboe, as County Commissioner, attended one of the first Town meetings that I presided over as Mayor in 1995. He convinced the Town Council that he could reverse the County’s commitment to move the Courts from their historic location if he had the Town support. I worked with a number of others to gain that support throughout the community, and Larry kept his promise.

I am convinced that without Commissioner Jarboe, the Courthouse would have moved. I’m equally convinced that the downtown would have never flourished as it has. In fact I don’t believe that I would have been in the new Combs & Drury Building overlooking a vibrant Town. The citizens of Leonardtown, and Saint Mary’s County, owe Commissioner Larry Jarboe a huge debt of gratitude.

J. Harry Norris
Mayor, Leonardtown

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