The presidents of Maryland's community colleges have decided they no longer want a professional legislative lobbyist -- and that means that Carolyn T. Burridge, who was retained in November for six months at a cost of $24,000, will not be rehired.

Burridge figured in a controversy last month over her friendship with William A. Fogle Jr., state secretary of licensing and regulation, who hired her to run a media-relations seminar for top state officials. The seminar was later canceled by Lt. Gov. Melvin Steinberg, who said it might give the appearance of a conflict of interest.

The community colleges hired Burridge after Fogle recommended her to a neighbor, Philip R. Day, president of Dundalk Community College.

After Friday's meeting, Robert E. Parilla, chairman of an association of Maryland's community college presidents, said the group decided it would forgo a lobbyist but that the decision was not influenced by the Fogle controversy.

"We have felt the message {that} the colleges need more state help has been delivered," said Parilla, president of Montgomery College. "That is basically it."t at us," said Brian Murray, a deck hand on the ferry. "We tried to reverse...but we couldn't do anything. It takes at least 10 seconds to do anything with this boat."

The pilot of the small boat, identified as William McCutchon Jr. of Virginia Beach, apparently tried to veer away from the ferry, Murray said, but was only able to turn the small craft slightly before the collision.

The ferry did not appear to have sustained any serious damage and returned to Portsmouth with Coast Guard officers aboard questioning the captain. It did not make its final trip of the night to Norfolk.

The Coast Guard is investigating the accident.

AP-BA-06-27 0720EDT