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Maryland State Police Prince Frederick Blotter

(Prince Frederick, MD) – The below incidents, investigations, and arrests are, in part, demonstrative of the Prince Frederick Barrack’s effort to ensure that Calvert County is a safe place to live, work, and visit.
 
2nd Degree Assault (Domestic) - On November 13, 2020, TFC Palumbo responded to 12000 Susan Lane, Lusby, Maryland, for a reported domestic assault. The alleged assault occurred between Jason Aaron Gravely, DOB: 3/22/1982 and Kimberly Michelle Gravely, DOB: 8/21/1985. During the investigation, it was discovered that J. Gravely had been physically assaulted by K. Gravely. As a result, K. Gravely was arrested for 2nd degree assault and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center without incident.
 
CDS: Possession - Cocaine – On November 14, 2020, TFC Marsch conducted a traffic stop at Chaneyville Road and Route 4, Owings, Maryland, due to observed traffic violations. A search was conducted and during the search it was discovered the driver, and sole occupant of the vehicle, Sean Alan Edmunds, DOB: 06/30/1971, was in possession of CDS and CDS Paraphernalia, suspected Cocaine. Edmunds was arrested and transported to CCDC without incident.
 
CDS: Possession - Adderall – On November 15, 2020, TFC Marsch stopped a vehicle at
Chaneyville Road and Route 4, Owings, Maryland, due to observed traffic violations. A probable cause search was conducted and the driver, James Benjamin Marshall, DOB: 02/06/1978, was found to be in possession of suspected Adderall, Marijuana and Marijuana wax. Marshall was transported to CCDC without further incident.
 
Theft / MDOP - On November 17, 2020, S/T Costello responded to 4905 Saint Leonard Road, Saint Leonard, Maryland, for a report of a MDOP to a vehicle and theft of personal items. S/T Costello made contact with the victim, Tristao Commodore, DOB: 07/05/1977, who advised his vehicle had been vandalized, both inside and out by Angel Joy Hammaker, DOB: 01/25/1977.  Commodore advised Hammaker was upset with him and had threatened to “bust out his windows.” S/T Costello’s investigation led to an assessment of over $1800.00 in damages to Commodore’s vehicle as well as approximately $240.00 of stolen property from within the vehicle. Contact was then made with Hammaker at the Cliff’s Motel. Hammaker admitted she committed the vandalism as well as taking the personal items of Commodore. Hammaker is being charged with MDOP: Property Value over $1000, Rogue and Vagabond, and Theft $100 to $1000. This case remains open pending service of the charges.
 
Driving Under the Influence / CDS: Possession - Heroin- On November 19, 2020, TFC
Oleksak attempted to conduct a traffic stop on a MD tag 5AL0036 displayed on a gray Hyundai Elantra. The driver, Winston Calvin McKutchin 12/26/1951 was operating the vehicle in such a way that it was posing a traffic hazard and danger to others. The vehicle maintained a low speed but did not immediately stop. A rolling roadblock was utilized to stop the vehicle after approximately one mile. Impairment was observed. McKutchin refused medical attention from the EMS on scene. SFSTs were not completed on McKutchin for safety reasons. Suspected Heroin was observed on the front passenger seat. A search of the vehicle revealed additional CDS (suspected Heroin). McKutchin was arrested for DUI and CDS and transported to CCDC without further incident.
 
Attempt to Flee / CDS Possession – Phencyclidine / Warrant – On November 20, 2020,
TFC Smith attempted to stop a vehicle on northbound Route 4, just south of Plum Point Rd,
Huntingtown, Maryland, for erratic driving and other traffic violations. The driver, Clifton EugeneOnley, DOB: 09/27/1962, failed to stop initially and then attempted to flee on foot. TFC Smith apprehended Onley after a brief chase. A search of the vehicle incident to a lawful arrest of Onley revealed CDS, suspected Phencyclidine (PCP), as well as related CDS paraphernalia. Onley was also wanted on a warrant for violation of parole conditions. Onley was subsequently transported to CCDC without further incident.

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Calvert County Sheriff's Office Incident Report

During the week of November 16 – November 22 deputies of the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office responded to 1,207 calls for service throughout the community. 
 
Damaged Property: 20-59653
On November 16, 2020, Deputy Gough took a report of damaged property that occurred on San Jose Lane in Lusby. The complainant advised that sometime between November 15th at 11:00am and November 16th at 6:30am, an unknown suspect(s) punctured a hole in the front, driver’s side door of their vehicle. The value of damaged property is $450.
 
Damaged Property: 20-59721
On November 17, 2020, Deputy Payne responded to Goose Creek Farm in Huntingtown for the report of damaged property. The complainant advised that sometime between November 14th at 6:00pm and November 15th at 8:00am an unknown suspect(s) spray painted derogatory words and profanity on a plastic political sign located on the property. The value of damaged property is $100.
 
Damaged Property: 20-60219
On November 20, 2020, Sergeant Phelps responded to D Street in Chesapeake Beach for the report of damaged property. The complainant advised that sometime between November 19th at 9:30pm and November 20th at 7:00am, an unknown suspect(s) slashed the rear driver side tire of their vehicle. The value of damaged property is $200.
 
Damaged Property: 20-60544
On November 21, 2020, Deputy Dymond responded to Jonathan Drive in Dunkirk for the report of damaged property. The complainant advised their Apple Ipad was thrown into the roadway causing it to crack and no longer work. The value of damaged property is $650.
 
Damaged Property: 20-60605
On November 22, 2020, Deputy Flynt responded to Stoakley Road in Prince Frederick for the report of damaged property. The complainant advised that sometime between 12:00am and 5:00am, an unknown suspect(s) was doing donuts in their wheat field. The value of damaged property is $1,000.
 
Theft: 20-59799
On November 17, 2020, Deputy Flynt responded to Dares Beach Road in Prince Frederick for the report of a theft. The complainant advised that an unknown suspect(s) had stolen the front and rear registration plates from their truck. The value of stolen property is $175.
 
Theft: 20-59822
On November 17, 2020, Deputy Dymond responded to Shirl Court in Chesapeake Beach for the report of a theft. The complainant advised that sometime between November 12th and November 17th, an unknown suspect(s) stole two boxes of Bruce Hardwood Flooring from their garage. The value of stolen property is $100.
 
Arrests:
 
On November 16, 2020, Deputy Grierson was advised by Calvert County Emergency Communications that a male and female subject were observed leaving Walmart in Prince Frederick with several items they did not pay for. Deputy Grierson and Sergeant Morder located the subject’s vehicle and after a brief pursuit, conducted a traffic stop on Tate Road in Prince Frederick. Deputies made contact with the occupants, Devonte Twain Harrod (21), and Haley Elizabeth Morris (21), and observed several boxes and loose items in the vehicle that were not in bags. Harrod and Morris exited the vehicle and advised all the items were taken from Walmart and were not paid for. A total of 39 items were stolen, with a total value of $714.45. Harrod and Morris were placed under arrest and transported to Calvert County Detention Center where they were each charged with Theft: $100 to under $1,500. 
 
On November 20, 2020, Deputy W. McDowell conducted a traffic stop at 7-11 in Dunkirk. Upon making contact with the occupants of the vehicle, Deputy McDowell detected the strong odor of marijuana emanating from the vehicle. The occupants exited the vehicle and a search as conducted which resulted in a black AWS Digital Scale, a box of sandwich bags, and a zip lock bag containing suspected marijuana. Also located in the vehicle was a large plastic bag and a black grocery bag, both containing suspected marijuana. The driver of the vehicle, Maurice Troy Weir (37), was placed under arrest and was transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with CDS: Possession w/ Intent to Distribute: Narcotics, and CDS: Possession of Marijuana 10 GM+. 
 
On November 20, 2020, Deputy Durnbaugh responded to Calvert Health Medical Center in Prince Frederick for the report of a disorderly subject. Upon arrival, hospital security advised a male subject, Justin Andrew Holt (26), was acting disorderly and refused to cooperate with hospital staff. Deputy Durnbaugh made contact with Holt, who advised he had taken “Molly” and wanted to be seen by a doctor. Hospital staff advised Holt repeatedly refused to wear a mask and refused to give the doctor or staff any information about his illness. Holt was escorted from the hospital property and taken to his home. A short time later, Deputy Durnbaugh responded back to Calvert Health Medical Center where Holt had returned with a family member. Holt again requested treatment but refused a mask and refused to give any information to medical staff and continued acting disorderly. Holt was placed under arrest and transported to Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with Trespass: Private Property and Disorderly Conduct.  
 
On November 21, 2020 Deputy Flynt conducted a traffic stop on North Solomons Island Road at Cox Road in Huntingtown. Deputy Flynt observed the driver, David Michael Strickland (38), nodding off behind the wheel and detected the strong odor of alcohol emanating from the vehicle and Strickland’s person. Strickland exited the vehicle and was observed to be incoherent and could not maintain balance. A search of the vehicle was conducted which resulted in an open 12 ounce Miller Lite beer, a clear container containing an unknown pill capsule, and a pill bottle containing half a pill suspected to be Alprazolam. Strickland was placed under arrest and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with CDS: Possession- Not Marijuana, and multiple traffic citations. 
 
On November 21, 2020, Deputy Payne responded to Walmart in Dunkirk for the report of a disorderly female. Witnesses advised a female subject was outside the store harassing customers and yelling as they were leaving and throwing trash on the ground. Deputy Payne located the female subject, Latoya Renee Mason (38), and observed her approaching customers as they were exiting the store. While speaking with Deputy Payne, Mason became irate and began yelling profanities and inappropriate comments and continued to ignore Deputy Payne’s commands to stop yelling. Calvert County Emergency Communications advised Mason was wanted on an active warrant through Charles County Sheriff’s Office. Mason was placed under arrest and was transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where she continued to act in a disorderly manner towards Correctional Officers. Mason was charged with Disorderly Conduct and Failure to Obey a Reasonable/Lawful Order. 

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Town issues Clarification On Short Term Rentals

The Town of Chesapeake Beach adopted
a Housing Code via Ordinance O-19-11 in May of 2019 that provides an avenue for
residents to apply for a rental permit for a period of more than (30) thirty days in the
Town limits. As residents review their property, to determine investment income
opportunities, residents should review the Housing Code, the Town’s Zoning Ordinance
and the Land Use Classification Table before taking any action.
When reviewing your rental income options, residents should first understand their
property’s current zoning. A zoning map is viewable here:
https://ecode360.com/attachment/CH3001/CH3001-290c%20App%20B%20Maps.pdf. Any use within a specific zone requires a zoning permit to be issued by the Town.
Once you know your properties zoning, you will need to look at the Land Use Classification
Table. It is located here: https://ecode360.com/attachment/CH3001/CH3001-
290a%20Table%201%20Land%20Use%20Class.pdf
If you are considering a Bed and Breakfast establishment, note that the Zoning Ordinance defines “Bed and Breakfast Establishment” as “An owner-occupied or manager-occupied building where, for compensation, and only by prearrangement (transients only) for definite periods, lodging and meals are provided.” Take note that the owner or manager of the bed and breakfast must occupy the house and meals must be provided to the guests.
If you comply with the definition and are considering a Bed and Breakfast establishment, follow the Land Use Classification Table to Item # 32 “Bed-and Breakfast establishment” where it
will lay out the parameters for each zoning district. You will see that Bed and Breakfast
establishments are allowed in most districts as either an SC use (Special Exception, subject to Conditions) or as a C use (conditional use - permitted use subject to conditions).
Those conditions may be found by following this
link: https://ecode360.com/15165221?highlight=&searchId=27952920358010951
§290-11 Conditions and standards for conditional and special exception uses:
P. Bed-and-breakfast: special exception with conditions use in the R-LD District and conditional use in the R-MD, R-V, C, M and RPC Districts, subject to the requirements of the district where located, except as herein provided:
 
(1) An owner or manager lives on the premises.
(2) The facility is part of a dwelling unit.
(3) No separate kitchens are provided.
(4) Meals shall be provided for overnight lodgers only.
(5) The facility is operated through a state-approved bed-and-breakfast registry.
(6) One off-street parking space is provided for each guest room.
In order to obtain a permit to operate a Bed and Breakfast, the owner must submit a permit
application with the Town, which includes an inspection by the County. After they are fully
permitted by Town & County, and establish themselves, then they can work towards obtaining membership on the State registry, which is required prior to operation as a Bed and Breakfast.
If you have questions regarding this process please visit our website at
www.chesapeakebeachmd.gov or call Town Hall at (410)257-2230 to be routed appropriately. 

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Public Works to Host Free Tire Recycling Event for Residents and Farmers

The Calvert County Department of Public Works, Solid Waste Division, will host a free tire recycling event for Calvert County residents and farmers on Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020 from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.
 
Up to 10 tires per residence or farm will be accepted at the Appeal Landfill, located at 401 Sweetwater Road in Lusby, and Barstow Customer Convenience Center, located at 350 Stafford Road in Barstow. Water or dirt-filled tires will not be accepted.
 
Residents must bring their driver’s license or proof of residency. Businesses are prohibited from this event.
 
Residents are required to wear face masks and practice safe social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
 
For more information about recycling events, call the Calvert County Department of Public Works, Solid Waste Division, at 410-326-0210 or visit www.CalvertCountyMd.gov/Recycle.
 
Find information on Calvert County Government services online at www.CalvertCountyMd.gov. Stay up to date with Calvert County Government on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CalvertCountyMd.

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Governor Hogan Announces Launch of All-Hands-on-Deck COVID-19 Compliance and Enforcement Operation

ANNAPOLIS, MD—Ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday and with the new surge of COVID-19 intensifying in Maryland and across the nation, Governor Larry Hogan today announced the launch of a wide-scale compliance, education, and enforcement operation to slow the spread of the virus and keep Maryland safely open for business.
 
“I know that there is growing frustration that we are all still fighting this virus,” said Governor Hogan. “Many people are struggling emotionally and financially, and this is causing a great deal of stress for nearly everyone—but following the public health directives is the only way we will be able to stop this virus, keep Maryland open for business, and keep hospitals from overflowing.”
 
The governor was joined by Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski, Jr., Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt, Maryland State Police Superintendent Col. Jerry Jones, and Marshall Weston, president and CEO of the Restaurant Association of Maryland.
 
“This is a pivotal moment in our fight against this deadly disease. Lives are on the line and we will continue doing whatever is necessary to protect the public,” said County Executive Olszewski. “We’re urging Marylanders to do the right thing this Thanksgiving by limiting contacts, following all state and local health orders, and wearing your mask.”
 
In addition to the state’s traditional efforts ramping up drunk driving patrols and enforcement ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, the governor announced the launch of an all-hands-on-deck compliance, education, and enforcement operation.
 
The Maryland State Police (MSP) is expanding its COVID-19 Compliance and Coordination Center and deploying ‘High Visibility Compliance Units’ across the state.
Additional state troopers will be assigned in every county to work in partnership with local leaders, law enforcement, and other county officials with a focus on educating the public about existing orders and protocols, preventing super-spreading events, and taking enforcement actions when necessary.
 
These ‘High Visibility Compliance Units’ will be detailed to several downtown areas including Bel Air, Bethesda, Fells Point in Baltimore City, Salisbury, Silver Spring, Towson, and to Allegany County. In addition to bars and restaurants, the operation will focus on venues that host gatherings, including nightclubs and banquet halls.
This statewide operation will kick off on Wednesday ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, and continue throughout the holiday season.
 
Effective immediately, MSP will be operating a 24/7 phone line and email address specifically to support local compliance teams in the field with any questions regarding existing orders and enforcement.
 
24/7 COVID-19 Prevention Hotline. MSP is expanding its 24/7 COVID-19 Prevention Hotline, where members of the public can report unsafe facilities and activities or public health order violations. Marylanders who see unlawful behavior are encouraged to report it by emailing Prevent.Covid@maryland.gov or by calling (833) 979-2266.
 
On Wednesday, November 25 at approximately 5 p.m., the Maryland Emergency Management Agency will send a wireless emergency alert to cell phones statewide to remind Marylanders of critical COVID-19 prevention measures and provide information regarding state and local law enforcement actions. This will be only the second use of this technology by the Hogan administration, following the March 31 alert informing residents of new Stay at Home guidance during the spring COVID-19 surge.
 
Governor Hogan announced a new unified statewide public health campaign beginning this week, with a public service announcement on radio, television, and social media to remind Marylanders to continue taking precautions to slow the spread of COVID-19.
 
Governor Hogan reiterated federal and state public health guidance advising against holiday travel, and strongly recommending that families celebrate only with members of their immediate household. Read the holiday guidance here.

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State Fire Marshal Reminds Citizens To Think Fire Safety During Thanksgiving

The kitchen is the heart of every home, and safety must be the first recipe to follow when preparing the family feast. On Thanksgiving Day, many activities are occurring with friends and family in the home. "Holidays are a time of celebration. Please follow these simple guidelines to ensure a fire-safe Thanksgiving Day meal," states Maryland State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci.
 
Make sure your smoke alarms are working properly by testing them. Additionally, ensure your guests are aware of all available exits if a fire would occur and have them meet at a designated location outside.
The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking. Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop to keep an eye on the food.
Establish a 3' foot "Kids & Pets Free Zone" around any area where hot foods or drinks are prepared. Have activities that keep kids out of the kitchen during this busy time. Provide games, puzzles, books, etc., outside of the kitchen to keep them busy. Kids can also be involved with preparations with recipes that can be made outside of the kitchen area. Just in case, ensure you turn handles inward on the stove and countertop to avoid spills.
Keep a lid nearby when you are cooking to smother small grease fires. Smother the fire by sliding the lid over the pan and turn off the burner, and then leave the pan covered until it has cooled.
Keep anything combustible - oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels, etc., away from the stovetop.
Eliminate clutter in the kitchen. A clean work area allows for better efficiency and fewer chances for mishaps.
Keep matches and lighters out of reach of curious children's hands.
Do not leave lit candles unattended or in places where children or pets could knock them over.
Turkey Fryer Safety
 
Many turkey fryer appliances can be easily tipped over, allowing for hot oil spillage. Ensure you place them on a hard, level, and non-combustible outdoor surface. 
Do not place a turkey fryer under an overhang or temporary roof. A flare-up can easily ignite materials above the appliance.
Partially frozen turkeys can cause a spillover and result in a flare-up. Thoroughly thaw the turkey before cooking.
Turn off the burner before placing the turkey in the container. Re-ignite the burner after you are sure it is safe to do so.
Always monitor the temperature of the oil. It can easily reach temperatures to the point of combustion.
Be careful not to overfill the fryer. Follow manufacturer's guidelines for proper filling levels.
The handles and lid will get dangerously hot. Use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts.
Never leave the fryer unattended while cooking. Keep an all-purpose (ABC) fire extinguisher on hand. Do not use water in an attempt to extinguish a grease fire.
Following these simple guidelines for fire and life safety will help to ensure a tragedy free holiday meal. Have a safe and enjoyable Thanksgiving!
 
The Office of the State Fire Marshal is an agency of the Department of State Police dedicated to helping protect citizens from fire and explosion through a comprehensive program of education, inspection, investigation and fire protection engineering.  For more information on fire safety call 1-800-525-3124, log onto our website at: Maryland State Fire Marshal and/or our Facebook Page.

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Calvert County Government Announces Thanksgiving Holiday Schedules

PRINCE FREDERICK, Md. – The Calvert County Board of County Commissioners announces county offices will close at noon Wednesday, Nov. 25 and will remain closed through Friday, Nov. 27, 2020 in observance of Thanksgiving. In addition:
 
·         Meals on Wheels will not be delivered Thursday, Nov. 26 or Friday, Nov. 27. Meals will be delivered on Tuesday, Nov. 24 for Thanksgiving week, which will include a special Thanksgiving meal. Requests for meal delivery can be made through the Office on Aging at 410-535-4606 or OOAmailbox@CalvertCountyMD.gov.
 
·         Public Transportation will be running a modified schedule on Wednesday, Nov. 25; for specific route information, please contact the Transportation Office at 410-535-4268. There will be no county bus service Thursday, Nov. 26 or Friday, Nov. 27. Regular service will resume Saturday, Nov. 28.
 
·         The Appeal Solid Waste Facility, including the landfill and transfer station, and all county customer convenience centers will close at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 25 and will be closed Thursday, Nov. 26. Normal operating hours resume Friday, Nov. 27.
 
·         The Solomons Septage Receiving Facility will close at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 25, and will be closed Thursday, Nov. 26. Normal operating hours resume Friday, Nov. 27.
 
·         The Water & Sewerage billing and customer service office will be closed beginning at noon Wednesday, Nov. 25 through Friday, Nov. 27. On-call crews will be available for water and sewer service emergencies only at 410-535-3491.
 
·         Community centers will be closed beginning at noon Wednesday, Nov. 25 through Friday, Nov. 27.
 
·         Chesapeake Hills Golf Course will be open Thursday, Nov. 26, 7 a.m. until 3 p.m., weather permitting. Carts must be returned by 2:30 p.m. The course is open to all users.
 
·         All recreation parks including Dunkirk, Hallowing Point, Cove Point and Solomons Town Center parks will be open with winter operating hours.
 
·         Flag Ponds Nature Park and Kings Landing Park will be closed Thursday, Nov. 26 and will reopen Friday, Nov. 27 with normal operating hours.
 
·         Battle Creek Cypress Swamp will be closed Thursday, Nov. 26 and will reopen Friday, Nov. 27 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with limited trail use. Visitors are advised to be aware of their surroundings due to a modified trail system as storm repairs are underway. The nature center remains closed to the public.
 
·         Edward T. Hall Aquatic Center will be closed Thursday, Nov. 26 and will resume normal hours Friday, Nov. 27. Swim sessions are available by online reservation only.
 
·         Breezy Point Beach & Campground is closed for the season.
 
·         The Linda L. Kelley Animal Shelter and Animal Control Division will be closed beginning at noon Wednesday, Nov. 25 through Friday, Nov. 27. Animal Control will be on call for emergencies.
 
·         Calvert Library locations will close at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 25 and reopen at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 28. All digital services and materials will continue to be available 24/7 through calvertlibrary.info.
 
·         The Calvert Marine Museum and Museum Store will be closed Thursday, Nov. 26. The museum will reopen Friday, Nov. 27 with normal operating hours. The museum and store will continue to operate at reduced capacity with a timed entry system. Tickets must be purchased in advance. Visit www.CalvertMarineMuseum.org to learn more.
 
All county senior centers remain closed until further notice as a preventative measure to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
 
Find information on Calvert County Government services online at www.CalvertCountyMd.gov. Stay up to date with Calvert County Government on Facebook at www.facebook.com/CalvertCountyMd.

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Testing of Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant Sirens

LEONARDTOWN, MD – There will be a full-cycle test of the alert and notification sirens throughout St. Mary’s, Calvert and Dorchester counties on Monday, Dec. 7, 2020, at noon.
 
This test includes a three-minute activation of all sirens within the 10-mile area around Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant. All citizens are asked to remember the scheduled testing and relay the information to friends, family and neighbors.
 
The testing is conducted to check siren operation and increase public awareness of the alert and notification siren system. If the sirens sound at any other time, residents should tune to one of the local radio stations for information and instructions.
 
Knowing what to do before, during and after an emergency is a critical part of being prepared and may make all the difference, when seconds count.
 
To learn about Disasters & Hazards, Being Prepared and Being Informed visit:
 
https://www.stmarysmd.com/es/beprepared/ 
 
www.co.cal.md.us/emergencymanagement.com
 
https://dorchestercountymd.com/emergency-management-division-2/

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COVID-19 Testing Site & Agency Holiday Closures

LEONARDTOWN, MD (November 23, 2020) – Due to Thanksgiving Day holidays, the St. Mary’s County Health Department (SMCHD) offices and SMCHD COVID-19 testing sites will be closed on Thursday, November 26 and Friday, November 27, 2020. 
 
“We are asking our community to be extra cautious this Thanksgiving and to follow guidance from the CDC on ways to safely celebrate,” said Meena Brewster, St. Mary’s County Health Officer. “Celebrating remotely or with members from your immediate household are the safest options. Avoid large gatherings and unnecessary travel to help us slow the spread of COVID-19.”
 
Normal testing operations will resume on Monday, November 30, 2020. For more information on local COVID-19 testing, visit: www.smchd.org/covid-19-testing.
 
If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, call your personal healthcare provider or call ahead to a local urgent care or the hospital’s Emergency Department. Anyone who is experiencing a medical emergency, should call 9-1-1.
 
For local COVID-19 updates, data, and information, please visit the SMCHD website at www.smchd.org/coronavirus or call (301) 475-4330.

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Household Hazardous Waste Collection on Dec. 5

The Department of Public Works is holding a household hazardous waste collection on Saturday, Aug. 1
 
What:                                  Household Hazardous Waste
 
Where:                                Department of Public Works building (10430 Audie Lane, La Plata)
 
When:                                  Saturday, Dec. 5 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. 
 
We are asking our residents to be patient and remain in your vehicle until it is your turn to be served.  Residents are asked to maintain 6 feet of social distancing while at the event, and facial coverings are required when interacting face to face with staff. 
 
Items accepted: pesticides, herbicides, fertilizer, gasoline, oil-based paint, cleaning supplies, pool chemicals, fluorescent lights, mercury thermometers, and other poisons found in the home. Please remember to mark any container that does not have a readable, original label.
 
Unacceptable materials: bio-medical waste (sharps, needles, anything with bodily fluids), latex paint, prescription drugs, and ammunition.  Used motor oil, anti-freeze, propane tanks, and batteries are accepted on a regular basis at various collection sites.  Latex paint is not considered hazardous waste and can be placed in your household trash as long as it is solidified.  This can be accomplished by adding kitty litter, shredded paper, paint hardener, or sawdust to aid in drying it out.
 
For more information, call the Charles County Department of Public Works, Environmental Resources Division at 301-932-3599 or 301-870-2778, or the landfill and recycling information line at 301-932-5656. Citizens with special needs may contact the Maryland Relay Service at 711, or Relay Service TDD:  800-735-2258.

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Calvert County Public Schools Suspend Hybrid Instruction

At their meeting on November 19, 2020, members of the Board of Education voted 3-2 against a proposal to begin hybrid learning for students in Grades 3-5. In addition, given predictions of rising COVID-19 cases locally and statewide, the Board determined by a vote of 4-0 with one abstention that November 19 was the last day of hybrid instruction for students in pre-K through Grade 2. The Board approved the continuation of in-person instruction for students in special populations and certain programs at the Career and Technology Academy. In addition, internet cafes will remain open for students who do not have internet access at home. 

Dr. Daniel D. Curry, Superintendent, said, “The Board made these difficult decisions with a heavy heart. We all want students back in school, yet we must prioritize health and safety.”

Principals will share details about the shift back to fully virtual instruction for pre-K through Grade 2 with families. 

As an added measure of caution to slow the community spread of COVID-19, Calvert County Public Schools will move all instruction to a fully virtual environment from November 30-December 4, which is the week after the Thanksgiving break. 

• No students will attend school face-to-face, including students in special populations and those who attend the Career and Technology Academy.

• Internet cafes will remain open for students who typically attend, and transportation and meals will be provided for those students.

• Buildings will be open for teachers who choose to teach virtually from their classrooms.

• Staff who have been working in buildings will continue to do so.

• Face-to-face tutoring and Saturday school will be canceled November 30-December 5. Virtual tutoring will continue as scheduled. 

• The Grab ‘n Go meals program will be available Friday, December 4, as planned. For more information about Grab ‘n Go meal kits, please visit our website: https://www.calvertnet.k12.md.us/news/ccps_updates_meal_distribution_schedule 

Face-to-face instruction will resume on Monday, December 7, for students in special populations and Career and Technology Academy in-person programs. 

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Noise Advisory - NAS PAX RIVER Sets Noise Advisory for Field Carrier Landing Practice Flights November 23-December 3

PATUXENT RIVER NAVAL AIR STATION, MD – Communities surrounding the naval air station are advised that noise-generating testing events are scheduled to take place November 23 – December 3, 2020 between the hours of 8 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
 
Pilots at NAS PAX will be conducting Field Carrier Landing Practices (FCLPs). FCLPs are simulated carrier landings conducted to prepare the pilot to land safely on an aircraft carrier. Airspeed, altitude, and power are all precisely choreographed in order for a pilot to approach the ship within an acceptable window to land on the deck safely. FCLP training is essential for the precision and safety of our military men and women and the success of their mission. It is a highly complex skill that requires an intense period of training before pilots deploy. Residents may notice increased noise levels due to these operations.
 
As with all operations, NAS Patuxent River takes precautions to lessen the impact of testing activities on the community. For more information call the Pax River toll-free Noise Hotline at 1-866-819-9028.

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Department of Planning and Growth Management Limits Walk-Ins to Thursdays

Due to a significant increase in COVID-19 positivity rates locally and regionally, the Department of Planning and Growth Management will be reducing in-person customer walk-ins to Thursdays only, starting Monday, Nov. 30, to protect the public and employees. All other business days will require an in-person appointment that must be scheduled the previous day by 3 p.m. or earlier.

 

PGM remains open Monday through Friday for telephone and web-based services. For more information or to make an appointment, please call 301-645-0692 or visit: www.CharlesCountyMD.gov/pgmappointment. Citizens with special needs may contact the Maryland Relay Service at 711, or Relay Service TDD: 800-735-2258.

 

We encourage the use of our online services.  Online submissions, project tracking, and payments are available through the Citizen Self Service Portal.  Please visit our website at www.CharlesCountyMD.gov/government/planning-and-growth-management and click on the top news tile on the left, labeled “Citizen Self Service Portal.” 

Citizens with special needs may contact the Maryland Relay Service at 711, or Relay Service TDD: 800-735-2258.

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NAS Patuxent River Transitions to Health Protection Condition Charlie

PATUXENT RIVER – NAS Patuxent River has transitioned from Health Protection Condition (HPCON) Bravo to Charlie effective Nov. 21, 2020 as a result of increasing COVID-19 cases in the Southern Maryland region.
 
HPCONs are protocols for public health emergencies, such as a pandemic. Commanders review and update these HPCONs based on risk levels within a local community and in cooperation with local, state or host nation guidance. Military leaders and public health personnel use them to guide actions taken in response to a health threat.  
 
“Our number one concern is health protection & public safety, followed immediately by mission assurance,” said Capt. John Brabazon, NAS Patuxent River commanding officer. “The decision to move to HPCON Charlie was made as a result of increased COVID transmission rates in the local community as reported by county and state departments of health and the installation public health emergency officer, and at the direction from Naval District Washington.”
 
The implementation of HPCON Charlie will place NAS Patuxent River in an operational status nearly identical to the one it was in prior to June 29, 2020. While the operational mission continues at Pax River, impacts of HPCON Charlie include suspension of some MWR programs, taking some services back to virtual only, limiting the number of personnel in workspaces, and other moves to enforce public health measures. The return to HPCON Charlie also means Navy personnel within the Naval District Washington area of responsibility must limit travel to and from their homes to their place of work, with stops only for essential services such as food, medicine and child care. Dining in at restaurants is not allowed, but take-out is authorized. Military personnel are prohibited from using off-base services such as gyms and barber shops, but may continue to use those facilities on base. Participation in team sports, going to amusement parks, and attendance at parades or other public celebrations is also prohibited.
 
Personnel across all NDW installations should continue to adhere to physical distancing protocols and wear face coverings per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Department of Defense guidelines. Personnel should continue to avoid unnecessary contact and stay home when sick.
 
Patrons are reminded to follow NAS Patuxent River’s social media feeds on Facebook (www.facebook.com/NASPaxRiver) and Twitter (@NASPaxRiverPAO), as well as the NAS Pax River COVID-19 Information page at https://www.cnic.navy.mil/regions/ndw/installations/nas_patuxent_river/ffr/nas-patuxent-river-covid-19-information.html for updates on available base services and hours.
 
For more information about NAS Patuxent River, follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NASPaxRive, on Twitter at @NASPaxRiverPAO, and online at www.cnic.navy.mil/Patuxent. 

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Calvert County Sheriff's Office Incident Report

During the week of November 9 – November 15 deputies of the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office responded to 1,269 calls for service throughout the community. 
 
Arrests:
On November 9, 2020, Deputy Parks responded to San Angelo Drive and Golden West Way in Lusby for the report of an accident involving a school bus. Calvert County Emergency Communications advised a vehicle approached the stopped school bus at a high rate of speed, striking the rear of the bus. Deputy Parks made contact with the driver of the vehicle, Victoria Lynn Tillbery (51), and observed her to have slurred speech and lack of balance. A search of Tillbery’s vehicle was conducted resulting in an unopened Suboxone strip which Tillbery was unable to provide a prescription for. Tillbery was placed under arrest and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where she was charged with CDS: Possession- Not Marijuana and various traffic citations. 
 
On November 9, 2020, Calvert County Emergency Communications received reports of two male subjects that appeared to be overdosing in the parking lot of KFC/Taco Bell in Solomons. The subjects were reported to leave in their vehicle, driving south on Solomons Island Road. Corporal Rector located the vehicle and observed the driver all over the roadway. Corporal Rector conducted a traffic stop of the vehicle under the Thomas Johnson Bridge. Deputy Wilder arrived on scene to assist in the traffic stop and observed the male subjects had already exited the vehicle. Deputy Wilder observed the driver, Wilbert Johnson Hartman (35), to have glassy eyes and slurred speech. A search of Hartman’s person was conducted resulting in a small plastic bag containing a small white rock suspected to be cocaine. A search of the vehicle resulted in two cut red straws containing white residue, as well as a used dose of Naloxone. Hartman was placed under arrest and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with CDS: Possession- Not Marijuana, and CDS: Possession of Paraphernalia. 
 
On November 10, 2020, Deputy Parks conducted a traffic stop on South Solomons Island Road at Calvert Cliffs Parkway in Lusby. Prior to making contact with the driver, Deputy Parks observed the driver to manipulate his hand in a bag sitting on the front seat. Upon making contact with the driver, Jason Michael Mann (38), Mann exited the vehicle and a search was conducted which resulted in a clear capsule containing a white powder suspected to be Heroin, located in the backpack on the front seat. Also located in the vehicle was a pill bottle containing seven clear capsules, all containing a white powder suspected to be Heroin. Mann was placed under arrest and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with CDS: Possession- Not Marijuana. 
 
On November 10, 2020, Deputy Lewis responded to Safeway in Prince Frederick for the report of trespassing. Calvert County Emergency Communications advised a male subject, Sean Luke Braziel (29), was laying on the sidewalk in front of the store. Deputy Lewis was also advised that Braziel had an indefinite trespass warning issued on December 14, 2016, and was also wanted on an active warrant through the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Lewis made contact with Braziel and observed him to have incoherent, slurred speech. Braziel was placed under arrest and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with Trespass: Private Property.
 
On November 11, 2020, Deputy Barger conducted a traffic stop on Southern Maryland Boulevard at Lower Marlboro Road in Huntingtown. Calvert County Emergency Communications advised the registration on the vehicle was reported as stolen through Pennsylvania, and the driver of the vehicle, Steven Terrell Wheeler (26), was wanted on active warrants through Maryland State Police and Prince George’s County. Upon making contact with Wheeler, Deputy Barger observed Wheeler attempting to conceal a clear plastic bag containing suspected marijuana, and detected the strong odor or marijuana emanating from the vehicle. Wheeler exited the vehicle and a search was conducted resulting in a shoe box containing three white pills suspected to be Oxycodone, and a white plastic bag containing suspected marijuana. Wheeler was placed under arrest and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with CDS: Possession-Not Marijuana, CDS: Possession of Marijuana 10 GM+, CDS: Possession of Paraphernalia, and Sell/Possess Stolen Manf No, and served with his warrants.
 
On November 12, 2020, Deputy Gough responded to Hallowing Point Road in Prince Frederick for the report of a vehicle that ran off the roadway. Deputy Gough located the vehicle in the woods across from Hallowing Point Park and made contact with the driver, Kathrina Lyn Hines (39). After Deputy Gough determined Hines was impaired and unable to operate a vehicle, a search of the vehicle was conducted resulting in multiple used and unused syringes, a burned silver spoon with white residue suspected to be Heroin, a broken glass pipe with burnt ends and copper fibers, as well as four clear capsules containing white residue, suspected to be Heroin. Hines was placed under arrest and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where she was charged with CDS: Possession- Not Marijuana, CDS: Possession of Paraphernalia, and CDS Administer Equipment Possession/Distribution. 
 
On November 13, 2020, Deputy Hardy responded to Broomes Island Road in Port Republic for the report of trespassing. The complainant advised that a male subject was at their residence and refused to leave. The complainant advised Deputy Hardy the male was in a basement bedroom and had smoked a PCP cigarette. Deputy Hardy located the male, Drew Michael Mason (31), and observed him to have slurred speech and fall to the ground several times while trying to exit the room. Deputy Hardy also detected the strong chemical odor associated with PCP and observed a vial containing several cigarettes that appeared to be dipped in a liquid. After a brief struggle, Deputies were able to place Mason under arrest and transport him to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with CDS: Possession- Not Marijuana and Resisting/Interfering with Arrest. 
 
On November 14, 2020, Deputy Gott responded to Walgreens in Lusby for the report of a disorderly subject. The complainant advised a male subject, Wendell Rosevelt Knott (47), was harassing customers and loitering outside the store. Calvert County Emergency Communications advised Knott was previously issued a no trespass warning by Deputy Kwitowski on November 3rd, 2020. Deputy Gott located Knott and placed him under arrest. Knott was transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where he was charged with Trespass: Private Property.  
 
On November 15, 2020, Deputy W. McDowell conducted a traffic stop on Chaneyville Road in Owings. Upon making contact with the driver, Dakota Joseph Zollinhofer (20), Deputy McDowell observed Zollinhofer to have bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and lethargic movements. Zollinhofer exited the vehicle and a search was conducted resulting in a cut soda can containing burnt residue, a small glass container containing white powder residue suspected to be Heroin, and two empty pill capsules containing white powder residue suspected to be Heroin. Deputies placed Zollinhofer under arrest and attempted to place him in the patrol vehicle when he began yelling profanities and resisting. Zollinhofer was transported to the Calvert County Detention Center where a secondary search of his person was conducted resulting in a glass smoking device with copper filings and burnt residue located in Zollinhofer’s waist band. Zollinhofer was charged with CDS: Possession- Not Marijuana, Possession of Contraband-Place of Confinement, and CDS: Possession of Paraphernalia. 

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Van Hollen, Cardin Urge Administration to Extend Loan Facilities to Provide Critical Economic Relief to Small Businesses, Local Governments

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), a member of the Senate Appropriations and Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committees and Ben Cardin (D-Md.), ranking member of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, sent a letter to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and Department of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin urging them to extend the Main Street Lending Program (MSLP) and the Municipal Liquidity Facility (MLF) past the current December 31, 2020 deadline. In their letter, the Senators stress the importance of extending these resources to support our local businesses and governments that have been hard-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing economic crisis. The economic consequences of the pandemic have caused many businesses to shutter and have left state and local governments facing budget shortfalls, leading to job losses for many Americans. As the Senators continue to push their Republican colleagues to come to the table on an urgently-needed relief package, the extension of these facilities is also crucial in helping small businesses and local governments get by.

 

“Our economy remains in the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic with a new wave threatening to reap an even greater human and economic toll in the weeks to come. At this time of grave danger to the American people, it is important that the Federal Reserve and Department of the Treasury utilize its monetary policy tools to address the pandemic’s impact on our economy,” the Senators begin. “You should use your authorities to extend the Main Street Lending Program (MSLP) and the Municipal Liquidity Facility (MLF) and clarify the use of authority to make new loans after December 31, 2020.”

 

The Senators noted that in May, Chairman Powell said that the Federal Reserve’s tools would only be taken away when the crisis ended. With new cases in the U.S. reaching record highs and no sign of this crisis ending, they underscore the continued need for these resources.

 

“As Americans lose their jobs, many are now unable to afford their most basic expenses. In 2019, the Federal Reserve estimated that 40% of Americans would find it difficult to come up with $400 for an unexpected expense. Americans are facing these unexpected emergencies now,” the Senators write.

 

The Senators stress the urgency of the request, noting, “While Congress works to pass another fiscal relief package, it is urgent you take action now on this issue. We are less than seven weeks away from the expiration of these facilities. Moreover, the Federal Reserve and U.S. banks will stop accepting applications prior to the deadline. According to the Federal Reserve’s October statement, the MLF will cease accepting notices of interest for loans at 30 days before the expiration of the facility. That means that entities only have three weeks left to access this facility. Thank you again for your consideration of this very important matter.”

 

The full text of the letter can be viewed here and below:

 

Dear Secretary Mnuchin and Chairman Powell:

 

Our economy remains in the grip of the COVID-19 pandemic with a new wave threatening to reap an even greater human and economic toll in the weeks to come. At this time of grave danger to the American people, it is important that the Federal Reserve and Department of the Treasury utilize its monetary policy tools to address the pandemic’s impact on our economy. Most important, you should use your authorities to extend the Main Street Lending Program (MSLP) and the Municipal Liquidity Facility (MLF) and clarify the use of authority to make new loans after December 31, 2020. The current December 31 end date for these facilities would come too early to allow these facilities to be fully effective. 

 

This past May, Chairman Powell said that these tools will only be put away when the crisis ends. This crisis is far from ending. Data from Johns Hopkins University indicates that new cases in the U.S. are at a record high. Johns Hopkins data also found that on November 13 alone there were 180,000 new cases reported.

 

These numbers are alarming and not just because of the public health implications. If we have learned nothing else from these past nine months, we know that the economy will not be fully restored until we have solved this public health crisis. While we have seen our financial markets rebound, most Americans are not benefiting from this limited recovery. Small businesses, particularly retailers, bars, music venues, transportation companies, and restaurants continue to be hard hit. The economic impacts are not just being felt by small businesses, state and local governments have also been hard hit by the pandemic. Moody’s Analytics estimates that state and local governments will see budget shortfalls of as much as $650 billion over the next two years. These business closures and budget shortfalls have led to job losses. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics’ most recent report found that the number of permanent job losses totaled 3.7 million in October, which is 2.4 million higher than in February. More troubling, the number of long-term unemployed increased by 1.2 million to 3.6 million accounting for 32.5 percent of the total unemployed.

 

As Americans lose their jobs, many are now unable to afford their most basic expenses. In 2019, the Federal Reserve estimated that 40% of Americans would find it difficult to come up with $400 for an unexpected expense. Americans are facing these unexpected emergencies now. Between September and October, 2.3 million more Americans said that it was “very difficult” to pay their usual household expenses. And, the National Council of State Housing Agencies recently released a report that found that, by January 2021, American renters will owe up to $34 billion in back rent.

 

While Congress works to pass another fiscal relief package, it is urgent you take action now on this issue. We are less than seven weeks away from the expiration of these facilities. Moreover, the Federal Reserve and U.S. banks will stop accepting applications prior to the deadline. According to the Federal Reserve’s October statement, the MLF will cease accepting notices of interest for loans at 30 days before the expiration of the facility. That means that entities only have three weeks left to access this facility. Thank you again for your consideration of this very important matter.

 

 

Sincerely,

 

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Charles County Sheriff's Officers Receive Maryland Retailers Association 2020 Law Enforcement Award

(CHARLES COUNTY, MD)… Detective Christina Gilroy and Police Officer First Class Jack Austin of the Charles County Sheriff’s Office were recently awarded the 2020 Law Enforcement Award by the Maryland Retailers Association. The officers were recognized during a virtual ceremony held on October 29.
 
            In 2019, Detective Gilroy and PFC Austin investigated an increase in thefts from local big box stores. Through their tireless efforts and with the support of retail establishments including Target, Home Depot, and Walmart, they were able to develop leads, obtain search warrants, and eventually arrest the suspects in connection with the thefts. More than $100,000 in merchandise was stolen and approximately $80,000 in merchandise was recovered from this theft scheme. Since the charging of the suspects, the thefts have greatly decreased in our area.
 
            Detective Chrissy Gilroy, who was recently promoted to the rank of Sergeant and assumed a Supervisor position in the Patrol Division, served in the Financial Crimes Unit in the Criminal Investigations Division as a Detective. With 14 years of law enforcement experience, Chrissy has used her career to focus on solving elaborate frauds, embezzlements, continuous theft schemes, and burglaries. PFC Jack Austin, currently assigned to the Patrol Division, has served with the Charles County Sheriff’s Office for nearly 20 years. The majority of his career has been spent in the Criminal Investigations Division, where he has served in the Property Crimes Unit, Special Victims Unit, Robbery Unit, and Homicide Unit. 
 
            The Maryland Retailers Association’s Law Enforcement Awards were established in 1999 to recognize the activities, accomplishments, and performance of law enforcement officers who affect the daily business lives of Maryland merchants. For details, visit https://www.mdra.org/about/giving-back/law-enforcement-award/.

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St. Mary's County Government Announces Thanksgiving Holiday Operations

LEONARDTOWN, MD – All St. Mary’s County Government administrative offices will be closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 26 and 27, in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday.  Appointments for many departmental services will resume Monday, Nov. 30.

 

Landfill and Convenience Centers
The St. Andrews Landfill and all six county Convenience Centers will be closed for Thanksgiving Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020, but will be open for normal business hours Friday, Nov. 27. For hours of operation and information on services, please visit https://www.stmarysmd.com/dpw/recycling-solid-waste/.

 

Transit
The St. Mary’s County Transit System (STS) will not operate on Thanksgiving Day. STS service will resume Friday, Nov. 27, 2020, operating on a Saturday schedule, with only Routes 6, 7, 11, 12 and 14 running. A complete schedule of regular STS services is available online.

 

Statewide Specialized Transportation Assistance Program (SSTAP) services will not operate Thursday or Friday. Regular operations will resume Monday, Nov. 30. SSTAP service information is available online at https://www.stmarysmd.com/dpw/SSTAP.asp.

 

Regular ADA services will operate Friday.

 

Libraries
All three St. Mary’s County library locations (Charlotte Hall, Leonardtown and Lexington Park) will be closed Thursday and Friday, Nov. 26, and 27. Library services will resume under COVID-19 Operations Monday, Nov. 30. For information on library operations and services, please visit https://www.stmalib.org/.

 

Senior Services
All St. Mary’s County Senior Activity Centers (Garvey, Loffler and Northern) remain closed due to COVID-19 restrictions.

 

Please visit the St. Mary’s County Government website at www.stmarysmd.com for further information.

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St. Mary's County Announces Local Guidance in Accordance with Governor's Latest Orders

LEONARDTOWN, MD –Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020, Governor Hogan issued an emergency order that takes the following actions—effective Friday, Nov. 20 at 5 p.m.:

All bars, restaurants, and venues serving food and alcohol must close between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., except for the purposes of carryout and delivery.

Capacity at retail establishments and religious facilities will be reduced to 50%, bringing them into line with indoor dining and personal services businesses, as well as bingo halls, bowling alleys, pool halls, roller- and ice-skating rinks, fitness centers, and social and fraternal clubs.

State health officials have issued an emergency order to prohibit all hospital visitation until further notice with some exceptions—including end-of-life care, obstetrics, parents or guardians of minors, and support for people with disabilities. Read the order.

State health officials have issued an emergency order allowing hospitals that are either full or nearing capacity limits to transfer patients to hospitals that are equipped to provide them with the care they need. This will help alleviate the overcrowded hospitals in some areas of the state, and place patients in hospitals where beds are available. Read the order.

State health officials have issued guidance warning hospitals and other medical facilities to avoid any elective procedure admissions that are not urgent or life-saving—especially if they are likely to require prolonged artificial ventilation, ICU admissions, or may have a high probability of requiring post-hospital care in a skilled nursing facility. Read the guidance.

Until further notice, indoor visitation at Maryland nursing homes will generally be limited to compassionate care, and all visitors must have proof of a negative COVID-19 test result within 72 hours before their visit. Read the order.

State health officials have issued an order instituting mandatory twice-weekly testing for all staff at Maryland nursing homes, as well as mandatory weekly testing for all nursing home residents—effective no later than Friday, Nov. 20. Read the order.

In response, St. Mary’s County Government is acting in accordance with the Governor’s orders and is operating under the St. Mary’s County COVID-19 Pandemic Roadmap to Recovery. Please note that St. Mary’s County is permitted to be more restrictive than the state of Maryland, but not less restrictive.

 

Eligible St. Mary’s County employees continue to operate under the maximum telework policy. Walk-in service will not be available for county offices. County services will continue to be provided via telephone, email and US Mail. Offices may offer appointments and package drop boxes locations. For information regarding appointments, please visit the St. Mary’s County Government website and specific Department pages.

 

At this time, there will be no changes to the St. Mary’s Transit System operations, Recreation and Parks programs, or landfill and convenience center services. Senior Activity Centers remain closed. A complete list of county operations is available on the COVID-19 Operations Updates and Changes webpage.

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MDOT to Shift Traffic on Route 5 in Leonardtown

LEONARDTOWN, MD - The Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA) will shift traffic along MD 5 as part of the Abell and Moakley Streets intersection improvements Monday night, Nov. 23, starting at 9 p.m.

MDOT SHA’s contractor will stripe and shift the travel lanes within the work zone overnight. This temporary traffic pattern will allow crews to work on the curb and gutter and ADA-compliant sidewalk. Once in place, drivers will continue to use two travel lanes in each direction; daytime single-lane closures are still permitted Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

 Portable variable message signs will advise drivers of the upcoming changing traffic pattern. MDOT SHA works to maintain safe traffic mobility in work zones for our crews and our customers. Drivers are reminded to stay alert, focus on driving, and look for reduced speed limits, as well as other driving pattern changes. For a list of all major MDOT SHA projects, go to roads.maryland.gov. For a look at real-time traffic conditions, go to md511.maryland.gov. Customers with questions may contact the MDOT SHA District 5 Office at 410-841-1000 or toll-free at 1-800-331-5603. 

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Fatal Collision in Mechanicsville Under Investigation

Nov. 18, 2020:
 
On Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020 at 1:33 pm, St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office Patrol Deputies were dispatched to a motor vehicle crash at North Sandgates Road near the intersection of Cavalier Street. Deputies arrived on the scene where a single vehicle drove off the roadway and into a wooded ravine. The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office Collision Reconstruction Unit responded to the scene.
 
Preliminary investigation determined the 2012 Jeep Compass, operated by Douglas Calvin Benfield, 69 of Mechanicsville, was traveling northbound on North Sandgates Road toward Route 235 when for unknown reasons the vehicle left the roadway and crashed into a ravine. Benfield was declared as deceased at the scene by emergency first responders.
 
At this time, speed and alcohol do not appear to be contributing factors in the collision.
 
Anyone who may have witnessed the collision or any events leading up to the crash is asked to call DFC Jason Smith at 301-475-4200, ext. 72328.
 
For official news and information, follow the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office on Twitter @firstsheriff

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To Fight COVID-19 Surge, Governor Hogan Announces Hospital Surge Measures, Statewide Capacity Restrictions

Emergency Orders To Restrict Hospital and Nursing Home Visitation, Alleviate Overcrowding at Medical Facilities
Institutes 10 PM Closure for Bars and Restaurants, 50% Capacity for Retail and Religious Establishments
 
ANNAPOLIS, MD—With widespread community transmission across the state and surging COVID-19 metrics across the country, Governor Larry Hogan today announced immediate actions to prevent overburdening the state’s healthcare system and to keep more Marylanders from dying.
 
“We are in a war right now, and the virus is winning,” said Governor Hogan. “Now more than ever, I am pleading with the people of our state to stand together a while longer to help us battle this surging virus. Your family and friends are counting on you, your neighbors are counting on you, and your fellow Marylanders are counting on you to stay ‘Maryland Strong.’”
 
Dr. Thomas Scalea, physician-in-chief of shock trauma at the University of Maryland Medical Center, also spoke at today’s press conference.
 
In addition to today’s new actions, the governor announced that he will participate in a call on Thursday with President-elect Joe Biden and his transition team.
 
NEW ACTIONS EFFECTIVE FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 20 AT 5 PM: 
 
The governor has issued an emergency order that takes the following actions—effective Friday, November 20 at 5 p.m.:
 
10 PM CLOSURE FOR BARS AND RESTAURANTS STATEWIDE. All bars, restaurants, and venues serving food and alcohol must close between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., except for the purposes of carryout and delivery.
 
LIMITED CAPACITY FOR RETAIL ESTABLISHMENTS AND RELIGIOUS FACILITIES. Capacity at retail establishments and religious facilities will be reduced to 50%, bringing them into line with indoor dining and personal services businesses, as well as bingo halls, bowling alleys, pool halls, roller and ice skating rinks, fitness centers, and social and fraternal clubs.
 
NO FANS FOR RACETRACKS AND STADIUMS. No fans will be permitted at racetracks or professional and collegiate stadiums across the state.
 
Businesses with questions about today’s orders should contact Secretary.Commerce@Maryland.gov.
 
ACTIONS ON HOSPITAL SURGE MANAGEMENT AND VISITATION: 
 
HOSPITAL VISITATION PROHIBITED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. State health officials have issued an emergency order to prohibit all hospital visitation until further notice with some exceptions—including end-of-life care, obstetrics, parents or guardians of minors, and support for people with disabilities. Read the order.
 
NEW HOSPITAL SURGE MANAGEMENT ORDER. State health officials have issued an emergency order allowing hospitals that are either full or nearing capacity limits to transfer patients to hospitals that are equipped to provide them with the care they need. This will help alleviate the overcrowded hospitals in some areas of the state, and place patients in hospitals where beds are available. Read the order.
 
GUIDANCE ON ELECTIVE PROCEDURES. State health officials have issued guidance warning hospitals and other medical facilities to avoid any elective procedure admissions that are not urgent or life-saving—especially if they are likely to require prolonged artificial ventilation, ICU admissions, or may have a high probability of requiring post-hospital care in a skilled nursing facility. Read the guidance.
 
ACTIONS ON HOTSPOTS AND NURSING HOMES:
 
NEW LIMITATIONS ON NURSING HOME VISITATION. Until further notice, indoor visitation at Maryland nursing homes will generally be limited to compassionate care, and all visitors must have proof of a negative COVID-19 test result within 72 hours prior to their visit. Read the order.
 
NURSING HOME TESTING SURGE. State health officials have issued an order instituting mandatory twice-weekly testing for all staff at Maryland nursing homes, as well as mandatory weekly testing for all nursing home residents—effective no later than Friday, November 20. Read the order.
 
MORE RAPID RESPONSE TEAMS FOR HOTSPOTS AND OUTBREAKS. To tackle acute outbreaks, Governor Hogan is doubling the number of rapid response teams deployed to provide an extra level of triage and supplement local staffing needs.

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Two Suspects Charged in Assault, Strong-Armed Robbery

Detectives with the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office- Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB)
have arrested two men wanted in connection with an assault and strong-armed
robbery that occurred on October 24, 2020 in Prince Frederick, MD. In that case, the
victim advised the two suspects agreed to provide him with a ride to his residence.
During the ride, the two males began assaulting the victim and removing his property, to
include: a Louis Vuitton bag, a wallet, California ID card, cash, and miscellaneous bank
cards and then fled the scene.
Detectives developed leads and the suspects were identified as Delonte Antonio Johnson,
20 of Bushwood, MD and Cortez Bridges III, 19 of Indian Head, MD. Both men were
apprehended and transported to the Calvert County Detention Center. Johnson and
Bridges were charged with Robbery, Assault 2nd Degree, and Theft $1500 but less than
$25,000.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact Det. J. Livingston at
(410) 535-2800, refer to case number 20-55592 or use the ‘Submit a Tip’ feature on our
mobile app. To download the app, visit https://apps.myocv.com/share/a39520678 .

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November 17th St. Mary's County Commissioner Meeting

LEONARDTOWN, MD – The Commissioners of St. Mary's County held their regular business meeting Tuesday, Nov. 17, in the Chesapeake Building in Leonardtown.
 
The meeting started with a joint meeting between the Commissioners of St. Mary's County and the Metropolitan Commission (MetCom). The Commissioners heard from Department of Public Works & Transportation Department Director John Deatrick and MetCom Chief Engineer Christy Hollander about ongoing projects to improve infrastructure in Lexington Park and St. Clements Shores.
 
The Commissioners approved a request from the Department of Land Use and Growth Management for a Public Hearing on the proposed amendments to the Comprehensive Water and Sewerage Plan for St. Clements Shores. The Commissioners approved the Public hearing request to take place on Dec. 8 at 11:30 a.m. in the Commissioners Meeting Room in the Chesapeake Building in Leonardtown.
 
Robbie Gill with YMCA of the Chesapeake and Lori Swann with Triangle2 briefed the Commissioners with an update on the YMCA Feasibility Study. Following the update, the Commissioners unanimously approved the next step in the process – a fundraising study.
 
The Commissioners accepted a combined grant award from the Maryland Department of Transportation $2,024,651 on behalf of St. Mary's Transit (STS).
 
The Commissioners approved an amendment to the Maryland Community Development Block Grant Project, Rogers Drive Extension, and authorized $20,000 from the Commissioners Reserve to pay for the labor costs to replace a broken pipe.
 
St. Mary's County Economic Development Director Chris Kaselemis appeared before the Commissioners to recommend approval of a one-year lease with Home Grown Farm Market, LLC, for the management of local farmers' markets.
 
After a brief adjournment, the Commissioners reconvened at 2 p.m. to hear from the Maryland Department of Transportation for the 2020 Consolidated Transportation Tour. Sean Powell, Deputy Secretary, MDOT, and other directors updated the Commissioners on transportation initiatives.
 
The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Commissioners of St. Mary's County is Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020. Commissioner agendas can be found on the county website each Friday before the Commissioner Meeting.
 
Commissioner decisions and related public documents are available on the county government website in BoardDocs. St. Mary's County Commissioner Meetings may be viewed live Tuesday mornings on SMCG Channel 95 or as a replay Friday nights at 6:30 p.m. Meetings are also available for on-demand viewing on the St. Mary's County Government YouTube Channel.

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Fatal Motor Vehicle Crash on Billingsley Road in Waldorf

Fatal Motor Vehicle Crash on Billingsley Road in Waldorf: On November 16 at 8 p.m., officers responded to the area of Billingsley Road near St Patricks Drive in Waldorf for the report of a crash involving two vehicles. A preliminary investigation showed the driver of a Subaru was travelling westbound on Billingsley Road when he struck a Volvo that was making a left turn from eastbound Billingsley onto St Patricks Drive. The driver of the Subaru, Michael T. Duke, 23, of Waldorf was pronounced deceased on the scene. The driver of the Volvo, a 36-year-old man, was flown to a hospital with serious injuries. Anyone with information is asked to call PFC D. Spence at 301-932-3519. The investigation is ongoing.

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