Baltimore County News
Baltimore County’s November unemployment rate fell to 4.3%, down 0.2% from the previous month, a positive employment trend in Maryland’s third largest jurisdiction. The U.S. unemployment rate stands at 4.4%.
“This is a strong jobs report for Baltimore County workers. When companies hire, it’s a signal of confidence in our economy,” said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.
E-devices now available for library patrons to use in branches and borrow
Baltimore County Public Library (BCPL) is starting off the new year with new technology in its collection for loan and in-branch usage, thanks to funding from Baltimore County Government. The new items, which include Playaway Locks, Chromebooks, GoChips and mobile training labs, will be available at all of BCPL’s 19 branches.
While all BCPL locations have public computers, adding these take-home devices to the collection allows Baltimore County residents the flexibility to advance their technical skills and overall digital literacy as their schedule permits.
“The availability of these devices provides tools for every citizen in Baltimore County to have access to acquire the skills and resources needed for success," said BCPL Director Paula Miller. "Access to these devices will help to lessen the ‘digital divide’ by providing equal access to those that may not have the opportunity to learn and experiment with technology.”
“We initiated this new tech option in our libraries because adding these e-devices allows County residents to access the latest technology, be more computer-literate, and learn the technical skills that are so vital now in our workplaces and global economy,” said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.
Beginning today, BCPL’s 19 branches have the following:
- 210 Playaway Locks (e-readers) loaded with five books on each one. The Playaway Locks float (like all the other materials at the library) – which means it is shelved wherever it is returned by customers. Customers are able to request from one branch to another for pickup. Loan period is three weeks. http://playaway.com/lock/
- 380 Chromebooks with equal distribution to each of the 19 branches (20 at each branch). This is similar to a laptop and provides an opportunity for people to access the internet. Also, customers are able to request from one branch to another for pickup. Loan period is seven days. Chromebooks come preloaded with a variety of apps. https://www.google.com/chromebook/
- Two Mobile Training Labs each complete with 20 student and one (1) instructor laptop per lab. Each lab is a set of 20 laptops to float between branches for staff and customer training via programming.
- Available in early 2017: GoChips, a portable device preloaded with video content of movies or television series that can be connected wirelessly to a smartphone, tablet or computer without managing storage, internet streaming or data charges. Quantity and loan period TBD. https://gochip.com/
This purchase was made possible by Baltimore County Government as part of a budget initiative of County Executive Kamenetz. The FY17 budget included $500,000 in the Office of Information Technology’s Enhanced Productivity Thru Technology capital project. More information is available on BCPL technology at http://bcpl.info/technology
Baltimore County Public Library (BCPL) has served the citizens of Baltimore County since 1948. With 19 branches throughout Baltimore County, BCPL empowers and engages individuals for a more inclusive and connected Baltimore County community, and provides opportunities to explore, learn, create and connect. In addition to loaning books, library card holders may borrow DVDs, music, ebooks and gain access to our research databases. Branches provide computer and internet access, job search assistance and offer a multitude of daily learning programs for adults and children. For more information about branches and services, visit bcpl.info or follow BCPL on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Participating Restaurants to Offer Specials January 20 to February 4
The Baltimore County Office of Tourism and Promotion, the Baltimore County Chamber of Commerce, RestaurantReputations.com, Sysco, and Boulevard Brewing are pleased to announce the 13th Baltimore County Restaurant Week beginning on Friday, January 20. Many restaurants have joined the January promotion, and many more are expected to register before the start.
Participating restaurants will feature special menus at discounted, fixed prices, offering one to three course brunch, lunch, and dinner specials ranging from $15 to $35.
“Foodies and patrons alike look forward to Restaurant Week—it’s a great time for them to experience places they’ve been meaning to try at a big savings,” stated Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz. “I encourage everyone to experience the many diverse cuisines in the County and support the local restaurant industry.”
For a list of all participating restaurants and menus, visit www.baltimorecountyrestaurantweek.com.
Media partners for the promotion include Downtown Diane, The Restaurant Association of Maryland, and CITYpeek.