Baltimore County Now
Opening a World of Recreation for People with Disabilities
One of the greatest joys of my job is to watch the expression on the face of a parent or grandparent of a child or young adult with disabilities when they learn about the programs offered by the Office of Therapeutic Recreation (TR).
It’s like watching a light go off or separating the clouds to reveal a bright beam of sunshine. “I didn’t know” is often what we hear.
Specifically Designed Programs
The Department of Recreation and Parks is quite proud of the services offered through our “TR” programs. Under the superb leadership and advocacy of an exceptional staff and dedicated volunteers, TR offers a wide variety of programs designed specifically for individuals with disabilities, their family members and friends.
Imagine opening up a world of adaptive sports and fitness programming as an option in the life of an individual with disabilities. There is the Therapeutic Horseback Riding Program offered as a cooperative effort between TR and the Maryland Council for Special Equestrians. Individuals with special needs can participate in “Barn Buddies,” “Meet the Horse” field trips, and two summer camps “Ride with Pride” and “Everything Horses.”
“The Sky is the Limit” community theatre in Dundalk offers people with disabilities the chance to shine on stage and behind the scenes in various productions through the year, including a summer performing arts camp.
TR options also include arts and crafts, adaptive aquatics through the League for People with Disabilities, Inc., and adaptive water-skiing in cooperation with Baltimore Adapted Recreation and Sports at Rocky Point Park in Essex.
TR operates 10 summer day camps that run for five weeks throughout the county with swimming, nature, crafts, sports, games and field trips as only a part of the fun and well supervised programs.
Social dances, social programs, sign language classes and horticultural therapy (TALMAR – Therapeutic Alternatives of Maryland) are a part of the vast, impressive and valued services offered through TR.
Details of the TR program are readily available through the office of Therapeutic Recreation by simply calling for your copy the bi-annual newsletter “Leisure Resources” (PDF) at 410-887-5370 (410-887-5319 TTY/Deaf).
Please help us deliver the message of this service by shouting from the rooftops; TR’s a true point of pride in that Baltimore County crown; don’t let it be a secret…let this hidden jewel shine!
New tax benefits are available to businesses investing in industrial and commercial development on 7,000 acres in eastern Baltimore County. Maryland has approved a new Chesapeake Enterprise Zone to spur expansion of existing companies, promote development of vacant and underutilized properties and provide incentives for businesses to hire and add jobs.
Businesses locating, expanding or hiring new workers in the enterprise zone could be eligible for real property and income tax credits, according to the Baltimore County Department of Economic and Workforce Development.
“Now is the time to put enterprise zone incentives to work so we can bring family-supporting jobs back to eastern Baltimore County. We have some exciting opportunity sites and these tax benefits can help offset the costs of redeveloping and upgrading almost 900 older industrial and commercial properties in the new Chesapeake Enterprise Zone. This will go a long way toward attracting business investment to Sparrows Point, Middle River, Essex and Dundalk,” said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.
Major opportunity sites in the new Chesapeake Enterprise Zone include the 3,100 acre Sparrows Point peninsula, slated to become a hub for manufacturing, transportation and port related uses. The one million square foot Middle River Depot, a former World War II aircraft plant on Eastern Boulevard at Maryland Route 43, offers transit-oriented development opportunities with the MARC commuter rail station.
Expands Previous North Point Enterprise Zone
The Chesapeake Enterprise Zone replaces and expands an existing North Point Enterprise Zone and now includes 877 industrial and commercial properties. A map of the Chesapeake Enterprise Zone is on the County's website at http://resources.baltimorecountymd.gov/Documents/EconomicDevel/Enterprise/chesapeakeezmap.pdf.
Baltimore County’s new Chesapeake Enterprise Zone includes all of the area in the North Point Enterprise Zone, plus the portion of the Sparrows Point peninsula not previously included in the zone, the Middle River Depot and portions of the Eastern Avenue business corridor.
“Enterprise Zone status expands an important economic development tool for eastern Baltimore County,” said Baltimore County Council chair Cathy Bevins. “I’m especially pleased that enterprise zone benefits are now available to jumpstart development opportunities at Middle River Depot. This is a unique property with tremendous potential for advanced manufacturing, medical services and a host of job-producing industries.”
“Expanding the Enterprise Zone to include more industrial acreage on the Sparrows Point peninsula as well as parts of the Eastern Avenue corridor is the latest step in our commitment to assist Sparrows Point Terminal and the local business community in bringing new jobs back to the district,” said County Councilman Todd Crandell, who represents the Dundalk area.
Over $300 Million Invested Since 1995
"Over the past twenty years, enterprise zone designation has been a catalyst for more than $300 million in new private investment in eastern Baltimore County," said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz. "Since the original North Point Enterprise Zone was established in 1995, vacant industrial buildings have become thriving manufacturing, logistics and supply chain hubs that take advantage of the area’s direct access to interstates, the deepwater Port of Baltimore and commercial rail.”
The Marshfield Business Park was developed on vacant land, with four major buildings and a total investment of almost $30 million. The former Eastern Stainless Steel property was redeveloped as the Baltimore Business Park and the Eastport Industrial Center was built on Quad Avenue. New companies such as Empire Resources, Dejana Truck Bodies, Fascan and H and E Equipment have moved to the zone, with 16 companies adding jobs since 2005.
Enterprise Zone Tax Benefits
The Maryland Enterprise Zone Program gives local governments the authority to offer tax incentives for investments and new job creation in economically distressed areas. Non-retail business located in a Baltimore County enterprise zone could be eligible for real property tax credits on the value of property improvements. Companies adding new employees also may be eligible for a state income tax credit based on the number of net new workers.
More information on Enterprise Zone benefits is available at www.BaltimoreCountyBusiness.com .
Businesses interested in locating or expanding in the Chesapeake Enterprise Zone should contact the Baltimore County Department of Economic and Workforce Development, 410-887-8000.
39 Locally Owned Businesses to be Recognized
Thirty-nine locally owned businesses will be recognized for their contributions to the well-being of Baltimore County’s traditional commercial districts.
“Our local business districts and their retail entrepreneurs add to the quality of life we enjoy. These unique shops, restaurants and services are central to the communities they serve,” said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.
The Baltimore County Department of Planning invited chambers of commerce and business associations to nominate outstanding individuals, institutions and locally owned businesses that have made an impact in economic vitality, design, promotion, sustainability and leadership.
The following nominees will be recognized at a reception and awards ceremony June 3 at the UMBC University Center Ballroom.
Best Neighborhood Service/Retailer/Restaurant
Calico Cat (Security/Woodlawn)
EarthTouch Healing Arts (Dundalk)
Caton Auto Clinic (Catonsville)
State Farm (Liberty Road)
Colin’s Seafood & Grill (Liberty Road)
Dunkin’ Donuts (Liberty Road)
Herb & Soul (Loch Raven)
Gourmet Again (Pikesville)
The Grill at Harryman House (Reisterstown)
Best New Construction using Architect on Call and/or Business Improvement Loan
Ristorante Firenze (Reisterstown)
Best Small-Scale Façade Improvement
Dugan’s Liquors (Pikesville)
Main Street Grill (Reisterstown)
Fractured Prune (Towson)
Bob Davidson Ford (Loch Raven)
Outstanding Community Event
Catonsville Arts and Crafts Festival (Catonsville)
Dundalk Heritage Fair (Dundalk)
Concerts in the Park (Dundalk)
Holiday Event and National Night Out (Liberty Road)
Overlea Community Tree Lighting (Overlea)
Spring Concert Series (Parkville)
Best Marketing Campaign
Ristorante Firenze (Reisterstown)
Towson Tipster App (Towson)
Shop the ‘Ville (Catonsville)
Member Spotlight Mondays (Parkville)
Best Business/Organization Website
Liberty Road Community Calendar (Liberty Road)
Parkville Carney Business Association (Parkville)
The Grill at Harryman House (Reisterstown)
Best Clean-up or Greening Project
Paradise Community Association (Catonsville)
Randallstown Gateway Park (Liberty Road)
Dundalk Renaissance Corporation (Dundalk)
Coldwell Banker (Catonsville)
Liberty Road Volunteer Fire Department (Liberty Road)
Jason Plotkin, President Parkville Carney Business Association (Parkville)
Carin Smith, Reisterstown Improvement Association (Reisterstown)
Best Community Institution
The Children’s Home (Catonsville)
Dundalk Chamber of Commerce (Dundalk)
Northwest Hospital (Liberty Road)
Erin Travis, Trails & Tails Pet Care (Catonsville)
Tim Bojanowski, Zest Social Media (Towson)
“Keeping our older commercial areas strong is a priority for Baltimore County. The Commercial Revitalization Program offers tools to support small businesses in 17 older commercial areas throughout the County,” said Andrea Van Arsdale, Director of the Baltimore County Department of Planning. "We encourage businesses and commercial property owners to work with our revitalization representatives to access district tax credits, architectural design services to improve the exterior of buildings, loans to help implement improvements and other technical assistance.”
More information about the Baltimore County Commercial Revitalization Program is available on line or by calling 410-887-3480.