Baltimore County News
Says “Enough is enough!”
Baltimore County Executive Don Mohler issued the following statement following this morning’s workplace shooting in Aberdeen, Maryland:
Once again, a tragic act of gun violence has hit close to home as mass shootings have become the norm. Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims of such senseless violence, and to their families. But these words have begun to ring hollow as we have had 25 mass shootings in September and more than 150 this year. Enough is enough.
If as leaders and communities, we don’t demand action, and demand it now, we should be embarrassed. This country is too great, its people too good, to remain in our bunkers stuck with talking points from the right or the left. There is not a “one size fits all” solution to the gun violence epidemic. It is about mental health. And although some may not like it, it is about easy access to guns. Complex issues rarely present binary choices. They are not “either/or.” They are difficult.
“Now is not the time …” is a weak excuse to do nothing. Doing nothing at a time when gun violence is terrorizing our communities is nonsense, plain and simple. Now, more than ever, is the time to act.
We’ve never backed down from challenges in our nation, and we can’t back down now. If we pass this cancer onto the next generation, the blood will be on our hands.Thu, 20 Sep 2018 18:09:00 GMThttps://www.baltimorecountymd.gov/News/BaltimoreCountyNow/baltimore-county-executive-don-mohler-reacts-to-shooting-in-aberdeen
Thousands of Volunteers Collected Tons of Litter in 15-Minute Clean-ups
Baltimore County is a little bit cleaner and greener thanks to the efforts of school children and community members who participated in this year’s Team BCPS Clean Green 15 Litter Challenge. County Executive Don Mohler, Baltimore County Public Schools (BCPS) Superintendent Verletta White and Debbie Phelps, Executive Director of the Education Foundation of Baltimore County Public Schools, announced this morning that twelve Baltimore County public schools were winners in this program, which resulted in thousands of volunteers participating in more than three hundred litter clean-ups around the County over the past year.
“We are just delighted with the enthusiastic response we’ve gotten to this program from our students, teachers and groups in the community who take pride in helping to clean up our neighborhoods and keep litter out of our waterways and the environment,” Mohler said.
“The Clean Green 15 Challenge is an effective, real-world way for our students to learn about the environment as they demonstrate pride in their schools and communities,” said BCPS Superintendent Verletta White.
“The Clean Green 15 challenge is a great, hands-on way for students and community members to get involved and make a difference by putting litter in its place,” said Baltimore County Council Chair Julian Jones.
Clean Green 15 Results:
Tons of Litter Collected, Thousands of Grant Dollars Distributed to Schools!
The 2018 program resulted in 338 clean-ups conducted by 5,057 volunteers who picked up 3,471 bags of litter and debris. This is a 29% increase in volunteers over last year!
In addition to litter, Clean Green 15 volunteers collected many tons of bulk trash items from parks, streambanks, schoolyards and other locations around Baltimore County. Clean-ups included schoolchildren as well as community-based volunteer activity.
Through the Team BCPS Clean Green 15 Litter Challenge, the Education Foundation of Baltimore County Public Schools awarded grants to the top winning schools to fund school-based instructional projects emphasizing the theme of environmental literacy. Examples could include installing a reading garden or rain garden, planting trees, diverting downspouts, or environmental education projects. Six schools won Honorable Mention awards and received technology prizes.
Team BCPS Clean Green 15 Litter Challenge
Reisterstown Elementary School
General John Stricker Middle School
Elementary Schools Prize
Chesapeake Terrace Elementary School
Middle Schools Prize
Parkville Middle School and Center for Technology
High Schools Prize
Dulaney High School
Special Schools Prize
Battle Monument School
Bear Creek Elementary School
Edgemere Elementary School
Lansdowne High School
Milbrook Elementary School
Perry Hall Middle School
Stoneleigh Elementary School
BGE, Comcast, Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability
Clean Green 15 is Underway for Next Year
In addition to awarding prizes to the winning schools from this year, officials also announced that the Team BCPS Clean Green 15 Litter Challenge is on for next year, with groups eligible to log clean-ups from May 1, 2018 through April 30, 2019 for consideration in next year’s awards.
Through this program, BCPS schools and their community supporters conducted quick 15-minute litter clean-ups and competed from last May through this April to see which school communities could log the most clean-ups. The program is open to any group, including school-based groups, places of worship, youth groups, civic or community groups, scout troops, sport teams, businesses or other organizations that wish to help clean up their community. Groups are asked to report their clean-ups on the BCPS website and designate a school to receive credit.
Clean Green Collaboration
This is the fifth year for the challenge, which is a collaboration of Baltimore County Executive Don Mohler, Baltimore County Public Schools and the Education Foundation of Baltimore County. This year’s sponsors include BGE, Comcast and the Baltimore County Department of Environmental Protection and Sustainability.Tue, 18 Sep 2018 17:50:00 GMThttps://www.baltimorecountymd.gov/News/BaltimoreCountyNow/twelve-schools-win-the-team-bcps-clean-green-15-litter-challenge
Officials Advise Residents to Plan for Possible Flooding and Power Outages
Although the current track of Hurricane Florence appears to be headed far south of our area, Baltimore County Executive Don Mohler and his top public safety and public health team gathered at Bowleys Quarters Volunteer Fire Rescue and Marine this morning to advise residents to stay alert to possible changes and prepare in case of localized coastal and inland flooding or power outages from downed trees. The storm is expected to stall and produce heavy rains, which could lead to some inland and coastal flooding throughout the south and possibly in the Mid-Atlantic region.
“The Memorial Day weekend flooding in Catonsville, Ellicott City, Oella and Turner Station was an unwelcome reminder of our vulnerability, and that it doesn’t take a direct hit from a hurricane to ruin homes and businesses and cause prolonged power outages and possible loss of life,” Mohler said.
Mohler reminded residents to watch the County’s social media channels for storm-related updates. “Providing accurate, timely information to our citizens during an emergency is a top priority for us,” he said. “During storms and other emergencies, we push out frequent updates via Twitter @BaltCoemergency and on our Baltimore County Fire Department Facebook page.” Baltimore County emergency managers will continue to receive regular updates throughout this weather event and will provide updates on social media as needed.
“Living in eastern Baltimore County and along the waterfront myself, I am particularly grateful to all of our career and volunteer fire service, police officers and public works staff who stand ready to jump into action if necessary to protect people if this storm should cause problems,” said 6th District County Councilwoman Cathy Bevins.
Fire and Public Works Crews are Prepared and Ready to Respond
The Baltimore County Fire Department and the Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management continue monitoring the storm and preparing to respond as needed. These preparations include:
- Inspecting swiftwater and high-water rescue equipment; pumps and other apparatus.
- Reviewing staffing and operational plans.
- Preparing to open and staff the Emergency Operations Center, in case this becomes an emergency requiring a coordinated, multi-agency response.
- Contacting our mutual aid partners in case we need additional resources.
- Regular updates with National Weather Service regarding the forecast.
The Baltimore County Department of Public Works (DPW) has placed special emphasis this week on checking their equipment and clearing storm drain inlets to help reduce flooding potential. DPW warns that the saturated ground from recent rainy weather means that trees can be vulnerable to toppling from lighter winds than usual. County tree crews and contractors are ready to clear trees that may fall into roadways and the public right of way.
DPW asks residents to help by reporting any problems that may occur including blocked inlets and downed trees to the Bureau of Highways using the BaltCoGo mobile app. The app is offered free of charge to Android and iPhone users and may be downloaded from their respective app stores. Residents may also call the Bureau of Highways at 410-887-3560.
Flooded basement issues can be reported to 911, so they can be evaluated for fire risks on a case by case basis. The County asks homeowners take steps to prevent problems, or reduce their impact, by clearing downspouts and basement stairwells.
Preparation is Key for Residents
Every household should prepare for this and other possible weather emergencies, considering how thay will manage if the power goes out for an extended period. Steps to take now:
Thu, 13 Sep 2018 19:35:00 GMThttps://www.baltimorecountymd.gov/News/BaltimoreCountyNow/preparing-for-potential-localized-flooding-from-hurricane-florence
- Locate and purchase supplies. You need non-perishable food, a manual can opener, medications, supplies for infants and vulnerable adults, pet supplies, flashlights/batteries and a battery-powered radio.
- Buy or store extra water -- at least a gallon per person, per day, plus extra for pets.
- Fully charge all your electric devices. If power goes out, use them sparingly to make them last as long as possible.
- Get cash. ATMs will not work during a power outage.
- Secure boats and outdoor furniture.
- Plan where you will evacuate if you live in a flood-prone area and need to move to higher ground.
- Assist vulnerable family and neighbors with storm preparations. This is critical; many vulnerable people, including older people cannot prepare by themselves.
- Stay informed about the track of this storm. Follow weather forecasts and our social media posts, @BaltCoEmergency on Twitter and @BaltCoFire on Facebook.
October 3-4 Event Highlights Health and Well-Being
by Ethel Rasmussen, Baltimore County Department of Aging
Everyone is searching for the secrets to living longer and living well. Research has proven that one key tool to a better quality of life is empowering yourself with resources to enhance your living: mind-stimulating activities, fitness opportunities, community supports, engagement, and good nutrition. But where do you find these tools?
Baltimore County Department of Aging has simplified your search with a two-day event, the Power of Age Expo, October 3 and 4, 2018, at the Timonium Fairgrounds. In its 31st year, the Expo offers resources and enjoyment for older adults, caregivers, veterans, persons with disabilities and professionals.
Upon entry, the world of possibilities is opened to guests. Whether you are an active 80 year old looking for travel or health screenings, a caregiver caring in need of community resources to make your mother safer, a World War II veteran with questions about service benefits, or a professional looking to find tools to serve your clients better, Expo is the place to be.
The main stage will move and groove both days with amazing entertainment including Nashville recording star Josh Christina, Wednesday from 4-6 p.m., and the locally acclaimed band Appaloosa, Thursday from 1-4 p.m. (Dancing is great exercise!)
You can visit feature areas including:
- GBMC will offer games to discover their health services.
- Giant will educate on nutrition and medication management.
- Advanced Hearing will test your hearing and provide advice.
- Baltimore County Department of Aging Senior Centers will spotlight classes and programs.
- The Baltimore County Public Library will outline technology for library patrons.
- A Veterans Muster will display programs helping veterans.
- The Department of Health and Human Services will screen, educate and inform about their programs.
- AARP will host a pledge to vote exhibit.
There are so many things to do that it could take two days to appreciate the many activities and features at the show. Plan to visit the following areas:
- The Pamper Yourself Area, where Baltimore County Public School students will paint your nails at no cost.
- The Power of Age Art Show, showcasing 70 artworks from around the County, competing to be named “Best in Category.”
- The Flu and Pneumonia Shot Clinic to get a vaccine for prevention.
- The Health and Wellness Corner, where local university and college students will provide free education and health screenings.
- The Cuddle Shuttle, a pet-adoption van where you can adopt a fur-ever friend from Baltimore County Animal Services.
Expo guests will leave better prepared to live longer and live well, empowered by resources, entertainment and fun!
The Baltimore County Department of Aging’s Power of Age Expo is Wednesday, October 3, 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Thursday, October 4, 2018, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. at the Timonium Fairgrounds. Admission is a donation or two non-perishable food items.Wed, 12 Sep 2018 12:17:00 GMThttps://www.baltimorecountymd.gov/News/BaltimoreCountyNow/living-longer-living-well-through-the-power-of-age-expo