St. Mary's Co. Gov. News Briefs - Southern Maryland Headline News

St. Mary's Co. Gov. News Briefs

Commission on Aging Changes May Meeting Date

Due to the upcoming Memorial Day holiday, the Commission on Aging's May meeting will held on Monday, May 18 instead of May 25.

The meeting location will be held at the Northern Senior Activity Center, 29655 Charlotte Hall Road, Charlotte Hall, MD 20622 from 1 - 3 p.m.

St. Mary's County Honors Fallen DC Firefighter

The Commissioners of St. Mary's County joins in grieving the loss of Washington DC firefighter Lt. Kevin McRae. The 24 year veteran died yesterday after collapsing at the scene of a two-alarm blaze at a downtown Washington DC high-rise.

Lt. McRae, a resident of Waldorf, was well known to members of the Hollywood Volunteer Fire Department. He went through professional development and provided training assistance to a number of the volunteers at the department. He had just returned to his job in DC after assisting firefighters in Baltimore in the wake of protests there.

"Our hearts are saddened by the tragic loss of Lt. McRae," said Commissioner Randy Guy. "He played an invaluable role in the development of a number of our volunteer firefighters here in St. Mary's County and his presence will be missed. As such I have ordered that the St. Mary's County flag be flown at half-staff until next Thursday in his memory."

"This is a very tough loss for the volunteer firefighter community," said Commissioner John O'Connor (3rd District.) "My sincere condolences go out to his family as well as his fellow firefighters in DC as well as here in St. Mary's County. He will be sorely missed."

State to Sponsor Summer Pesticide Container Collection and Recycling Program

The Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) is sponsoring its summer collection program for empty plastic pesticide containers according to specific guidelines. MDA will provide collection sites throughout the State. The nearest location to St. Mary's County which accepts out-of-county pesticide containers will be the Frederick County Landfill, 9031 Reich's Ford Road, Frederick, MD 21704 on June 23, July 21, August 25 and September 22, 2015 between the hours of 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.

Collected containers will be chipped and transported to an approved recycling facility for processing. MDA inspectors will supervise the collection to ensure only triple rinsed, clean, plastic pesticide containers are collected. Information on the inspection checklist for empty pesticide containers and the recycling program itself can be obtained at or by calling 1-410-841-5710.

For more information about recycling in St. Mary's County, please contact the Department of Public Works and Transportation, Recycling Program at (301) 863-8400, or on the web at

Celebrate Heritage Day at St. Clement's Island State Park

The Museum Division of St. Mary's County Department of Recreation and Parks presents St. Clement's Island Heritage Day on Saturday, June 13, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Everyone is invited to attend this free event which affords an opportunity to visit the St. Clement's Island Museum for free as well as complimentary boat rides to St. Clement's Island State Park. Visitors can enjoy a day of history, fun activities as well as interesting exhibitor and scenic waterside vistas. The last boat ride to the island departs the museum pier at 2 p.m. and the last boat returns to the mainland at 3 p.m.

Discover St. Clement's Island State Park and its history as the site of Maryland's first colonial landing in 1634. Kids can enjoy free watermelon and playing heritage games. Christina Allen of Corn Crib Studios will conduct cotton spinning demonstrations. Patuxent Tidewater Land Trust Executive Director Sharon Saez will talk about the trust's effort to preserve open spaces in the Patuxent River region. The Bay-Wise volunteers of the St. Mary's County Master Gardeners will explain gardening techniques which will help improve the water quality of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Kerry Wixted of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Wildlife and Heritage Service will discuss the benefits of local wildlife. Historic St. Mary's City will present the Native American Woodland Indians with a hands-on exhibit. Re-enactors Mike and Virginia Barbour will portray colonial land owner Dr. Thomas Gerard and his daughter Elizabeth.

Visitors can bring a picnic lunch to enjoy on the island. The reconstructed Blackistone Lighthouse will be open and available for tours. Be sure to wear comfortable walking shoes, sun screen, and bring your camera, binoculars and plenty of water.

In addition, the St. Clement's Island Museum will be open with free admission from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The crab claw museum store will also be open featuring an array of unique gifts, souvenirs, home décor, clothing, jewelry, books and more.

Located on the museum grounds will be the St. Mary's County Master Gardeners with abundant information about your gardens and how to raise and maintain Maryland official state flower, the Black-eyed Susan.

The St. Clement's Island Museum is located at 38370 Point Breeze Rd. in Colton's Point, MD. The museum and grounds are handicap accessible however the water taxi and island are not. For more information please call the St. Mary's County Museum Division at 301-769-2222 or visit

In the event of rain or high wind boat service will be cancelled. Exhibitors and elements of the program will be moved inside the museum.

Commissioners Highlight Care Provided by Nursing Home Providers

Skilled and compassionate care provided for the aging across St. Mary's County by not-for-profit facilities was the focus of a ceremony held by the Commissioners of St. Mary's County during their weekly business meeting.

The care and service provided renders life more meaningful, dignified, and joyful for the elderly. As such the commissioners have declared the week of May 10 - 16 as National Nursing Home Week.

"Here in St. Mary's County we recognize the quality, service, and dedication of those who provide care for the elderly through such facilities and services," said Commissioner Tom Jarboe (1st District).

Commissioners made special mention of the St. Mary's Nursing Center, a not-for-profit organization serving the elderly in the County. The facility is recognizing the theme, "Bring on the Fiesta" during the week. They urge all citizens to honor and celebrate this very special week.

With Boating Season Approaching Commissioners Hold Ceremony to Highlight Boating Safety

With statistics indicating an average of 700 people die each year in boating related accidents nationwide, and nearly 70% of those deaths are attributed to drowning, the Commissioners of St. Mary's County took time to send an important message regarding boating safety by proclaiming the week of May 16 - 26 as National Safe Boasting Week.

Boating safety experts say the vast majority of boating accidents are caused by human error or poor judgment and not the boat or any of its equipment or environmental factors.

"80% of boaters who lose their lives by drowning each year would be alive today had they worn their life jackets," said Commissioner Mike Hewitt (2nd District.) "Modern life jackets are more comfortable, more attractive, and more wearable than styles of years past and deserve a fresh look by today's boating public."

Commissioners recognized the Patuxent River Sail and Power Squadron for providing boating education to St. Mary's County and Southern Maryland citizens for 60 years. National Safe Boating Week begins the year-round effort to promote safe boating. The proclamation urges all citizens who boat to "Wear It" and practice safe boating habits while out on the waterways.

Commissioners Honor Emergency Services Workers

24 hours a day, 365 days a year St. Mary's County citizens rely on Emergency Medical Services volunteers and professionals for critical care in their homes, on the county's roads, in the hospital or wherever a need may exist. It's this dedication to service that the Commissioners of St. Mary's County proclaimed the week of May 17 - 23 Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Week.

EMS week honors thousands of trained and certified volunteer and career first responders, emergency medical technicians, cardiac rescue technicians, paramedics, medevac pilots, communications specialists, and emergency department and trauma center personnel. EMS providers spend long hours to further their medical education, train themselves on the latest life-saving techniques and maintain vital emergency equipment.

"A key to the success of the EMS system is the impressive combination of courage, expertise, dedication, and compassion which distinguishes the performance of its personnel," said Commissioner John O'Connor (3rd District). "The aid they administer often requires split second decisions, essential to preventing disability or death among their fellow citizens."

The proclamation also highlights the efforts EMS personnel make in saving lives and minimizing injuries and it urges all citizens to observe the week with respect and appreciation for those serving with EMS.

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