Charles Co. Gov. News Briefs - Southern Maryland Headline News

Charles Co. Gov. News Briefs

Commissioners Proclaim Nov. 28 as Small Business Saturday

On Tuesday, Nov. 17, the Commissioners proclaimed Saturday, Nov. 28 as Small Business Saturday. Small businesses are significant contributors to our economy and community. Small businesses employ more than 55 percent of the working population in the United States and nearly 1.1 million workers in Maryland.

Small businesses are critical to the overall economic health of our community by creating jobs, generating tax revenue, reinvesting money earned in the local community, and providing local alternatives to consumers. The Commissioners urge residents to support small businesses and merchants on Small Business Saturday and throughout the year.

Commissioners Proclaim 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence

On Tuesday, Nov. 17, the Commissioners proclaimed Wednesday, Nov. 25 to Thursday, Dec. 10 as “16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence” in Charles County. The global 16 Days of Activism campaign is dedicated to advocacy towards ending local and international gender-based violence.

Charles County is fortunate to have its local Zonta Club join nearly 5,000 other 16 Days of Activism participating organizations worldwide. The Commissioners encourage residents to participate in planned campaign activities. For additional information about the Charles County Zonta Club’s participation, visit their website at

Commissioners Present Citation to Mary Jane Short

On Tuesday, Nov. 17, the Charles County Commissioners presented a citation to Mary Jane Short for more than 24 years of dedicated service to the Charles County Property Tax Assessment Appeals Board. The Property Tax Assessment Appeal Board conducts hearings on property tax assessments, and affirms the tax assessment or reduces the tax assessment based on those findings. The Commissioners honor Short’s devotion and commitment to the residents of Charles County.

Commissioners Proclaim November as Indian Heritage Month

The Charles County Commissioners proclaimed November 2015 as American Indian Heritage Month in Charles County. American Indian Heritage Month began as a day of recognition of American Indians in 1915, and is now an annual recognition, marked with educational and celebratory activities throughout the United States.

The indigenous people of North America —the First Americans — have woven rich and diverse threads into the tapestry of our Nation's heritage.

The Piscataway Indians, indigenous to southern Maryland, continue to reside and thrive in areas where first contact was made with the English colonists in the early 1600s. The Piscataway were major contributors in agriculture, housing, fishing, and hunting in the region, which was invaluable to the first Europeans in America, and helped to secure their establishment in the area. Charles County values our tribal communities, and supports their voice in our local, state, and national policy debates.

County Tourism Office Receives State Award for Lincoln 150 Event

The Charles County Office of Tourism received the 2015 Maryland Office of Tourism Development Award in the “Cultural Heritage Tourism” category for the Lincoln 150 Commemoration: On the Trail of the Assassin event. The Cultural Heritage Tourism award recognizes outstanding investments and contributions in stewardship and/or development of Maryland's cultural heritage product and engagement in regional and statewide tourism initiatives.

“It is an honor for the Charles County Office of Tourism to accept this award for the Lincoln 150 Commemoration weekend. Through our efforts to facilitate unique tourist attractions, we are confident that tourists will come to Charles County to experience our rich history,” Chief of Tourism and Special Events Tim Morgan said.

The Charles County Government Office of Tourism worked with an array of government agencies, tourism industry partners and the media to promote the Lincoln 150 Commemoration Weekend events that took place April 17-19, 2015. The three-month marketing campaign targeted the cultural heritage tourist and featured anchor events held at the Dr. Samuel A. Mudd House in Waldorf and the recently acquired Rich Hill Farm in Bel Alton. The campaign encompassed print, billboards, social media, cable, television interviews, and a landing webpage with hotel discounts. The campaign dovetailed with the Maryland Office of Tourism's special interest brochure, “John Wilkes Booth Escape of an Assassin Trail.” The weekend commemorated the 150th anniversary of former President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination.

The Maryland Office of Tourism Development (OTD) – an agency of the Maryland Department of Commerce – and the Maryland Tourism Development Board (MTDB) presented their 2015 Maryland Tourism Awards at the 35th annual Maryland Tourism and Travel Summit in Ellicott City, Maryland on Thursday, Oct. 29. The awards recognize excellence and major contributions in cultural heritage tourism, sports travel, economic impact, and elevating Maryland's image as a tourism destination.

For more information about the Charles County Government Office of Tourism, visit

Charles County Public Library Appoints Salazar as New Director

The Charles County Library Board of Trustees announces the appointment of Janet Salazar as the permanent Charles County Public Library director. In her new role, Salazar is responsible for leading and inspiring library staff, fostering teamwork, advocating for the library, building partnerships, and participating in community events. Her immediate priorities include developing a strategic plan and preparing the fiscal year 2017 budget.

Commissioner Amanda M. Stewart, M.Ed. (District 3), who serves as the ex-officio member on the Charles County Library County of Trustees, said, “The Charles County Public Library is a fundamental resource in our community, fostering education and imagination. I congratulate Janet on her new role, and look forward to seeing her successes as she promotes our libraries.”

The Charles County Public Library has four branches: La Plata, P.D. Brown Memorial, Potomac, and Waldorf West. The library offers programs for all ages. In 2015, the library offered an additional 750 programs for the community, totaling 2,300 classes and programs. Classes and program topics range from career development to children’s story time to technology.

President of the Board of Trustees Claudia Bellony-Atanga said, “The board looks forward to working with Janet in building partnerships and making the library system one of the best in the state. She definitely has been an asset and we are lucky to have her.”

“I am very excited to take on the leadership role for the Charles County Public Library at such a dynamic time for libraries everywhere. Libraries transform their communities. We open doors to knowledge, awareness, and creativity for our community,” Charles County Public Library Director Janet Salazar.

For more information about Charles County Public Library, visit

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