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

St. Mary's Co. Gov. News Briefs

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Ethics Commission Meeting Location Change

The Ethics Commission will meet on Monday, September 12, 2016 at 6 p.m. in the County Attorney's Conference Room, located on the 2nd floor of the Chesapeake Building at 41770 Baldridge Street, Leonardtown MD 20650.

Metcom Meeting Cancellation Notice

The Metropolitan Commission Special Meeting, scheduled for Wednesday, August 31, 2016 at 3:00 p.m., was cancelled.

The next Meeting of the Metropolitan Commission is scheduled for Thursday, September 15, 2016 at 3:00 p.m.

Portable Basketball Hoops Should Be Removed from Roadways

The Department of Public Works and Transportation reminds residents portable basketball hoops should be removed from the public roadways. The hoops are similar to portable street-hockey nets, skateboard ramps, and other paraphernalia which are sometimes placed within the right-of-way in residential neighborhoods.

When the department receives complaint, they are then evaluated to determine whether the encroachment on the public right-of-way constitutes a danger to public safety; hazards to vehicle or pedestrian traffic; obstructions to the free passage of school buses, mail deliveries, street sweeping, refuse collection equipment or snow plows; obstructions to sight distance objects that represent an inconvenience to others should be removed immediately. An example of an inconvenience to others would be where a portable basketball hoop blocks another person's driveway or sidewalk accessible path.

If the basketball hoop is not removed from the right-of-way by the property owner within thirty (30) days of being notified by the County, it will be picked up and held at the County Highways Maintenance Facility for 30 days and may be claimed by the owner during that time. At the end of the 30 day period, if unclaimed by the property owner (whom may be responsible for any costs incurred), the basketball hoop(s) will be discarded.

The County Highway Maintenance Facility is located at 44829 St. Andrews Church Road, California, Maryland 20169.

National Weather Service's SKYWARN Winter Storm Training to be Offered

The St. Mary's County Department of Emergency Services & Technology will host SKYWARN—Winter Strom training session on November 7, 2016 from 6—9 p.m. inside the Chesapeake Building on the Governmental Center Campus in Leonardtown. The address is 41770 Baldridge Street, Leonardtown, MD 20650.

The effects of severe weather are felt every year by many Americans. To obtain critical weather information, NOAA's National Weather Service (NWS), established SKYWARN with partner organizations. SKYWARN is a volunteer program which trains citizens to become severe weather spotters. These volunteers help keep their local communities safe by providing timely and accurate reports of severe weather to the National Weather Service.

Training in the Winter Storm class is a good overview of winter weather threats in our area. It is intended for everyone. Basics I is a prerequisite for this class. The Winter Storm training:

• Winter Hazards in this Region

• Winter Normals and Extremes

• Winter Storm Ingredients

• NWS Forecasts and Products

• Role of SkyWarn and Reporting

• Winter Preparation and Safety

Registering for a SKYWARN® Class

Those interested are required to pre-register for all classes. This is necessary to control class size and provide the proper amount of handouts. Classes have a limited amount of space. If you register for a class and cannot make it, please notify us so we can make your spot available to someone else. All training classes and SKYWARN® membership are free.

To register for this SKYWARN Winter Training go to

For more information, please call 301-475-4200 Ext. 2124.

Travel Precautions Extended to Prevent Zika Virus Transmission

Recently, cases of Zika virus have been reported in countries of Southeast Asia, including Singapore. This expands the areas of the world where local mosquitos may be transmitting Zika. The list of areas with active Zika virus transmission is growing frequently. Anyone planning travel should check the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website at for the latest updates on areas with local Zika transmission.

Women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant in the near future should consider postponing travel to areas with known Zika virus transmission. Any pregnant woman who has traveled to an area with Zika virus, or who has had sexual exposure to someone that has traveled, should talk to their healthcare provider about getting tested for Zika.

Persons who have traveled to areas with locally transmitted Zika virus should avoid anal, vaginal, or oral sexual activities with pregnant women or be sure to use condoms properly each time they have sex. Pregnant women and their partners should follow steps to prevent mosquito bites by using an EPA-registered insect repellent, wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants, and taking steps to control mosquitoes inside and outside of their living areas.

Currently, three travel-related cases of Zika have been laboratory-confirmed in the southern Maryland region. There may be additional probable cases that are not laboratory-confirmed. No locally acquired mosquito-borne transmissions of Zika have been identified in Maryland at this time.

For more information about preventing Zika virus disease, please visit or For mosquito source reduction tips, please visit the St. Mary's County Health Department's website at

Citizens Urged to Review Emergency Plans During Maryland Preparedness Month

The Department of Emergency Services & Technology reminds citizens that September is a good time to review preparedness information for severe weather and other emergencies throughout the year. September is National Preparedness and Maryland Preparedness Month. Government agencies, businesses, community groups, schools and families are participating in events to help promote disaster preparedness.

"The flooding in Ellicott City in late July should be a reminder to all of us that disasters can strike anytime," said Russ Strickland, Executive Director of Maryland Emergency Management Agency. "With three storms and depressions swirling around the Atlantic over the past week, we need to remember that this is the most likely time of the year for a hurricane to hit our area. Don't wait until a disaster is on your doorstep to start preparing."

Making preparations when threats are not imminent can make communities more resilient. Hazards common to Maryland include flooding, high wind, severe thunderstorms and winter storms.

Several online sources provide good emergency preparedness information for these and additional threats:

• St. Mary's County Department of Emergency Services & Technology:

• Maryland Emergency Management Agency:

• Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA):

• National Weather Service:

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