Kittleman Announces $3.8M in Flood Mitigation Projects for Ellicott City
Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman has announced $3.8 million in flood remediation projects aimed at mitigating future flooding issues in Ellicott City’s Main Street, West End and Valley Mede communities. The six projects range from retaining wall reconstruction and stream bank stabilization to targeted watershed studies.
The projects also include a $1.7 million Natural Resources Conservation Services (NRCS) grant to repair walls damaged by the July 30 flash flood that dropped six inches of rain on the Ellicott City area in less than two hours. Several of the projects could begin by the end of the 2016 calendar year and, weather permitting, could be completed by late spring or early summer of 2017.
The NRCS grant will be used to reconstruct a retaining wall between parking lots E and F, a stream wall behind Precious Gifts (near Old Columbia Pike) and a stream wall at the Ellicott Mills Brewing Co., near Court Avenue. This work is scheduled to be completed by next summer. Also in the Main Street Ellicott City area and in the West End, projects will include clearing debris from the Hudson Stream channel and rebuilding a retaining wall that collapsed during the flood near 8611 Main Street.
In Valley Mede, the county will begin a project in 2017 to stabilize a stream bank along Longview Drive that eroded significantly during the July 30 storm. That project is expected to be completed in late 2017 or early 2018. The county also will conduct a joint study with the State Highway Administration to evaluate existing culverts along Route 40, as well as within the Valley Mede community, and then make necessary culvert improvements.
“These projects are tangible steps we’re taking to make things better in locations more susceptible to flooding,” Kittleman said. “While studies such as the hydrologic and hydraulic assessment will be important in helping us develop long-term mitigation plans, we already have identified some areas where we can take steps quickly. As the recovery planning process gets underway, it is important to use the funds available to work on these high-impact projects.”
Schuh Appoints Mussog CEO of AAEDC
County Executive Steve Schuh has appointed Controller Julie Mussog as CEO of Anne Arundel Economic Development Corp. (AAEDC). Mussog’s appointment is effective Nov. 1. Laureen Toney will serve as acting controller until a permanent appointment is made.
“After a comprehensive national search, we realized Julie was a perfect person to help harness the economic potential of our county,” said Schuh. “Her knowledge and expertise in tax incremental financing, coupled with her economic development experience in the private sector, will help ensure we aggressively pursue every opportunity to attract businesses to our county.”
Mussog was appointed controller by County Executive Laura Neuman in 2013 and managed the Office of Finance, which bills and collects most of Anne Arundel County’s revenues, oversees the expenditure of funds in accordance with approved operating and capital budgets, invests funds and accounts for all revenues and expenditures; prior to her appointment as controller, she held the position of special assistant to the county executive for community affairs. Mussog also previously served as chief of staff for Delegate Herbert McMillan.
Mussog started her career at the Detroit office of PricewaterhouseCoopers and worked for an early stage venture-funded entity, as well as Dell, NVR and PulteGroup. She is a CPA and has an MBA from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.
Ball, Weinstein to File Amendment to Extend Tax Credit Boundaries
Howard County Council Chairperson Calvin Ball and Vice Chairperson Jon Weinstein announced plans to file an amendment to Council Bill 66-2016, which would extend the boundaries for the Ellicott City Strong Tax Credit for residential property owners from Ellicott City to all of Howard County.
The proposed tax credit would be granted in an amount of 100% of the cost to repair, rehabilitate, restore or redevelop the property, up to the full amount of the county property tax. A qualified applicant may receive the credit for tax years 2017 and 2018. The legislation states that a property owner would submit an application to the Department of Finance to receive the Ellicott City Strong Tax Credit, and this would be granted in taxable years beginning after June 30, 2016, and ending before July 1, 2018.
“This amendment addresses feedback we have heard by people supporting the legislation. The bill, if passed with the amendment, will allow all residential properties in the county that were impacted by the historic storm to take advantage of this financial benefit to aid their road to recovery,” said Weinstein.
Testimony on the CB 66-2016 legislation will be accepted at the regularly scheduled public hearing on Oct. 17. To sign up to testify, visit https://apps.howardcountymd.gov/otestimony. If you would like to submit your testimony electronically, email email@example.com.
Howard County Sheriff Resigns; Interim Sherriff Named
Howard County Sheriff James Fitzgerald’s last day in office was Saturday, Oct. 15. The decision follows the release of a county Office of Human Rights report detailing allegations of racism and discrimination leveled against the sheriff by personnel in his organization. The investigation was set in motion by a complaint from former Lt. Charles Gable, who said he resigned his own commission to escape a hostile work environment that existed under the sheriff.
Fitzgerald’s second-in-command, Maj. George Voll, retired earlier this month; although he said he was not aware of the specific details of a settlement the sheriff signed, Kittleman said Gable would be reinstated and receive more than $58,000 in back pay.
Lt. Don Knott will run the department until Fitzgerald’s successor is named. Kittleman added that individuals interested in serving as sheriff for the remainder of the current elected term could apply at www.govappoints.md.gov.
TelePacific Turns to Ciena for Network Expansion
To support its recent expansion as a nationwide managed services provider, TelePacific Communications has deployed Hanover-based Ciena’s programmable 8700 Packetwave Platform, which provides a scalable and cost-effective solution to support 100GbE services and beyond. This network upgrade helps enable TelePacific to provide unified communications, managed information technology, connectivity, cloud and continuity services to customers anywhere in the country.
TelePacific can now offer a variety of high-speed packet services nationwide with Ciena’s Carrier Ethernet 2.0 certified 8700 platform. Another key benefit of the 8700 is that it enables TelePacific to provide reliable, high-bandwidth connectivity and support a variety of wavelengths, up to 100G, that can be turned up as demand dictates.
TelePacific is also utilizing Ciena’s 8700 as part of standards testing performed at the University of New Hampshire Interoperability Lab. This work supports the advancement of industry standards with the Metro Ethernet Forum by facilitating the creation of interoperable services between operators across the industry.
“With Ciena’s 8700 Packetwave as its core network packet switch, TelePacific Communications has reduced their dependency on routers to reliably offer 10G to 100G grooming and switching of MEF CE2.0-certified services to their customers,” said Jason Phipps, vice president and general manager, North America, for Ciena.
Drug Take Back Day, Saturday, Oct. 22
HC DrugFree is holding the next Drug Take Back Day, scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 22 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Wilde Lake Village Center.
Drug Take Back Day allows citizens to dispose of unwanted or expired prescription and over-the-counter medications safely and anonymously. Studies show that two-thirds of teens who abuse prescription drugs are getting them from cabinets in the home. This program offers the community an environmentally-safe option to reduce the abuse and misuse of medication.
Prescriptions, both controlled and non-controlled, will be accepted. Needles, syringes and EpiPens will be accepted at the HC DrugFree site at Wilde Lake Village Cente, 5305 Village Center Drive, Columbia 21044 at the drive-through, drop-off location.
For more information, visit www.hcdrugfree.org, call 443-325-0040 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Total Wine Relocating, Expanding
Total Wine (formerly Corridor Wine & Spirits), of Laurel, will open in a new location in the Corridor Marketplace & Shopping Center on Thursday, Oct. 20. Occupying more than 40,000 square feet, the new leased space is double the size of Total Wine’s previous location in the same center.
New store features include two tasting bars – one in the wine department, one in the beer department – as well as an expanded spirits section, an expanded gourmet fare and accessories section, and a 28-foot walk-in cigar humidor. In addition, a 68-seat classroom that offers space for educating customers about wine, spirits and beer can also be booked for private parties and community and business events.
Heritage Toyota Catonsville Supporting Ellicott City Businesses, Residents
Heritage Toyota Catonsville, a division of Heritage Automotive, and the Ellicott City Partnership have joined together to provide financial support to residents, property owners, business owners and employees who lost their vehicles in the July 30 flood. On The Road, a $50,000 fund from Heritage Toyota Catonsville, is available to those in need of financial help to replace their vehicles that were destroyed this past summer. Grant applications and details for financial assistance can be accessed at www.heritageautogrant.com, and the deadline for applying is Wednesday, Oct. 28.
“The road to a full recovery is very much dependent upon access to transportation as business owners and residents need to replace their vehicles lost in the flood so they can get back to work,” said Steven Fader, CEO of MileOne Automotive Group, the parent company of Heritage Automotive. “We are pleased to be part of the Howard County relief effort in a way that helps those vehicle owners get back on the road.”
CF of Howard County to Recognize Philanthropists at Annual Dinner
The Community Foundation of Howard County (CFHoCo) will recognize Howard County philanthropists at its annual dinner, A Celebration of Philanthropy, on Thursday, Nov. 10, from 6 to 9 p.m., at Turf Valley in Ellicott City.
The CFHoCo will present the fifth annual Philanthropist of the Year awards to Dr. Fred Lewis, Sr., and Mary Agnes Lewis and to Security Development Corp. Residents of Howard County since 1954, they have supported the local faith community, local arts and historic preservation in the county as well as institutions including Howard County General Hospital, Howard Community College and St. Louis Parish in Clarksville, among other major organizations in the county.
Fred Lewis established a veterinary practice when he arrived in Howard County and has been active in central Maryland’s veterinary community ever since. Mary Agnes Lewis is a teacher who helped establish Howard County’s first kindergarten program and has coordinated St. Louis Parish’s meal preparation and donation program for 35 years.
From MarylandReporter.com …
Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman opposes campaign financing question on county ballot: Kittleman told MarylandReporter.com he opposes the public campaign financing charter amendment on county ballots this year because it would force him to use taxpayer dollars to fund candidates. “There’s no question I support public financing of local campaigns,” Kittleman said – but only if it comes from voluntary contributions, not tax dollars. Read more: http://marylandreporter.com/2016/10/13/howard-exec-kittleman-opposes-campaign-financing-question-on-county-ballot
Democratic incumbents face challengers in Columbia forum: The three incumbent Democratic congressmen who represent Howard County showed up at a forum Saturday to face their opponents. Missing was one challenger, Republican Del. Pat McDonough, who had loudly complained that Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger refused to debate him. Read more: http://marylandreporter.com/2016/10/13/democratic-incumbents-face-challengers-in-columbia-forum
MarylandReporter.com is a news site for government and politics in Maryland that is published and edited by Len Lazarick. For more information or to sign up for the daily e-news, visit www.marylandreporter.com .