City/county Digest

CITY/COUNTY DIGEST

March 15, 2004

In Baltimore County

County police warn of criminals posing as utility workers

TOWSON - County police are warning residents, especially the elderly, to beware of criminals posing as utility workers or contractors who distract them while another criminal slips inside the house to steal valuables.

Police, saying they have recently received several reports of such crimes, warned residents not to leave their houses to talk with strangers at their doors or allow strangers into their homes, even if they are claiming to be in trouble or say they are a friend of a friend or neighbor. Police also noted that utilities call ahead before they send workers or technicians.

Anyone worried about a suspicious stranger should immediately call 911 with a description of the person, police said.

State grants available for east-side marinas

ESSEX - More than $95,000 in grants is available to marinas in the Middle River/Browns Creek and Back River watersheds under the state Department of Natural Resources' Clean Marina Initiative, the department announced.

The grants will be used to pay for pollution prevention equipment such as vacuum sanders that collect debris as it is removed from a hull, oil and antifreeze recycling stations, riparian buffer plantings to minimize storm runoff and oil-spill response kits.

Under the "cost-share" grants, the Department of Natural Resources pays 75 percent of the cost of such items and the marina pays the rest. The application deadline is March 23. Information: 410-260-8773 or www. dnr.maryland.gov/boating/clean marina.

Booklet offers information on nonprofit volunteering

TOWSON - A new publication, "Find Your Opportunity, Volunteer in Our Community," provides information on volunteer positions with nonprofit organizations in all areas of Baltimore County.

The 80-page booklet is available in county public library branches or by calling Baltimore County Volunteers at 410-887- 2715.

In Baltimore City

Pratt library wins grant to establish endowment

The Enoch Pratt Free Library has received $250,000 from the Middendorf Foundation of Maryland to help endow the library's Maryland Department.

The Maryland Department provides programs for history students, assists people seeking information about family origins and helps to educate librarians and researchers. The grant is part of the library's effort to establish a $1.5 million endowment for the department, library officials said.

The endowment fund will enable the department to develop more programs, digitize collections, provide on-line access to files and microfilm state newspapers.

Town hall meeting set to kick off Green Week

A free session on ways to make homes and neighborhoods more environmentally friendly will kick off Baltimore Green Week 2004 a week from today.

City officials, regional experts and others will discuss energy efficiency, tax incentives, mass transit and rowhouse renovations at a "green town hall meeting" at 5:30 p.m. March 22 at 3601 O'Donnell St. in Brewer's Hill. The meeting is expected to last three hours.

A list of the week's activities, which are being organized by architects and engineers, can be found at www.baltimoregreen week.org.

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