Community Notes

January 11, 2008

Transportation panel plans `listening sessions'

The Howard County Public Transportation Board will hold the first of several "listening sessions" to hear concerns, comments and recommendations for the future of Howard Transit, the county's local bus service.

The first session will be held at 7 p.m. Jan. 22 in the Tyson Room of the George Howard Building, 3430 Court House Drive, Ellicott City.

The sessions will begin a six-month to nine-month process to prepare a transit development plan for the next five years. The plan will examine the existing route structure, frequency of service, on-time performance, condition of the vehicles, customer service and other factors and will evaluate future demand based on projected residential and employment growth.

Ridership on Howard Transit is expected to exceed 900,000 trips during the current fiscal year.

To request a sign-language interpreter for the meeting: 410-313-6401 (TDD). Requests should be made at least three days in advance. Requests for transportation should be made at least three days in advance: 410-313-1921.

Deadline for registration in Feb. primary is Jan. 22

Deadlines are approaching for the 2008 presidential primary election. The deadline to register to vote and the deadline for certain voters to request a change in polling place is 9 p.m. Jan. 22.

To vote in the primary, residents who are eligible but not registered (including 17-year-olds who will be 18 by Nov. 4) must complete a voter registration application and mail or hand-deliver it to the Board of Elections.

A hand-delivered application must be received by the Board of Elections by 9 p.m. Jan. 22; a mailed application must be postmarked by Jan. 22. Registered voters who have moved since the last election must provide their current address to the local board by the deadline.

To request a voter registration application: 800-222-VOTE.

An elderly or disabled voter who is unable to reach the assigned polling place must request reassignment by 9 p.m. Jan. 22. The form to request reassignment is available at www.elect ions.state.md.us (type "polling place reassignment" in the search field).

`Supergirl Dilemma' to be focus Sunday

The Women's Giving Circle of Howard County will sponsor a free presentation for mothers, daughters and anyone interested in the future of young women from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at Hawthorn Center in Hickory Ridge village, Columbia.

Gender equity specialist Phyllis Lerner will discuss "The Supergirl Dilemma: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly."

Lerner is a founding member of Girls Inc. in the Washington metropolitan area, a nonprofit youth organization that tries to inspire girls to lead successful, independent and fulfilling lives.

The organization commissioned a nationwide survey that provides insight into girls' lives and identifies a "supergirl phenomenon," a set of societal expectations for girls that includes coping with stereotypes and concerns uniquely confronting girls.

Admission is free. Reservations are not required.

Information: 410-730-7327. For a copy of the survey: www.girlsinc.org.

17 to receive certification as master gardeners

Seventeen Howard County master gardeners will receive certification in a recognition event to be held from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday at the Miller branch library in Ellicott City.

Receiving certification are Bettye Ames, Lisa Baum, James Blank, Carmen Carpenter, Joyce Halasz, Donna Hennessy, Mary Catherine Herlein, Gerald Kissel, Cathy Latham, John Law, Callie Peddicord, Carolyn Rimes, Dana Rogers, Anne Roy, Linda Walton, Laura Wieder and former County Councilman Paul Farragut.

Also, 28 certified master gardeners will be recognized for their three, five and 10 years of service: Joan Bielski, Gaye Holcomb, Suzette Holiday, Irene MacDonald, Mike McGaha, Deborah Patton, Sherry Young, Ethelyn Bishop, Debra Brooks-Jarboe, Barbara Dawson, Peter Ebbe, Tom Frederick, Tom Gardner, Victoria Goeller, Renee Hawkins, Barbara Nibali, Robert Orazi, Kathy Quick, Betty Rice, Eva Roswell, Anne Towne, Denise Garman, Cheryl Gwynn-Haymes, Maria Gisela Hoffman, Virginia Pausch, Jo Ann Russo, Barbara White and Michelle Wright.

Special recognition will be given to Jon Traunfeld, state master-gardener coordinator and director of the Maryland Cooperative Extension Home and Garden Information Center, for his leadership of the state program, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary.

Nick T. Place, associate dean of the University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and associate director of the Maryland Cooperative Extension, will participate in the ceremonies.

The mission of master gardeners is to educate residents about horticultural practices to build healthy gardens, landscapes and communities.

Arts celebration to be held April 26

The Howard County Arts Council has announced its 11th Celebration of the Arts in Howard County, which will be held from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. April 26 at Jim Rouse Theatre for the Performing Arts in Columbia.

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