Around The Region

AROUND THE REGION

March 13, 2009

Howard Health Dept. may lay off 15 workers

Howard County's Health Department has begun layoffs that may total 15 workers by June 30, as officials say slumping income tax and real estate revenues push a projected county budget shortfall in the current fiscal year toward $10 million. The county health officer, Dr. Peter L. Beilenson, said he has laid off five workers, including two who are part-time. The Health Department is a state entity that operates in the county. Another eight to 10 may lose their jobs by the end of the fiscal year, primarily because of lower state revenues, he said. County Executive Ken Ulman said the latest state figures mean that county revenues may fall up to $10 million short of projections - twice the figure forecast one month ago. Ulman said the county has funds set aside to cover the loss. In cost reductions this fiscal year, Ulman cut back on take-home vehicles and closed the county's print shop and TV studio, eliminating 15 jobs. Several of the workers transferred into other county jobs.

Larry Carson

Stabbing of boy, 17, ruled self-defense

The fatal Jan. 11 stabbing of a 17-year-old boy near City College has been ruled justified by self-defense, and no charges will be placed against the unnamed accused, authorities said yesterday. A letter of declination from the city state's attorney's office to the city Police Department absolved the accused of charges in the death of Shawn Green of the 1800 block of E. 31st St. After an investigation by homicide detectives and the state's attorney's office, it was determined that after Green attacked another person at The Alameda and East 32nd St. in the Coldstream Homestead Montebello neighborhood about 7:30 p.m., the accused stabbed Green in the chest in self-defense. Police said Green died about three hours later at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Police originally ruled Green's death a homicide, but it has been removed from this year's count. As of yesterday, there were 41 homicides in the city since Jan. 1, compared with 36 the same time last year, police said.

Richard Irwin

Teen boy shot, in good condition

A teenage boy was shot last night on a street in the Carrollton Ridge neighborhood in Southwest Baltimore and was reported in good condition at a hospital, police said. No arrest had been made. Southwestern District police responding to a 911 call of a shooting in the 2100 block of Wilkens Ave. near South Smallwood Street about 9:15 p.m. found the victim, believed to be 14, bleeding from at least one bullet wound to the left armpit. The youth was taken by a city Fire Department ambulance to the Johns Hopkins Children's Center. Police were attempting to locate the crime scene and detained several people who might have witnessed the shooting. The crew of a city police helicopter flew over the area and used its high-intensity search light in an effort to spot any suspects and its heat-seeking device to look for a weapon that might have been discarded by the assailant. The district's detective unit is investigating the shooting.

Richard Irwin

Senior groups set to meet

The Baltimore County Association of Senior Citizens' Organizations will hold a senior educational forum from 9:30 a.m. to noon today at Towson United Methodist Church, Dulaney Valley Road and Hampton Lane. Speakers will address the needs and issues affecting senior citizens and how to advocate for them. Exhibits and giveaways will be available. Information: 410-484-6866.

Meetings to outline BRAC-tied road work

The State Highway Administration will hold public meetings to outline plans for intersection improvements near three federal facilities as part of its effort to accommodate an influx of workers moving to Maryland because of a realignment of U.S. military bases. The process, known as Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC), is expected to bring tens of thousands of new jobs to the state, with most centered around Aberdeen Proving Ground, Fort Meade and the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda. The meetings, each from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., will be held March 26 at Aberdeen Middle School, 111 Mount Royal School in Aberdeen; March 31 at Meade Middle School, 1003 26th St. at the fort; and April 2 at Chevy Chase High School, 4301 East-West Highway in Bethesda. The public will be able to meet with highway officials and comment about intersection projects. The O'Malley administration has set aside $94.8 million for BRAC-related intersection projects in its six-year transportation program. Officials said land purchases could begin by summer and construction contracts could be advertised next year.

Michael Dresser

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