Thursday, September 18, 2014
From the Duck Hotline

I have been informed by a trusted source that Commissioner Debra Davis’ daughter has been hired for a position in the department of planning and growth management and this action is in violation of the county’s nepotism rules. An email has been sent to the HR Department asking for confirmation.

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Pauleen Brewer 10:01 AM | (19) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Animal Matters Hearing Board Meeting

Date:  09/16/2014

Listen
 

Sammy 06:40 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Charles County Commissioners Meeting Video

Date: 09/16/2014

Watch

Sammy 06:38 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Community Services Offers Children’s Birthday Party Packages

Birthday parties have never been so fun or easy! Choose a theme and a location, bring the kids and a birthday cake, and the Department of Community Services staff will take care of the rest. All parties are two hours on select Friday evenings, Saturdays, or Sundays, varying by location. Parties are for children turning age 4-12, unless otherwise noted.

For the first hour of the party, staff will lead the kids through the selected games or activity. The second hour is for your celebration. The Department of Community Services provides pizza, drinks, goodie bags, and paper products.

The cost for parties with up to 10 participants is $160, and 11-20 participants is $200.  There is $8 fee for each additional child up to a maximum of 30 participants, depending on location.  Cost includes set-up and clean-up, pizzas, juice boxes, one party favor for each attendee, paper products, and invitations. Parents may bring additional food, drinks, and/or other items to personalize their party.

Sammy 06:36 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Offshore Grand Prix Coming to Solomons
Southern Maryland News Net

High-powered, super-fast race boats and local food banks may not seem like a natural combination, but during the first weekend in October, they are a perfect match! That’s when the world of Offshore Racing shifts its focus to Southern Maryland for the Solomons Offshore Grand Prix.

Not only will the racers be thrilling the crowds with their racing prowess that weekend, they will also help restock local food banks with much needed food supplies as part of the “Race-2-Give” Food Drive.

Jamie McCarthy has a natural spunky enthusiasm that serves her well as head cheerleader for her husband’s race team. The mother of four active children, Jamie relies on her Christian faith to help her balance the demands of her family and career with her devotion to her husband Charlie’s passion – Offshore Powerboat Racing.

Sammy 06:34 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
U.S. sues online payday lenders over unsolicited loans
Daily Record

A federal judge shut down two online payday lending operations after U.S. regulators said they extracted more than $36 million from customers who never agreed to loans.

The operations bought personal data about people who were researching loans at other websites, deposited unsolicited money in their accounts and debited finance charges that exceeded the amount of the deposits, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission.

When some consumers tried to stop their banks from debiting the money, the companies produced fake loan documents testifying to the debt, said Jessica Rich, director of the FTC’s bureau of consumer protection. The lenders made mostly unsolicited loans totaling $125.3 million while extracting $161.9 million from bank accounts, the regulators said.

Sammy 06:28 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
4th Circuit hears cases on early strip-searches
Daily Record

A federal appeals court heard arguments Wednesday on whether jailers should be allowed to strip-search people who are arrested but still awaiting arraignment.

The cases out of West Virginia and Maryland pit individual privacy rights against the security needs of jails. A decision by the three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which conducted back-to-back hearings on the issue, is expected in a few weeks.

Both lawsuits were filed before the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2012 ruling that jailers may perform invasive strip searches on people arrested even for minor offense. However, plaintiffs’ attorneys said that 5-4 decision dealt with a person who was placed in the general jail population after arraignment. They also pointed to concurring opinions by two justices who questioned whether the ruling in the New Jersey case should apply to detainees held apart from other inmates.

Sammy 06:27 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Md. starts site for unaccompanied children
Daily Record

In an effort to help the almost 3,000 unaccompanied immigrant children who have arrived in Maryland this year, the state this week launched Buscando, a website designed to connect them and their caretakers with volunteers and resources.

Officials from Gov. Martin O’Malley’s administration debuted the website BuscandoMaryland.com during a press conference at the Hyattsville Branch Library on Wednesday. Ted Dallas, secretary of Maryland’s Department of Human Resources, said Buscando (“looking for” in Spanish) is the newest phase in the state’s response to the needs of unaccompanied children in Maryland.

Buscando is designed to serve as a database of resources for the children and their caretakers. For example, users can type in their location and search for clothing, and a map is generated which shows contact information for nearby organizations that will provide clothes.

Sammy 06:26 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Study: Americans endure unwanted care near death
MATT SEDENSKY ― WTOP

Americans suffer needless discomfort and undergo unwanted and costly care as they die, in part because of a medical system ruled by “perverse incentives” for aggressive care and not enough conversation about what people want, according to a report released Wednesday.

Though people repeatedly stress a desire to die at home, free from pain, the opposite often happens, the Institute of Medicine found in its “Dying in America” report. Most people do not document their wishes on end-of-life care and even those who do face a medical system poorly suited to give them the death they want, the authors found.

The result is breathing and feeding tubes, powerful drugs and other treatment that often fails to extend life and can make the final days more unpleasant. The report blamed a fee-for-service medical system in which “perverse incentives” exist for doctors and hospitals to choose the most aggressive care; inadequate training for those caring for the dying and physicians who default to life-saving treatment because they worry about liability.

Sammy 06:24 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Red tide off northwest Florida could hit economy
JASON DEAREN ― Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

It’s like Florida’s version of The Blob. Slow moving glops of toxic algae in the northeast Gulf of Mexico are killing sea turtles, sharks and fish, and threatening the waters and beaches that fuel the region’s economy.

Known as “red tide,” this particular strain called Karenia brevis is present nearly every year off Florida, but large blooms can be particularly devastating. Right now, the algae is collecting in an area about 60 miles wide and 100 miles long, about 5 to 15 miles off St. Petersburg in the south and stretching north to Florida’s Big Bend, where the peninsula ends and the Panhandle begins.

Fishermen who make a living off the state’s northwest coast are reporting fish kills and reddish water.

Sammy 06:19 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Phoenix Wait-Lists ‘Contributed’ to VA Deaths
Jim Avila ― ABC News

Delays caused by secret waiting lists “contributed” to deaths at the Phoenix VA earlier this year, an assistant inspector general who helped draft a controversial Inspector General report admitted today under intense questioning by the House Veterans Affairs Committee.

The assertion by Dr. John Daigh comes less than a month after the Office of the Inspector General proclaimed in its official report that it is “unable to conclusively assert that the absence of timely care caused the deaths of these veterans.”

Sammy 06:17 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Money It’s Time for a Data Breach Warning Label
ADAM LEVIN ― ABC News

The breach at Home Depot is only the most recent in a torrent of high-profile data compromises. Data and identity-related crimes are at record levels. Consumers are in uncharted territory, which raises a question: Is it time to do for data breaches and cybersecurity what the nutritional label did for food? I believe we need a Breach Disclosure Box, and that it can be a powerful consumer information and education tool.

Once a cost of doing business, today data breaches in the best-case scenario can sap a company’s bottom line, and at their worst represent an extinction-level event. The real-world effects for consumers can be catastrophic. Because there is a patchwork of state and federal laws related to data security—some good, some bad, all indecipherable—and none that work together, it’s impossible to know just how safe your personally identifiable information is, and has been, at the places where you shop and the companies and professional organizations with which you do business.

Sammy 06:15 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Self-Driving Cars Now Need a Permit in California
JUSTIN PRITCHARD ― ABC News

Computer-driven cars have been testing their skills on California roads for more than four years — but until now, the Department of Motor Vehicles wasn’t sure just how many were rolling around.

That changed Tuesday, when the agency required self-driving cars to be registered and issued testing permits that let three companies dispatch 29 vehicles onto freeways and into neighborhoods — with a human behind the wheel in case the onboard equipment makes a bad decision.

These may be the cars of the future, but for now they represent a tiny fraction of California’s approximately 32 million registered vehicles.

Sammy 06:13 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Western Maryland town named best place in U.S. to see fall colors
Dailynewsen.com

Nature lovers need to have to search no farther than Garrett County for the very best fall colors this year, according to Travel + Leisure magazine. Out of 20 towns featured, the national magazine awarded Oakland in Western Maryland the ideal town to view altering leaves.

“We are thrilled to be integrated on the list for Travel + Leisure Magazine,” said Sarah Duck, director of tourism and marketing and advertising for Garrett County Chamber of Commerce.

Sammy 06:12 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Gasoline prices forecast to drop to four-year lows this fall
Dailynewsen.com

Motorists have a thing to appear forward to this fall: the lowest gas rates in 4 years.

That’s according to a prediction from GasBuddy.com, the cost-tracking site. Company analysts mentioned the nation’s average gas cost should really tumble to a range of $three.15 to $three.25 for a gallon of frequent.

That would make for the cheapest autumn gas due to the fact 2010. Motorists in a lot more than 30 states are most likely to take pleasure in rates below $three at the pump, at least temporarily, GasBuddy mentioned this week.

Sammy 06:09 AM | (18) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
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