Senator Shelly Hettleman – D11
COVID 19 Update, Information and Resources
Date: January 17, 2021
There are currently 326,445 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state of Maryland (an increase of 2,414 in 24 hrs) with 6,394 deaths (+25) and 44,057 cases, with 1,029 deaths (31 probable deaths) in Baltimore County (1/17.)The MDH site and map will be updated daily and include data by zip code and ethnicity, as we are seeing the disproportionate racial and socioeconomic impacts this crisis is having on our community.
Please use this resource guide, the Baltimore County COVID19 Portal and this MD Financial Relief Guide to help navigate through the many challenges of this unprecedented crisis. For vaccine information, please fill out this form for Baltimore County vaccines and click HERE for Maryland information.
If you have any questions or need any support, please reach out to my office 410-841-3131 or firstname.lastname@example.org
COVID-19 Resource Guide
Meals & Food Assistance
Need Help? Emergency Contacts
Want to Help?
Business Resources & Commerce
Arts / Music / Non-Profit Information
Federal Response Information
Updated Election Information
Other Resources & Helpful Links
*NEW Update: Nov. 17th*
NEW ACTIONS EFFECTIVE FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 20 AT 5 PM:
The governor has issued an emergency order that takes the following actions—effective Friday, November 20 at 5 p.m.:
10 PM CLOSURE FOR BARS AND RESTAURANTS STATEWIDE. All bars, restaurants, and venues serving food and alcohol must close between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., except for the purposes of carryout and delivery.
LIMITED CAPACITY FOR RETAIL ESTABLISHMENTS AND RELIGIOUS FACILITIES. Capacity at retail establishments and religious facilities will be reduced to 50%, bringing them into line with indoor dining and personal services businesses, as well as bingo halls, bowling alleys, pool halls, roller and ice skating rinks, fitness centers, and social and fraternal clubs.
NO FANS FOR RACETRACKS AND STADIUMS. No fans or crowds will be permitted at racetracks or professional and collegiate stadiums across the state. The governor’s order reverts back to the previous order allowing 250 people onsite.
Businesses with questions about today’s orders should contact Secretary.Commerce@Maryland.gov.
ACTIONS ON HOSPITAL SURGE MANAGEMENT AND VISITATION:
HOSPITAL VISITATION PROHIBITED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. State health officials have issued an emergency order to prohibit all hospital visitation until further notice with some exceptions—including end-of-life care, obstetrics, parents or guardians of minors, and support for people with disabilities. Read the order.
NEW HOSPITAL SURGE MANAGEMENT ORDER. State health officials have issued an emergency order allowing hospitals that are either full or nearing capacity limits to transfer patients to hospitals that are equipped to provide them with the care they need. This will help alleviate the overcrowded hospitals in some areas of the state, and place patients in hospitals where beds are available. Read the order.
GUIDANCE ON ELECTIVE PROCEDURES. State health officials have issued guidance warning hospitals and other medical facilities to avoid any elective procedure admissions that are not urgent or life-saving—especially if they are likely to require prolonged artificial ventilation, ICU admissions, or may have a high probability of requiring post-hospital care in a skilled nursing facility. Read the guidance.
ACTIONS ON HOTSPOTS AND NURSING HOMES:
NEW LIMITATIONS ON NURSING HOME VISITATION. Until further notice, indoor visitation at Maryland nursing homes will generally be limited to compassionate care, and all visitors must have proof of a negative COVID-19 test result within 72 hours prior to their visit. Read the order.
NURSING HOME TESTING SURGE. State health officials have issued an order instituting mandatory twice-weekly testing for all staff at Maryland nursing homes, as well as mandatory weekly testing for all nursing home residents—effective no later than Friday, November 20. Read the order.
MORE RAPID RESPONSE TEAMS FOR HOTSPOTS AND OUTBREAKS. To tackle acute outbreaks, Governor Hogan is doubling the number of rapid response teams deployed to provide an extra level of triage and supplement local staffing needs.
- Rumor Control- Get the facts
- Schools will be providing up to 3 meals a day for all students. Locations can be found HERE
- Child care resources can be located HERE or by calling 1-877-261-0060
- Residential customers are protected from gas, water, electric, sewer, phone, cable, and internet services being shut off during state of emergency. Providers will not charge late fees. Extended through Nov. 1 Gov, order is HERE.
- For the duration of the state of emergency, residents will not be evicted.
- Continue to check with credible sources of information in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and promote social distancing in order to slow the spread of the virus.
For documents related to COVID19 in other languages- click HERE
Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski announced the County’s Coordinated Response to the COVID-19 pandemic:
CASES IN THE COUNTY
Use Baltimore County’s COVID-19 Response Hub to find statistics and geographical information about coronavirus cases within the County.
Baltimore County is currently in a modified Stage Three of the state’s recovery plan.
Operations at Restaurants at 50 Percent: Under Maryland’s latest Executive Order, operations at restaurants must decrease from 75 to 50 percent capacity, with appropriate distancing, and following strict public health requirements consistent with the CDC, FDA, and the National Restaurant Association, effective Wednesday, November 11, at 5 p.m. Restaurants and bars must close by 10 p.m. each evening. View Governor Hogan’s Executive Order (PDF).
Social Gatherings Limited to 10 People Indoors, 25 People Outdoors: Under Baltimore County’s latest Executive Order, indoor social gatherings of more than 10 people and outdoor social gatherings of more than 25 people are prohibited, effective Sunday, November 15, at 5 p.m. Social gatherings include, but are not limited to, family gatherings, parties, cookouts, parades, festivals, conventions, fundraisers, and other gatherings not associated with operating or patronizing a business.
Social gatherings do not includes restaurants, businesses, private schools, child care, or other establishments where existing, specific state orders are already in place. View County Executive Olszewski’s Executive Order (PDF) and Interpretive Guidance (PDF).
Baltimore County officials will continue to monitor the spread of COVID-19 and determine the appropriate course of action to keep Baltimore County residents safe and minimize the spread of COVID-19.
FACE COVERING REQUIREMENTS
Baltimore County individuals ages 5 and up are required to wear face coverings in any indoor business, service, organization or establishment that serves the general public. This includes, but is not limited to, retail establishments, recreational establishments, houses of worship and other locations open to the public. Read the full Health Department Directive and Order (PDF).
Residents are required to wear masks in outdoor public areas where social distancing of at least six-feet is not possible.
Individuals will not be required to wear a mask if:
- Eating or drinking while seated at food service establishments. In accordance with Governor Hogan’s orders, face coverings are still required when otherwise moving in or about a restaurant or bar premises.
- A face covering cannot be worn due to a medical condition, mental health condition or disability.
For more information, please see Governor Hogan’s Order (PDF) regarding face coverings.
- Residents Should Continue to Stay Home Residents and visitors to Baltimore County should continue to stay at home unless they are traveling to work or medical appointments, shopping for groceries or picking up other retail goods, or traveling to outdoor recreational opportunities. Older and more vulnerable residents are strongly advised to continue staying home as much as possible.
Residents and visitors should practice safe physical distancing and wear masks in public, and frequently wash their hands and sanitize high-touch areas.
Employers should continue to encourage telework for their employees when possible. Individuals who can work from home should continue to do so.This applies to all retail establishments outside of those considered essential under the state’s previous orders. Curbside pickup and delivery is strongly encouraged, and all public health precautions should remain in place.
- Click HERE for the Baltimore County COVID19 Resource Guide
- Click HERE for guidance from BCPD Chief Hyatt on the wearing of masks in Baltimore County
- An executive order providing an extension of all county licenses, permits, registrations, and other authorizations has been issued until 30 days following the end of the local state of emergency.
- All non-essential meetings of public boards, commissions, or committees have been cancelled or postponed. Members of the public are prohibited from attending meetings that are deemed not essential, but will be instructed as to how to participate or observe on a case by case basis.
- As with the Governor’s instructions and County Executive’s request, Sheriff R. Jay Fisher has agreed to suspend all evictions for the duration of the state of emergency in the County.
- Water shutoffs have been halted.
- All meetings and appointments currently scheduled with the County departments or staff are cancelled. Access to County buildings will be restricted. For more information check the County website HERE.
- Payments for property taxes, water bills, parking, red light and speed camera tickets as well as pet licenses can be made online There is a convenient payment (check only) collection drop-box located outside of Room 150 of the Historic Courthouse
- Non-essential County employees will telework and all County travel is suspended
- Baltimore County Employee Resources- click HERE
- Residents can visit the BaltCo Go-Online Map to find the closest available free internet service throughout the County. Users can search for locations closest to where they live. 9 library locations offer free external WiFi access in their parking lots.
- The Emergency Declaration remains in place to address COVID-19, and the County has taken actions to protect employees and members of the public and minimize the spread of COVID-19.
For a list of new County building restrictions, contact information, and details on fast-track bar and restaurant alcohol delivery, click HERE.
Baltimore County Health Department Hotline
The Baltimore County Department of Health has a hotline for residents to call with questions or concerns about COVID-19: the number is 410-887-3816. The hotline is open seven days a week, from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Maryland Health Connection information HERE or call 410-500-4710
Guidance from the CDC on running necessary errands, click HERE
Baltimore County residents can reserve a slot for a free COVID-19 test online.
Appointments are available at both walk-up and drive-through sites for Thursday, June 4 through Tuesday, June 9. New dates are added every Wednesday.
Residents no longer need a doctor’s note to obtain a test. When scheduling a test, you will enter your contact information and choose a location and appointment time for your test.
While reserving a time slot is recommended, all individuals visiting a County testing location will be served.
Adults must show identification upon arrival for their test. Adults accompanying a minor for testing must write down the child’s name and date of birth to present to staff upon arrival at the site.
Individuals may visit any of the four County sites between 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on the days indicated. Site locations and days of operation are:
Liberty Family Resource Center
3525 Resource Drive, Randallstown, Maryland 21133
Walk-up clinic, open Mondays.
Dundalk Health Center
7700 Dunmanway, Dundalk, Maryland 21222
Walk-up clinic, open Mondays.
Maryland Vehicle Emissions Program (VEIP)
11510 Cronridge Drive, Owings Mills, Maryland 21117
Drive-through clinic, open Wednesdays and Fridays.
Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium
2200 York Road, Timonium, Maryland 21093
Drive-through clinic, open Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Residents can check with their local pharmacies about testing availability and can call the Baltimore County COVID-19 Hotline at 410-887-3816 with other coronavirus-related questions. The hotline is open seven days a week from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Need health insurance? Access Maryland Health Connection information HERE or call 410-500-4710
If you had been diagnosed with COVID19 and are recovering, access resources, information and support HERE
Guidance from the CDC on running necessary errands, click HERE
Johns Hopkins COVID19 Resource Center HERE
Insurance Update: Enroll Now
As part of the state’s overall response to the coronavirus, and in an effort to prioritize health and safety, Maryland Health Connection opened a new special enrollment period for uninsured Marylanders. This is a special enrollment period running through December 15th. Marylanders can enroll at MarylandHealthConnection.gov or by calling 1-855-642-8572 from 6am-11pm weekdays. Trained navigators are available by phone. For more information, click HERE
Health Organizations & Information
The American Diabetes Association is providing support and guidance to constituents impacted by diabetes, who are at higher risk of getting very sick from COVID-19. You can access helpful resources, understand your risk, know your legal rights, and connect with community at diabetes.org/coronavirus. Make sure you know how to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19 and what to do if you or a loved one develops symptoms. In addition, many people are now facing unexpected financial hardships. If you are struggling to pay for insulin, the ADA has resources to help – visit InsulinHelp.org.
Questions? The American Diabetes Association is here to help during this challenging time: click here or call their Center for Information at 1-800-DIABETES (800-342-2383).
Other Diabetes Resources: The Lilly Insulin Value Program allows anyone with commercial insurance and those without insurance to fill their monthly prescription of Lilly insulin for $35. The program is effective today 4/7 and covers most Lilly insulins. Details and more information can be found in the press release here: https://e.lilly/2wjEr7J.
Maryland Humanities: Making time to stay connected with friends, family, and community is vital—especially right now. Join us next week as we launch a new online project. We’ll pose a question each week as a conversation starter, some serious and some just for fun. You will find the questions on our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages. Comment on the posts or call our hotline at (443) 484-TALK and leave a message that we’ll share later. We hope you’ll join us in this new project. #LetsTalkMaryland
if you had been diagnosed with COVID 19 please click HERE
The Maryland Department of Aging offers a senior check in call service-free! Simply register HERE and receive a daily check in call. For information on protecting older or vulnerable adults, click HERE.
If you are a senior, or contacting us on behalf of a senior, with food access needs, call 410-887-2954 or email email@example.com
For guidance on shopping information click HERE
Food for Seniors
Boxes will be distributed by appointment only at three senior center locations in three different regions of the County:
- WEST – Tuesday, May 12 – 10 a.m. – Noon, Liberty Senior Center – 3525 Resource Drive, Randallstown, Maryland 21133.
- NORTH – Tuesday, May 12 – 10 a.m. – Noon, Parkville Senior Center, 8601 Harford Road, Parkville, Maryland 21234.
- EAST – Thursday, May 14 – 10 a.m. – Noon, Ateaze Senior Center, 7401 Holabird Avenue, Dundalk, Maryland 21222.
Baltimore County residents over 60 years of age should call 410-887-2040 to schedule their pick-up date, time and location. Only individuals with appointments will receive a box of food. During the appointment, individuals will be asked to show proof of age through their BCDA Senior Center Membership Card or other identification.
Anyone unable to travel to these locations should contact Maryland Access Point (MAP) at 410-887-2594 to discuss other food options with the MAP staff.
The Department of Aging plans to continue to provide meals through the end of June, or until the senior centers reopen to the public, whichever comes first.
Guidance from the CDC on running necessary errands, click HERE
Thanks to Councilman Patoka’s office for compiling the special senior shopping hours below.
Click HERE to find D11 restaurant delivery options
Baltimore County Closings
Baltimore County Public Libraries Closed: Curbside pickup available. Digital resources are available 24/7.
UPDATE: Phased opening starting Mon., June 15. This phased reopening begins on Monday June 15, 2020 with a limited number of staff returning to library buildings to begin internal preparations. Staff will be preparing work spaces, receiving and processing 8,000 new books and resources for users, gathering the 58,000 customer holds and planning for the return of the 400,000+ items borrowed before the library closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.
Baltimore County Senior Centers Closed: All Baltimore County Senior Centers will be closed to the public beginning until further notice. Seniors can call the Maryland Access Point hotline at 410-887-2594. Calls are answered by a team of Certified Information and Assistance Specialists, Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Department of Recreation and Parks: All Department of Recreation and Parks buildings are closed to the public until further notice. County parks remain open to the public, but playground equipment, dog parks, skate parks, comfort stations, and portable toilets are closed.
CCBC : Classes via remote instruction only.
Baltimore County Public School Updates
BCPS Helpful links:
- BCPS schools and offices are closed through the end of the year, online learning continues. Buildings are closed through June 22. The new Continuity of Learning Plan is available for students through the BCPS site.
BCPS Meals will be distributed from 62 locations. While students are encouraged to be present when picking up meals, accommodations will be made for students who are unable to be present. At all sites, students will receive a breakfast, lunch, and snack on Monday through Wednesday. On Thursday, students will receive two breakfasts, two lunches, and two snacks for Thursday and Friday. Meals will no longer be distributed on Friday.
- The Dept. of Rec and Parks, under the Maryland Food Bank and St. Vincent de Paul of Baltimore, will also offer meal distribution (first come first serve basis) weekdays from 11AM-1PM to children 18 & under at the sites listed HERE
- For printable list of site in Spanish, Chinese, Urdu click HERE
- The BCPS Coronavirus Updates webpage contains Student Learning Resources for voluntary materials by grade and subject, meal locations, and a question portal for staff and community members.
- Child care needs? LOCATE services can be found HERE or by calling 1-877-261-0060
- Please continue to check the BCPS Coronavirus Updates webpage under FREE MEAL SITES for the latest list
Student meals are available in the parking lots of the locations identified on weekdays through April 24th, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
- Access Student Resources HERE
- Resources for students with Special Needs HERE
- Resources for parents of children with Autism HERE
- Directions for Accessing Practice Resources in Schoolology: HERE
- Need some additional ideas for your students at home? Check out resources HERE
AP students now have access to free live AP review sessions presented by AP teachers across the country, with a focus on course content that has been previously covered in the classroom. For the 2020 exams, there are secure 45-minute online exams for each course. There will be two exam periods: May 11-22 and June 1-5. Additional information and regular updates will be posted here.
To honor its extraordinary Class of 2020 during these extraordinary times, Baltimore County Public Schools is pleased to share the schedule for upcoming upcoming virtual high school graduations. Additional information about how to view the ceremonies and how graduating seniors will receive their caps and gowns will be forthcoming from school principals.
Baltimore County Meals & Food Assistance
Baltimore County Meals- Food Assistance
Baltimore County Public Schools Office of Food and Nutrition Services Fall Meal Distribution 2020 Baltimore County Public Schools will provide school meals, at no cost, to all children ages 2-18 by curbside pickup or by bus delivery. For details, click HERE.
Click HERE for Baltimore County meal distribution locations. The following locations will offer grocery pickup every Saturday 11-1. Locations with * will also offer Grab-and-Go meals from 4 to 6 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays on a first come, first served basis.
- Arbutus Community Center, 865 Sulphur Spring Rd, Halethorpe, MD 21227
- Bear Creek Elementary School, 1607 Melbourne Rd, Dundalk, MD 21222
- *Cockeysville PAL Center, 9836 Greenside Dr, Cockeysville, MD 21030
- Colgate Elementary School, 401 51st St, Baltimore, MD 21224
- *Dundalk PAL Center, 15 Commerce Place Dundalk, Maryland 21222
- Eastern Regional Park, 11723 Eastern Avenue Baltimore MD 21220
- Edgemere Elementary School, 7201 North Point Rd, Edgemere, MD 21219
- Edmondson Heights Elementary School, 1600 Langford Rd., Baltimore, MD 21207
- Fullerton Elementary School, 4400 Fullerton Ave, Nottingham, MD 21236
- Grange Elementary School, 2000 Church Rd, Dundalk, MD 21222
- Halethorpe Elementary School, 4300 Maple Ave, Halethorpe, MD 21227
- Hereford Senior Center, 510 Monkton Road, Monkton MD, 21111
- *Hillendale PAL Center 1111 Halstead Road Baltimore, Maryland 21234
- Lansdowne Elementary School, 2301 Alma Rd, Baltimore, MD 21227
- *Mars Estates PAL Center 1498 East Homberg Avenue Baltimore, Maryland 21221
- Martin Boulevard Elementary School, 210 Riverton Rd, Baltimore, MD 21220
- Parkville High School, 8711 Avondale Rd, Parkville, MD 21234
- Perry Hall Elementary School, 9021 Belair Rd, Nottingham, MD 21236
- Randallstown Elementary School, 9013 Liberty Rd, Randallstown, MD 21133
- Reisterstown Senior Center, 12035 Reisterstown Rd, Reisterstown, MD 21136
- *Scotts Branch PAL Center 3651 Rolling Road Baltimore, Maryland 21244
- *Shady Spring PAL Center 8876 Goldenwood Road Baltimore, Maryland 21237
- Sollers Point Multi-Purpose Center 323 Sollers Point Road, Dundalk, Maryland 21222
- Warren Elementary School, 900 Bosley Rd, Cockeysville, MD 21030
- West Town Elementary School, 401 Harlem Ln, Catonsville, MD 21228
- *Winfield PAL Center, 8304 Carlson Lane Baltimore, Maryland 21244
- Woodbridge Elementary School, 1410 Pleasant Valley Drive, Baltimore, MD 21228
- Woodmoor PAL Center, 7111 Croydon Road Baltimore, Maryland 21207
Available Restaurant Services: BaltCo To-Go
Restaurants can self-report whether they are offering services during this time by completing the County’s online form. Restaurant operators can share their location and what services they are providing, and the data collected will populate an interactive online map, BaltCo To-Go, that residents can search.
Click HERE to find D11 restaurant delivery options
Need Help? Emergency Contact Information
Need help? Click HERE for Baltimore County support services
Mental health and well being are essential. For support and resources, click HERE
The MD Network Against Domestic Violence has a list of help: House of Ruth 24 Hour Hotline 410-889-7884, Turn Around 24 Hour Helpline 443-279-0379, or for immediate danger dial 911.
Baltimore County support to prevent domestic violence HERE
Johns Hopkins University: Resources and information click HERE
LifeBridge: Offers guidance for accessing healthcare. For more information, click HERE
BGE: BGE is taking steps to expand awareness of programs in place to help customers through temporary or extended financial hardship. BGE customers can apply for energy assistance through the Maryland Department of Human Services, by visiting a Local Energy Assistance Office, or by contacting the Office of Home Energy Programs. Download our Community Resource Guide for a complete list of resources. For your awareness, the Maryland Governor’s moratorium on residential service terminations expires Sept. 1, and the Maryland Public Service Commission issued an order Aug. 31, which prohibits formal utility termination notices to residential customer until Oct. 1 and utility disconnections of any residential customer’s service until after Nov. 15.
BGE is reminding customers that there are many flexible payment option and energy assistance programs available for customers having difficulty keeping their accounts current. Recognizing the financial challenges on some customers as a result of the pandemic, BGE will continue to work with customers to ensure the continuation of their gas and electric services.
Following guidance from the Maryland Public Service Commission, BGE has expanded billing and payment options to include:
- Elimination of down payment/security deposit requirements to secure a payment arrangement
- Extension of payment periods for balances for a minimum of 12 months for residential customers or 24 months for customers receiving energy assistance from the state’s Office of Home Energy Programs (OHEP)
BGE will also connect customers to agency energy assistance funds to which BGE has increased contributions.
The most important step that residential customers who are not current on their BGE bill can take is to contact BGE at 1.800.685.0123 and BGE.com/assistance as soon as possible. Customers should never wait until they are in crisis to contact us. The time is now.
Verizon: Verizon announced for the next 60 days, it will waive late fees that any residential or small business customers incur because of their economic circumstances related to the coronavirus. Additional Verizon expanded data plans and services can be found HERE.
- Free “Internet Essentials” Service: Low-income families who live in a Comcast service area can sign up for 60 days of complimentary Internet Essentials service if you apply by May 13, 2020. To sign up, applicants can simply visit www.internetessentials.com or by calling 1-855-846-8376 for English and 1-855-765-6995 for Spanish.
- Free Public Wi-Fi Hotspots: Any resident can now access hundreds of Comcast public Wi-Fi hotspots throughout the County. Locations available at: https://wifi.Xfinity.com
Assistance & Volunteers Needed– Can you help?
Maryland hospitals are desperately seeking “powered air purifying respirators” or “PAPRs” to equip medical professionals for the coming wave of corona cases. Contact: Brain Schott (443)417-5738 or for more information click HERE
The District 11 Team has come together to match folks needing a hand with folks who want to lend a hand! For more information, click HERE
Baltimore County has established a COVID19 Emergency Response Fund to be managed by the Baltimore Co. Community Foundation to promote public health and support residents during this crisis. For more info. or to contribute, click HERE
Baltimore County Together- Donate, Volunteer, Find Resources HERE
A coordinated statewide effort for outreach and volunteers: Maryland Unites can be found HERE.
Baltimore County Student Support Network is asking for your help with essential needs. For more information, click HERE.
LifeBridge Health seeks volunteers to help make masks for health care providers, using material and equipment donated by Under Armour. Sewers and non sewers can sign up to volunteer HERE
Emergency Grocery Card Drive for Food: From the Student Support Network- we need to replenish our grocery gift cards to purchase more food for distributions next week and possibly after, and for staff to distribute to students/ families facing hunger.
Grocery stores: Giant, Safeway, Aldi, Shoppers, Weis- Cards of $15 to $50 in value are best to divide for students and families
- Donate funds on the website below; choose “Emergency Grocery Card Drive” under donation categories – www.studentsupportnetwork.org
- Mail grocery cards to Student Support Network, 1740 E. Joppa Rd., Suite 200, Baltimore 21234
- Do an individual or group drive for cards – if you collect 10 cards or more and would like to drop them off, contact Jess at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will arrange a pick-up.
Maryland Division of Unemployment BEACON One-Stop Application. You will be able to file a claim for many different unemployment benefit programs using this one application. You will also use this site to request your benefit payments by filing your weekly claim certification HERE
BEACON Tutorial Information HERE
What information will I need before I apply? Find a list HERE
Need other information about your claim? The Department of Labor Information for Claimants can be found HERE
New online tool provided by the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) to help determine Families First Coronavirus Relief Act (FFCRA) eligibility.
If you, or someone you know has lost their job as businesses have been forced to temporarily close, Maryland’s unemployment insurance program is here to help pay the bills and keep families on their feet. Thanks to legislation passed in the Maryland Senate, Maryland has temporarily waived the work search requirement for individuals receiving unemployment insurance benefits. Additionally, Maryland does not require a lapse between unemployment and eligibility for benefits.
Other Frequently asked Questions can be found HERE
Need to file a missing claim certification? Click HERE
Frustrated? Here is the latest update from the Governor’s Communication Office as of 4/8
Need a job? For current job openings and resources click HERE
Baltimore County Business Resources
New! 7/22 Baltimore County $600,0000 for Local Businesses through Chamber of Commerce Grants The COVID-19 Business Corridor Sustainability Grant Program is narrowly focused on providing financial support to Baltimore County’s small business associations and chambers of commerce so that they can provide professional-level services to support member and nonmember businesses in their communities.
A total of $600,000 will be awarded to eligible applicants, capped at $20,000 per organization. Applicants will be required to submit a proposal that demonstrates how the organization plans to utilize these funds to support small businesses in Baltimore County by providing COVID-19 related services.
7/19: Small Business Reimbursement Grant Program Applications available Wed. July 15 at 9am- First come, first served!
The Small Business COVID-19 Reimbursement Grant Program is a $3 million fund established to help Baltimore County’s small businesses harmed by the COVID-19 pandemic. Baltimore County will provide up to a maximum of $10,000 in reimbursement funds to a small business that has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. If a business permanently closes, the entire reimbursement amount must be returned to the County within 14 business days. FAQ’s can be found HERE
Although the public health emergency caused by the spread of COVID-19 is having drastic impacts on families, workers, and small businesses, the State of Maryland is doing its part to provide economic relief. Below, you will find information on a few of the programs created to support both workers and small businesses, as well as the web links to access them.
The Baltimore County website includes links to resources as well as a form to request COVID-19 Impact Assistance. Please consider taking this survey that will inform local and state leaders on how to best respond in supporting small businesses and non-profits during this crisis.
*NEW* A Guide for Preparing for the Payroll Protection Loan Program- Round 2
Baltimore County’s economic and workforce development professionals will host a series of free webinars to help small businesses and affected workers navigate available assistance resources and plan for eventual economic recovery. Check HERE for a recording of the first webinar and to register for future ones.
The Maryland Business Relief Wizard is a tool that helps connect businesses with the resources and programming for which they’re eligible, streamlining the process of finding support.
Employers who participate in Work Sharing reduce the hours of their employees, rather than laying them off completely, and their employees receive a UI benefit to help compensate them for the lost wages. These Work Sharing benefits are also increased by $600 per week.
April 14th FAQ Update from MD Commerce Secretary Kelly Schultz HERE
- Why is my application still in review? The database/workflow system that we created places every completed application in the first workflow process – this is labeled as ‘in review’ in the OneStop system. The reality is that this is more of a ‘queue’ to be reviewed. The status will stay as ‘in review’ until the review team gets that specific application to move it forward. All applicants then have the ability to track their application through OneStop.
- Why is it taking so long to get reviewed? Within the first few hours of the applications being announced on March 23 (3 weeks ago), we had thousands of applications. Within 48 hours, we realized that our current Commerce programs couldn’t handle the workload. We quickly obtained a vendor to help us create the new OneStop system. Remarkably, the new system was up and running within 2 weeks, but it was going to take more bodies to address the high volumes. On March 25, our department sent out an emergency notification to our state agency partners asking for state employee volunteers to begin working on the business relief efforts. We have been working to onboard more than 150 volunteers into our effort, which included extensive training with our new database. As a point of reference, the Department of Commerce only has a little over 200 employees. Additionally, we are putting in place internal controls so that the process has checks and balances. We are aware that we are utilizing tax payer funds and we are taking precautions to insure that these funds are spent appropriately.
- When will I know if my application is accepted? Unfortunately, this is a date that I cannot provide. Our operations are getting stronger by the day, but we are still making improvements to the system. We simply ask for patience with the expectation that our state employees are working around the clock to deliver on their commitment.
- Can you look up my application to see where it is in the process? Every time my team takes time to look up one of 40,000 applications in the system, we are missing an opportunity to approve someone else. I recognize that your constituents are putting a great deal of pressure on you. We are moving as fast as we can to get the job done. I ask you to not expect a personal review on any application. We are expected to have transparency for the entire process and do not want it to seem as if we were singling out specific requests from legislators.
- Why isn’t the department getting this information out to the public? To date I have conducted 54 information sessions. This includes congressional webinars, legislative town halls, business industry conference calls, etc. I have not turned one down. If you would like us to participate in one in your district, we would be honored to do so. Our website https://govstatus.egov.com/md-coronavirus-business is a very extensive resource for our community.
- What happens when we run out of state funds? This system was set up so that we could handle large quantities of applications. IF we receive additional federal funds, we could possibly look at putting additional funds into these programs. One of the reasons we kept the application open until last Monday was so that we could make it easier for businesses IF we get additional funds. There would be no additional start up time, or need for additional applications from the businesses.
- What’s next? Last week, we kicked off the Tourism Recovery Task Force. We want businesses to know that we are thinking about the future. We WILL open our doors soon, and we want to be ready. This week, we are starting a Manufacturing Recovery Task Force. This industry also needs some guidelines to be Open for Business!
Small Business Administration Resource
Join the SBA Daily Conference Call every Monday-Friday for updates and ask questions.
3:00pm, Call 202-765-1264, Conf Call ID# 827-299-626
5:30pm, Call 202-765-1264, Conf Call ID# 310-688-488
We encourage businesses throughout Maryland to continue exploring other forms of assistance, such as federal and local programs found below, including SBA’s Emergency Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program and the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). For more information on federal resources, read the Small Business Owner’s guide to the CARES Act, or find more details from the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
Please continue to check the COVID-19 Information for Businesses webpage for the latest business resources and guidance. This site will be updated frequently as new information becomes available. It includes an FAQ for Maryland businesses planning and responding to the outbreak.
From the MD Department of Commerce: If your business does not fit into one of the categories for closing in the executive order, we strongly recommend that you use your best judgement and consider the possible impact on your employees and customers if you stay open. Public utility, such as the need to provide food or essential supplies, must be balanced with the need to preserve public health. If you remain open, it is critical that you follow social distancing guidelines and do everything in your power to prevent groups of 10 or more people from congregating in one area. This may require you to make difficult choices. Guidance from the CDC for businesses is available here.
National Federation of Independent Businesses
NFIB’s latest webinar on the CARES Act stimulus plan is now available on the website. A link to the presentation and slides is below:
NFIB has put together a new webpage providing guidance to our small business community on the Paycheck Protection Program – the centerpiece of the CARES Act. It includes a side-by-side graphic detailing the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program and the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). There are also links to the applications.
Important to note is that small business owners are eligible for a grant up to $10,000 through the SBA’s EIDL program. This money will be disbursed within 3 days of applying.
- NFIB has posted that guidance along with the required posters for private sector employers:NFIB: USDOL Issues Mandatory Poster and New Guidance on Coronavirus Paid Leave Law This page also contains a fact sheet on the Paid Leave Law and a Coronavirus FAQ.
- View the NFIB webinar on the CARES Act stimulus bill that includes an explanation of the tax relief offered in the federal bills; information on how small businesses owners can get financial support, including a discussion of the grant and forgiveness programs Watch HERE
- NFIB COVID-19 Part IV: How to Apply for a Coronavirus Small Business Loan
Businesses interested in a PPPL have been advised by the U.S. Treasury Department to apply as quickly as they can because there is a funding cap.
Up to Date Business Guidance and Information HERE
Find a full list of Governor Hogan’s executive orders here, and find guidance on business closures here, here and here. If “essential” or “non-essential” status is still unclear, please use this as guidance.
Arts / Music / Non-Profit Information
Arts Organizations: The Maryland State Arts Council (MSAC) has created special grant opportunities that provide emergency funding to arts organizations and artists in Maryland as they adjust to losses sustained because of programming, operations, and events that have been modified or cancelled. Full guidelines and rubrics are available here.
- County Executive Olszewski is making available $100,000 to provide $1,000 stipends for up to 100 artists to help them recoup some of their financial losses due to the pandemic.
- NEW! Beginning Tuesday, May 12, 501c3 organizations in good standing or organizations with a fiscal sponsor can submit online grant applications to provide emergency needs up to $15,000 at www.bcf.org/emergencyresponsefund
- Grants will be available on a first-come, first-served basis until funds are depleted, and priority will be given to lower income artists, making $37,500 or less per year. Applicants will submit a streamlined application, document their artistic portfolio, and must be adult Baltimore County residents over the age of 18. The application process will open on May 11, 2020 and details will be available on the Baltimore County Office of Tourism and Cultural Arts webpage
The programs and initiatives in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was passed by Congress are intended to assist individuals, families, and business owners with whatever needs they have right now. For a small business guide to the CARES Act compiled by Senator Cardin, click HERE
For a comprehensive overview of COVID19 support available from the federal government, check the following federal representatives:
- HERE for Sen. Cardin
- HERE for Sen. Van Hollen
- HERE for Congressman Rupersberger
- HERE for Congressman Sarbanes
Resource lists include information on: families and individuals, health care, direct payments, housing assistance, child care, nutrition assistance, seniors, student loans, international travel, workers and small businesses, unemployment, emergency leave, loans and grants, tax relief, contracting and more.
FAQ on the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) can be found HERE
The federal government is beginning to announce programs to further support workers and small businesses and legislation works its way through Congress. The Small Business Administration (SBA) currently has two disaster loan programs available to all small business owners. Information on the programs can be found below and more information can be found HERE.
- Paycheck Protection Program: The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities. You can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating. Other regulated lenders will be available to make these loans once they are approved and enrolled in the program. You should consult with your local lender as to whether it is participating in the program.
- Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program: This program provides targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses and nonprofits that have been severely impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.
- SBA Express Bridge Loans: This program allows small businesses who currently have a business relationship with an SBA Express Lender to access up to $25,000 with less paperwork. These loans can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing and can be a term loan or used to bridge the gap while applying for a direct SBA Economic Injury Disaster loan.
All Electronic Tolls-All drivers should KEEP MOVING through toll plazas without stopping. Cash payment lanes will operate as video tolling (cashless) lanes. Motorists who usually pay with cash will be mailed a Notice of Toll Due for the cash toll rate. For more info click HERE
Translated Resources or documents related to COVID19 in other languages- can be found HERE
Aquí está el número de la línea directa en español 667-600-2314
Updated Election Information
The Maryland General Election is scheduled for November 3rd. There has been much concern over the safety and accessibility of this election. Despite the health and safety concerns, the Governor has decided to hold in person elections with an option to request a mail in ballot. Here is the latest (8/11): The Governor has agreed to the Board of Elections’ recommendations to open 360 voting centers across the state. Voting centers will be located in all public high schools and some larger community centers. This will allow voters who wish to vote in-person to do so at ANY location within their county, rather than needing to go to an assigned precinct. The voting centers will replace 1,800 separate polling places. Baltimore County Voting Centers can be found here. The move comes as a result of widespread shortages of available precinct judges. If you feel comfortable to work in person and want to be an election judge, please apply here.
There continues to be significant issues with voter confusion. An absentee ballot APPLICATION will be mailed to every eligible voter. The ballot itself must be requested in order to vote by mail. PLEASE CONSIDER REQUESTING YOUR BALLOT NOW TO AVOID DELAYS. There are three ways to request a mail-in/drop off ballot.
2) Complete and return one of the forms below. Read the instructions, enter the required information, print the form, sign it, and return it to your local board of elections. You can return it by mail, fax, or email (scanned as an attachment).
3) Go to your local board of elections and fill out and turn in the form.
You can check your voting information here
If you need to register to vote, click here or you can do same day registration on election day at the voting centers (if you are comfortable in person)
Make your voice and your vote COUNT!
Contact the Board of Elections for more information.
Everyone Counts! The 2020 Census is currently underway. It’s important that every resident in Baltimore County is counted. For each person not counted, Baltimore County will lose over $18,000 in federal funding for our schools, infrastructure, healthcare, and more. If 20 percent of our population goes uncounted in the 2020 Census, Baltimore County will lose $305 million per year in federal funding. We cannot afford to lose anything! The Census takes just five minutes to complete and we encourage you to ask family and friends to take it, too. You can complete the Census right now, right here. For specific information regarding the Baltimore County Census, contact email@example.com
CASA Census Information HERE
Remember, it’s easy, important, and it’s safe.
The following links will help you learn more about specific groups, travel advisories and other important information about COVID-19.
- COVID-19 Website
- COVID-19 Fact Sheet
- Global Map of Virus Spread
- Guidance for Healthcare Professionals
- Guidance for High-Risk Groups
- Guidance for Infection Control
- Guidance for Pregnant or Breastfeeding Women & Children
- Preventing COVID-19 Community Spread
- Resources for Healthcare Facilities
- Situation in the United States
- Travel Alerts
- What You Should Know
Take care, practice an abundance of caution, and don’t hesitate to reach out should you need assistance.
Senator, District 11
203 James Senate Building
Annapolis, MD 21401