County Administrator Michael D. Mallinoff today announced organizational changes to improve overall county government operations and services to residents. In the coming weeks, a new county department—the Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism—will be created. Several changes will also occur in the Departments of Public Works, Planning and Growth Management, and Community Services.

“This reorganization brings similar county government functions together by realigning existing divisions and creating a new department. The changes will greatly improve efficiency and interaction, and bring Charles County Government’s structure in line with other jurisdictions of similar size and service scope,” said Mallinoff. “After touring the county and meeting with the Commissioners, department directors, and staff, and reviewing other county government structures, it was determined that reorganization would be the best way to structure our staff and skills to meet the short- and long-range goals the Commissioners have established for our community. These changes set the foundation for a more effective and efficient county government now and in years to come.”

New Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism
The Recreation Division, Parks and Grounds Division, and the Tourism Office will move from their current departments to form a newly created county department—the Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism. Eileen Minnick, currently director of the Department of Community Services, will serve as director of the new department. Sam Drury will continue to head the Recreation Division.  Recruiting for a chief of Tourism and chief of Parks and Grounds is currently underway.   A new director will be hired to oversee the Department of Community Services, consisting of: Aging and Senior Programs Division, Housing Division, Vision 2020 Program, Local Management Board, and the Child Care Center.

“Charles County has been unique in having Recreation, Parks, and Tourism located within separate departments. The development of the new Recreation, Parks, and Tourism Department will bring together, under one roof, three dynamic divisions. This perfect pairing will formulate great synergies and teamwork. I am extremely honored to lead this new team of exceptional staff forward as we continue to provide increased opportunities for residents and visitors to our county,” said Minnick.

Capital Services Moving to Public Works
The Capital Services Division will move from the Department of Planning and Growth Management to the Department of Public Works.  Capital Services will be one of three major areas within Public Works, along with Utilities and Public Facilities. John Stevens will remain chief of Capital Services.

“This change will allow more sharing of resources to efficiently meet the growing needs of the county and improve staff’s ability to work together as a team in resolving common project issues,” said Public Works Director Bill Shreve.

Transportation Moving to Planning and Growth Management
The Transportation and Community Programs Division within the Department of Community Services will be restructured. Transportation, which provides general public transit through VanGO, will move from Community Services to the Department of Planning and Growth Management. This change will allow for better coordination of public transit services alongside long-range transportation projects. Jeffry Barnett will remain chief of Transportation.

“Sound transportation planning benefits from integration of the planning function with the delivery of transportation services.  This change will help Charles County better coordinate these roles and deliver services,” said Peter Aluotto, director of Planning and Growth Management. 

“I am excited about the operational and structural changes we are implementing to better serve Charles County residents.  Realigning similar functions into a new structure will enhance collaboration within county government and makes good business sense,” said Commissioner President Peter Murphy.

The Department of Recreation, Parks, and Tourism, and the Department of Community Services will both be located at the county building at 8190 Port Tobacco Road in Port Tobacco.  The Transportation Division will move to the County Government Building at 200 Baltimore Street in La Plata.  The Capital Services Division will move to the Audie Lane complex located in La Plata off Radio Station Road.