LEONARDTOWN, Md. – The Commissioners of St. Mary’s County held their first regular business meeting of the new year in the Chesapeake Building Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022.

The Commissioners recognized two retirees from the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office; Harold Young and Michael Gardiner.

Dr. Meenakshi Brewster, county health officer, provided the monthly COVID-19 brief to the Commissioner-led Board of Health. Topics included information about rising COVID case numbers in the county, testing and vaccination updates. The Commissioners approved providing $250,000 in funding to the health department for the purchase of at-home COVID-19 testing kits for distribution to St. Mary’s County residents.

The Department of Land Use & Growth Management received approval for an ordinance that includes the suggestions from the Alcoholic Beverage Board to amend the Comprehensive Zoning Ordinance for Agricultural Alcoholic Beverage Production and Alcoholic Beverage Production and delete the current uses of Distillery, Winery and Farm Brewery.

The Department of Land Use & Growth Management also requested to hold two Public Hearings. The first hearing is to receive public comment on a proposal to amend the Comprehensive Plan Land Use Map and Zoning Map to change the Land Use Map category from Rural Preservation to Residential Mixed-use and Zoning Map from Rural Preservation to Residential Mixed-use for specific listed properties.

The second request for a Public Hearing is to hear from the community regarding a proposal to amend the Comprehensive Plan Land Use Map and Zoning Map for property located at 29871 Three Notch Road, Charlotte Hall, to change the Comprehensive Plan Land Use Map category from Mixed-use Moderate Intensity and residential Mixed-use to entirely Mixed-use Moderate Intensity and Zoning Map of the split-zoned property from Residential Mixed-use and Town Center Mixed-use to entirely Town Center Mixed-use. The Commissioners approved both Public Hearing requests and formal notices for the hearings will be forthcoming.

A Board of Education request to increase the St. Mary’s County Public Schools FY2022 Restricted Fund Budget by $148,314 to support the implementation of the LEAP Grant was approved. Funding from the LEAP Grant will provide extended academic programming at George Washington Carver Elementary.

A supplemental award of $11,199.16 for the Administrative Office of the Courts was accepted by the Commissioners. Funding from the award will support costs associated with family support services.

The Commissioners granted a property tax credit incentive request from the Department of Economic Development to Irony LLC. The incentive, adopted by the Commissioners in 2017, allows businesses in certain industries that create 10 or more jobs to receive a tax credit for up to 10 years.

The Department of Aging & Human Services was approved to receive the remainder of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) COVID-19 Round 2-Emergency award for $625,000.

A property acquisition request from the Department of Public Works & Transportation for a parcel of land affected by FDR Boulevard Phase 3B construction was approved.

The Department of Public Works & Transportation also received approval for a budget amendment request to receive a $59,000 grant from the Secretary of Transportation for St. Mary’s County Regional Airport.

Authorization was granted for a Memorandum of Understanding between the Commissioners of St. Mary’s County, through the Department of Recreation and Parks Museum Division and the Friends of the St. Clements Island and Piney Point Museums outlining responsibilities for support services for the Museum Division.

The Commissioners approved a request to apply for the Childcare Stabilization Fund Grant Award, from the Maryland State Department of Education, for $77,090 to support the Department of Recreation and Parks School Age Care Centers for after-school programs for elementary age students.

The Department of Human Resources presented the annual update and proposed changes for the Manual of Personnel Policies and Procedures and received Commissioner approval for implementation.

The Commissioners will convene at 6:30 p.m. for their first quarter Public Forum.
The Commissioners next business meeting will be at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2022, in the Chesapeake Building; there will be no Commissioner Meeting Jan. 18, 2022. Commissioner decisions and related public documents are available on the county government website in BoardDocs. Commissioner Meetings may be viewed live Tuesday mornings on SMCG Channel 95 or as a replay Friday nights at 6:30 p.m. Meetings are also available for on-demand viewing on the St. Mary’s County Government YouTube Channel.