Coronavirus Updates: County Executive Ball Extends Deadlines for Licenses, Permits, and Registrations 
Additional Closures of County Property 

County Executive Calvin Ball signed an Executive Order that extends the deadline for licenses, permits, registrations, and other authorizations issued by Howard County. Deadlines are extended for 30 days after the Maryland State of Emergency by the Governor is terminated.  

“We must all work together during this public health emergency, and that includes providing extended deadlines for things like license and permits,” said County Executive Calvin Ball. “Things are moving very quickly, and we’re going to continue to do what we can to make sure our policies align with the new realities we’re facing.”  

Additional closures from County departments were released this afternoon. The Department of Recreation and Parks has cancelled all large events, gatherings, and weddings and any programs that include 50 or more people through May 11, 2020. Worthington Dog park has also been closed through March 29th. Additionally, Wine in the Woods, which was scheduled for May 16-17 has been cancelled.  

The Department of Community Resources and Services tax preparation program will be postponed until the end of March and reassessed for new scheduling. Additionally, The Loan Closet is closed for equipment donations, if you have an equipment need, please call 410-313-0363. The onsite lunch program at the 50+ centers has been suspended, if you need meal services or have concern about food availability please contact MAP at 310-313-1234 or through map@howardcountymd.gov. 

Furthermore, four local philanthropies have announced new emergency funds and actions to support community members affected by COVID-19. The Community Foundation of Howard County, Horizon Foundation, United Way of Central Maryland and Women’s Giving Circle of Howard County are working together to assess where assistance may be needed, provide funding, and accept donations to assist Howard County nonprofits on the front line of support, focusing on assisting with food security, housing, childcare and healthcare.  

The Howard County Library is closed through March 29th, but has significant eContent available online, including e-books and e-audiobooks; streaming TV, movies, and music; online classes; and digital subscriptions to newspapers and magazines. All you need is your library card and PIN. If you don’t yet have a library card, apply online and use your temporary number. And don’t forget to take the 2020 Census! It’s all available at hclibrary.org 24/7. 

Current and Updated Measures: 

  • County Executive Ball signed an Executive Order to extend the deadline for all licenses, permits, registrations, and other authorizations issued by Howard County for 30 days after the Maryland State of Emergency ends.  
  • The Governor issued an Executive Order to close all bars, restaurants, movie theaters, and gyms at 5 p.m. on 3/16/20. Carryout and delivery service is allowed. Additionally, there is a strict ban on gatherings of more than 50 people at all venues and locations per CDC recommendations. He has prohibited all utilities from shutting off any residential customers and is prohibiting any evictions.   
  • The Maryland Health Connection opened a new Special Enrollment Period to uninsured Marylanders who need health coverage during the State of Emergency for Coronavirus (COVID-19)  
  • The Department of Social Services tools are accessible online or by phone: Apply for SNAP (Food Stamps or Cash Assistance),apply for medical assistance and health insurance, and long-term care. Or call 1-800-332-6347 and request a paper application and mail, email or fax to local office. Email: Howco.dss@maryland.gov. Fax 410-872-4231.Residents can submit any required documentation via the MYDHR portal or via email: Child support: hoco.child_support@maryland.gov;  FIA: fia.hoco@maryland.gov. Check MYDHR account for case updates.  Contact the call center at 1-800-332-6347 Monday-Friday 8:30- 5:00, call 410-872-8700, or Email Howco.dss@maryland.gov 
  • Howard County is under a State of Emergency. 
  • County Executive Ball directed the Mall in Columbia to close at midnight 3/15/20 for at least seven days.  
  • The Shops at Savage Mill, and two movie theaters, Regal Snowden Square and AMC Columbia, were also instructed to close at midnight 3/15/20 for at least seven days.   
  • All County employees that are able were instructed to telework as of Monday, March 16th until further notice. All out-of-state official travel for County employees has been canceled through April 24.   
  • All Howard County Government gatherings, events, and meetings that attract one of the high-risk populations were canceled or rescheduled for March 12 – April 26, to be reassessed as new developments arise.   
  • Howard County Government issued public guidance regarding canceling or postponing meetings, events, and gatherings.  
  • Howard County Sheriff has stayed all evictions for March 13 – March 28, to be reevaluated with new developments.   
  • All Howard County Public Schools are closed from March 14 – March 27.  
  • All Howard County Libraries are closed from March 16 – March 27.  
  • Howard Community College is closed for spring break March 15-22. All noncredit and credit classes are canceled March 23-29.  
  • All 50+ Centersare closed from March 13th until further notice.  
  • All 50+ centers programs, activities and events are canceled until further notice.  
  • All indoor recreation facilities are closed from March 13 – March 27.  
  • All Department of Recreation and Parks programs, classes, league play, and events are canceled from March 13 – 29, to be reevaluated on March 30th.  
  • The Department of Recreation and Parks has cancelled all large events, gatherings, and weddings and any programs that include 50 or more people through May 11, 2020.  
  • Wine in the Woods, which was scheduled for May 16-17 has been cancelled. 

The above information is rapidly evolving, to stay informed on coronavirus updates, please follow social media for the Center for Disease Control, the Maryland Department of Health, the Howard County Health Department, the Howard County Government, and Howard County Executive Calvin Ball. Email updates are also available by subscribing to the Ball Bulletin. 

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Scott E