The following was reported out via email on the most recent Ball Bulletin:

Dear Friends,

We are beginning to see a consistent increase of positive COVID-19 cases and a concerning trend of hospitalization increases in Howard County. As of 9:00 a.m. this morning and according to the Maryland Department of Health, our positivity rate is at 2.95% and our cases per 100,000 of our population is at 9.30. Last week, these numbers were 2.78% and 8.90 respectively. In addition, we currently have 16 COVID-19 patients in our ICU and Acute Care units.

I understand that many residents are feeling quarantine fatigue. However, we need all residents to remain vigilant. Face coverings, washing hands and physical distancing are our most powerful weapons to slow and stop the spread of COVID-19.

Although we have administered a total of 184,486 tests and the percent of population tested is 33.3%, it’s imperative that residents continue getting tested if you have been around or are concerned about a possible COVID-19 exposure. Robust testing procedures help us better mitigate any further spread. For more information, please visit HChealth.org.

We all have a responsibility to do all we can to reverse these concerning trends.

For more data and COVID-19 information, please click here.

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Other information in the bulletin related to COVID-19 include:

Thanksgiving Guidance

As more people spend time indoors with approaching cooler weather, we must remain vigilant against the spread of the virus. This year is full of firsts, and hopefully lasts, when it comes to how we celebrate holidays.

Please avoid large family gatherings this Thanksgiving, and instead celebrate with those within your immediate family. Our ability to prevent large outbreaks this winter hinges on adhering to the recommendations from institutions like the CDC and public health officials.

If we all work together – even when we’re apart – we can avoid COVID-19 surges in Howard County and keep one another safe.

To read the CDC’s guidance, please click here.


Eviction Support

There is an immediate need for legal assistance to support tenants in demonstrating substantial loss of income-related to COVID-19. At the recommendation of Attorney General Brian Frosh’s Access to Justice COVID-19 task force, Howard County has provided funding for Maryland Legal Aid to assist residents facing eviction and other legal challenges exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

We’ve seen more than 46,000 residents file for unemployment since March, and there are many of our neighbors who are unable to afford private attorney assistance on top of their daily needs.

Read more here.


Rental Assistance

The longer this pandemic stretches on, the more urgent rental and eviction relief becomes. With more than 23,000 renters in the county, and more than 46,000 residents who have filed for unemployment, we are doing all that we can to keep people safely housed.

A second round of HoCo RISE rental assistance funding is currently available, providing an additional $800,000 in CARES Act funds to support residents struggling to pay rent due to the pandemic. As we continue to battle this virus, we must deliver the necessary relief and services to make sure no one falls through the cracks.

For more information, please click here.

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Scott E

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