SMECO warns to prepare for potential outages this weekend
With the potential heavy rains and high winds facing Southern Maryland this weekend, area residents are urged to take steps to prepare for possible weather-related power outages. Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative (SMECO) is monitoring weather forecasts, and co-op crews are prepared to restore power if outages occur.
According to SMECO spokesman Tom Dennison, “Whenever weather systems are expected in our area, SMECO personnel prepare to respond to outages that may result from falling trees and flooding. If customers need to report a power outage, they can call 1-877-74-SMECO (1-877747-6326). They can also go online to our website, www.smeco.coop, or use SMECO’s text messaging service. The SMECO 24/7 free mobile app will allow customers to report an outage, view our outage map, or make a payment. We encourage customers to download the app or register for the texting service before bad weather hits.”
Customer-members can get more information about the app and text messaging service on SMECO’s website at smeco.coop/SMECO247.
SMECO’s outage restoration policy is to make repairs that will restore service to the most people in the least amount of time. Transmission lines and substations are repaired first, followed by distribution lines that feed neighborhoods. Tap lines and individual service lines are then repaired to restore power to customers who may still be without electricity.
The following is a list of helpful tips for customers:
• If someone in your household depends on electricity to operate life support systems, make plans for alternate sources of power or alternate lodging.
• If you plan to use a portable generator, use extension cords to connect what you want to power directly to the generator. Place your generator outside, not in an attic, crawl space, or basement. Carbon monoxide poisoning is deadly. Make sure your generator is connected safely; a generator that is not connected safely can cause serious injury or death. When your power comes back on, turn off and disconnect your generator immediately.
• Keep flashlights and fresh batteries on hand. Lanterns and candles are not recommended because they can cause fires.
• Never touch downed power lines or attempt to remove trees from power lines. Contact with live lines may result in serious injury or death. Let qualified SMECO crews handle the clearing and repair work. Please report downed power lines to SMECO immediately by calling 1-888-4403311.
• Stock nonperishable foods and keep a manual can opener handy. The ideal choices are foods that require no cooking, such as fruit, canned tuna, peanut butter, crackers, cereals, cereal bars, canned soup, and bread.
• Do not stock your refrigerator or freezer with foods that may perish during a power outage.
• If you plan to use a charcoal or gas grill for cooking, keep the grill outdoors.
• If your water at home is supplied by a well, store extra water in clean jugs, bathtubs, or laundry tubs.
• Keep a battery-powered radio with fresh batteries and stay tuned to local news bulletins and weather reports.
• Make sure that you have a standard phone available. Cordless phones do not work without electricity. If you use a cell phone, an auto adapter may be needed to recharge your phone.
• Keep your automobile gas tank above half full.
• Keep fresh batteries in your smoke detectors.
• Open the freezer and refrigerator as little as possible. This will help food stay fresh longer.
• Make sure the oven and stove are off to prevent fires if the power comes back on while you’re away.
Tri-County Animal Shelter to host September events
September will be Happy Cat Month at the Tri-County Animal Shelter in Hughesville. From Thursday, Sept. 1, through Friday, Sept. 30, the shelter will lower cat adoption fees to $10 and kitten fees to $25. Those who cannot adopt may consider donating bought or homemade toys or treats for the kitties.
The shelter will be closed for training on Saturday, Sept. 10.
National Rock and Roll Dog Day will be Thursday, Sept. 22. Dog adoption fees will be reduced to $100 on this day.
The Tri-County Animal Shelter is located at 6707 Animal Shelter Road in Hughesville. Adoption hours are Monday-Friday, noon to 5 p.m. and Saturday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. To view animals available for adoption, go to www. CharlesCountyMD.gov/ es/animalshelter/tri-county-animal-shelter or www.
petfinder.com/shelters/MD112.html. Citizens with special needs may contact the Maryland Relay Service at 711, or Relay Service TDD: 800-7352258.
CSM to observe Labor Day holiday
The College of Southern Maryland will be closed Saturday, Sept. 3, through Monday, Sept. 5, in observance of Labor Day. The college will resume its normal schedule Sept. 6.
Registration for credit or non-credit courses is available throughout the Labor Day weekend online at my.csmd.edu. Classes for the fall 10-week session begin Oct. 3. Classes for the seven-week fall minisession II begin Monday, Oct. 24.
Commissioners announce vacancies
The Charles County Commissioners are seeking county residents to fill vacancies on the following boards, committees and commissions:
• Adult Public Guardianship Review Board
• Agricultural Land Preservation Advisory Board
• Alarm Review Board
• Animal Matters Hearing Board
• Board of Social Services
• Business Development Loan Fund for Women, Minorities, and Veterans (formerly Disadvantaged Business Loan Review Committee)
• Economic Development Advisory Board
• Heritage Commission
• Local Government Justice Reinvestment Commission
• Planning Commission There is one vacancy on the Business Development Loan Fund for Women, Minorities, and Veterans Committee for a small business owner. This committee serves as an advisory review body for the purpose of reviewing and approving loans to eligible businesses under the procedures of the Disadvantaged Loan Fund.
There are 10 vacancies on the newly formed Economic Development Advisory Board for individuals with experience or expertise in one of the following areas: Charles County Public Schools, College of Southern Maryland, Naval Installation at Indian Head and owner or corporate level manager of a Charles County business that targets specific areas which can be found at www.CharlesCountyMD.gov. This advisory board will provide input and feedback on economic development programs, policies and initiatives, as well as feedback or recommendations to the board of commissioners as they relate to policy issues affecting economic development.
There is one vacancy on the governor’s newly formed Local Government Justice Reinvestment Commission. This commission is charged with advising the Justice Reinvestment Oversight Board on matters relating to implementing the act, making recommendations regarding certain grants to local governments and creating performance measures to assess the effectiveness of the grants made to local governments.
There will be one vacancy on the Planning Commission as of Dec. 31. The commission is involved in the drafting and implementation of the comprehensive plan, makes recommendations on rezoning requests and is the approval authority for subdivision of property in the county.
Positions will remain open until filled. A separate application must be submitted for each vacancy. Applications and a detailed list of all current vacancies are available on the Charles County Government website at www.CharlesCountyMD.gov or by contacting Carol DeSoto, commissioner specialist, at 301645-0691 or DesotoC@CharlesCountyMD.gov.
HR professionals to focus on workplace diversity
The Human Resources Association of Southern Maryland (HRASM) will meet 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Sept. 21 at Hilton Garden Inn Solomons, 13100 Dowell Road, Dowell. Melvin Brown II will provide participants with a workplace diversity presentation, focusing on hiring the right people for the right job with the right skills.
The meeting is open to anyone with an interest in human resources issues. The cost is $25 for members and $30 for non-members, which includes lunch. Registration begins at 11 a.m. Deadline for registering is noon on Sept. 19. To register, go to: http://hrasmonline.shrm.org/. Once registered, payment is required if a cancellation is made after the deadline date. This meeting has been approved for one HR general recertification credits toward PHR, SPHR and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute. As a SHRM Preferred Provider, this meeting is preapproved for one recertification credit for our recertifying professionals of the SHRM-CP or the SHRM-SCP credential.
For more information, go to http://hrasmonline.shrm.org.