News Release, Charles County Public Information Office

On Tuesday, May 21, the Board of Commissioners received a briefing and introduction of a request for a zoning text amendment to allow the operation of permanent shelters in the General Industrial Zone. The request, submitted by Lifestyles of Maryland Foundation, Inc., would allow the organization to pursue additional steps toward opening a permanent homeless shelter in White Plains. A public hearing date is set for Tuesday, June 18, at 6 p.m.

Open Session Briefings

Commissioners received a briefing from the Planning Division on the county’s shoreline assessment and management plan. The assessment reviews much of the county’s 183 miles of shoreline to identify and prioritize areas for restoration. This plan identifies opportunities for implementation of shoreline restoration projects and is an efficient method to meet requirements of the county’s stormwater permit. The report prioritized 153 sites and 27 miles of shoreline for restoration based upon erosion rates, proximity to agricultural or residential sites, with a combination of sill systems and living shorelines as the primary method for restoration. The report will enable the county to be considered for state and federal grants, determine future restoration programs, provide a model for other counties to follow, and share information with the public.

Economic Development Department Director Darréll Brown and Department of Planning and Growth Management Director Steve Kaii-Ziegler updated Commissioners on school seat allocations within opportunity zones designed in the county. Staff consulted with Superintendent Dr. Kimberly A. Hill, her executive team, and the Board of Education to consider alternatives to the current school seat allocation policy. Staff requested additional time to develop preferred options for the Commissioners’ consideration prior to Aug. 1.

Chief Executive Officer Brandon L. Jones presented Commissioners with an update on Hospice of Charles County, which provides terminally ill residents and their families with support for routine, inpatient, and respite care. They provide patients with care in their homes, at extended care facilities, and at the Hospice House. He highlighted some common myths about hospice care and shared facts about the variety of ways it serves families and provides patient care. For more information about hospice services,

Dr. Suzan Lowry, the health officer for Charles County, presented a semi-annual update on the Charles County Health Department. She reviewed the department’s programs and services, and shared data on indicators assessing the health and well-being of residents. Dr. Lowry discussed strategies for improving public health and highlighted the department’s efforts to address public health priorities. 

Internal Auditor John Simpson briefed Commissioners on the work of the Internal Audit Oversight Committee. The committee is charged with reviewing the annual audit plan and internal audit reports, making recommendations, and ensuring there are no unjustified restrictions or limitations on the Internal Audit Office.

Approval Items

Commissioners approved the following budget requests:

Commissioners approved memorandums of understanding with the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments to pay a portion of the costs for the following programs:

Commissioners also approved a revised summer schedule to meet every two weeks in June and July.


  • Commissioners presented a proclamation to the county’s Emergency Medical Services staff and volunteers in recognition of May 19 – 25, 2019 as Emergency Medical Services Week. View photo in Flickr.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...