Community Connections Newsletter

Prince George\’s Proud:

An Update From County Executive Alsobrooks

Dear Prince Georgians:

We have officially entered a new year, and we are so excited to continue our great work of moving our County forward. Our goal is to continue to ensure the best quality of life for all of our residents. We know that we have so much to look forward to this year, but we also recognize that we must continue to work together and support one another in order to accomplish great things.

As we begin the new year, we are proud to recognize January as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. Throughout this month, we join the nation in bringing awareness to human trafficking and the devastating impact it can have on communities across the country.

Our Office of Human Rights and Department of Family Services both work to provide various programs and resources that aim to educate Prince Georgians on human trafficking and provide information on how we can all work to prevent this from taking place in our County. We are committed to ensuring that our County is a safe place for all.

To learn more about the County’s human trafficking resources and programs, we encourage you to visit the County website here.

Yours in service,

Angela Alsobrooks
Prince George’s County Executive

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Beautification Initiatives

Illegal Dumping is a Crime
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Illegally dumping trash is a crime! Residents should contact PGC311 to schedule a pickup for items that are not collected in your regular curbside collection. To learn more information or schedule an appointment, visit the PGC311 website here.

County News For You
Department of Social Services’ Temple Hills Location Closed Until Further Notice

Effective Tuesday, December 27, 2022, Prince George’s County Department of Social Services (DSS) in Temple Hills (4235 28th Avenue, Temple Hills, MD 20748) closed due to water related issues as a result of December’s extreme temperatures.
All operations and services continue uninterrupted for customers. Local customers in need of services are able to access information and apply for benefits online on the State of Maryland website here or visit in-person at one of the additional locations including:
425 Brightseat Road
Landover, MD 20785
6505 Belcrest Road
Hyattsville, MD 20782
DSS is seeking a temporary alternative location in the Temple Hills community and will notify customers of the new location once it has been identified. For more information on the office closure, residents may contact Verlinda Darden at verlinda.darden@maryland.gov.

2022 Customer Service Excellence Awards
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On Thursday, December 15, 2022, the Department of Social Services (DSS) leadership and recipients of this year\’s Customer Service Excellence Appreciation Awards gathered at Busboys and Poets in Hyattsville to celebrate \”the display of quality customer service at every interaction.\”
The Customer Service Award is for staff who have gone above and beyond to demonstrate outstanding customer experiences for customers, consistently display a strong commitment to excellence, perform their duties with competence, integrity, compassion, and adhere to the practices and procedures consistent with the DSS mission and vision. These individuals are the best of the best customer service professionals.
Join the entire DSS family in celebrating their success! Recipient names are listed below.
Alicia Alfred 
Anthony Alston 
Melva Carty 
Cecilia Esonge 
Nicholas Forde 
Jason Foreman 
Renee Holder 
Archelia Johnston-Taylor 
Anani Koudouovoh 
Shaundra Love 
Canessa Marshall 
Carrie Matthews-Brown 
Wilhelmena Mcfield 
Atiya Mitchell 
Nessa Moghadam 
Esther Mutama 
Enimien Omon Ayewoh 
Kydra Penn 
Shanice Randall 
Mayra Ruiz 
JoAnn Turner 
Joy Wright

2022 DSS Holiday Sharing Initiative
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The Department of Social Services (DSS), in partnership with 34 generous community donors, provided meals and gifts to 347 households, or 1,223 residents, during this holiday season.

2023 Prince George’s Health Connect Open Enrollment
\"PGCOpen enrollment for Prince George’s County Health Connect ends on January 15, 2023. For coverage beginning on February 1, 2023, enroll by January 15, 2023. Coverage is for private health plans only.
Residents who are eligible can apply for Medicaid any time of year. Residents who are already enrolled will receive a notice before your benefits end. If you are in need of assistance, use the Get an Estimate tool to get started and see what you will pay for a private health plan.
For more information call the PGC Call Center at 301-927-4500 or 240-719-2167, Monday through Friday (weekend and evening hours are also available), or visit the PGC Health Connect webpage here.
LET’S GET COVERED. GET SEEN. GET HEALTHY.


Resource Parent and Foster Youth Holiday Celebration
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On Saturday, December 10, 2022, the Department of Social Services’ Placement, Compliance and Support unit, in partnership with Ready by 21 and the Prince George\’s Resource Parent Association, held its annual Resource Parent and Foster Youth Holiday Celebration.
Hosted at Thomas Pullen Creative and Performing Arts School, this year\’s event theme was \”Winter Carnival,” and included carnival games, a photo booth, storytelling, a food truck, and a gaming truck equipped with video games.
Santa also made an appearance and kids, from newborn to 21-years-old, were treated to gifts and stuffed Christmas stockings from area partners. Check out this video recapping the event to experience the excitement.

Marlow Heights Community Center Meeting
\"MarlowJoin the Prince George’s County Department of Parks and Recreation for a virtual community meeting on Thursday, January 12, 2023, from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM, as they unveil the plans for the new Marlow Heights Community Center. Residents interested in participating must RSVP to receive the link to join the meeting. To RSVP for the virtual community meeting, visit the Parks and Recreation website here.

Register for the Wizards Winter Reading Challenge with PGCMLS
\"PGCMLSThe Washington Wizards and Prince George’s County Memorial Library System (PGCMLS) have teamed up for the third consecutive year to get Prince Georgians of all ages reading this winter with the Wizards Winter Reading Challenge. The free challenge, which includes opportunities to earn prizes, including tickets to a Wizards game, runs now through March 31, 2023. For each activity completed, participants can earn points toward challenge badges in four activity categories: reading, fitness fun, program attendance, and connect and share. Those who complete the challenge will be eligible for a variety of prizes, including a raffle entry for tickets to the Wizards’ home game versus the Houston Rockets on Sunday, April 9, 2023. Residents looking to join the Wizards Winter Reading Challenge can register on the PGCMLS website here. Check out this video from the Washington Wizards inviting residents to join the challenge.

2022 Winter Coat Celebration
\"OCRThe Office of Community Relations (OCR), in partnership with Enterprise Holdings Inc. and The Top Ladies of Distinction, hosted its annual Winter Coat Distribution at Magnolia Elementary School in Lanham on Friday, December 16, 2022. This year, Director Euniesha Davis had a vision to have a greater impact on the community through the OCR Winter Coat Celebration. With the support of sponsors, OCR was able to ensure that all 429 students at Magnolia Elementary School were prepared with winter essentials during the winter months, including a winter coat and a winter hat. Every student was extremely excited to receive these items for the winter season.

OCR Celebrates 1st Annual Dereck Davis Day 
of Service

\"OCRThe Office of Community Relations (OCR) dedicated its 1st Annual Dereck Davis Day of Service to delivering resources and providing assistance to the residents of the Transition Center at Prince George’s House and PGCPS students who are members of Junior Achievement. During the event, The Honorable Dereck Davis, who now serves as the Maryland State Treasurer, joined the OCR team and provided words of inspiration, breakfast, and a bag of personable items for each resident of the Transition Center. Team members of Employ Prince George’s also joined this effort by providing information that will assist residents with employment services.
In addition, the team volunteered at Junior Achievement Prince George’s where Treasurer Davis offered words of wisdom regarding money matters to Junior Achievement participants. The presentation was followed by OCR team members who assisted participants with developing and managing budgets. At the close of the volunteer effort, OCR gift bags were distributed to each student.

Common Ownership Communities: 
HOA Reserve Study

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The Office of Community Relations, Commission on Common Ownership Communities recently conducted its monthly meeting around a Reserve Study discussion. The purpose of a Reserve Study is to protect property value. A Reserve Study will provide an analysis of funding reserves required for future major repairs and replacement for common elements such as roofs, pavement, or other components that are the responsibility of the community association. Mr. Marvin E. Holmes, Commissioner and Delegate for Legislative District 23, Mr. Peter Miller, Capital Reserve Consultant of Miller Dodson, and various subject matter experts served as guest speakers. Commission Chair Timothy Smith, Vice-Chair Nicole Williams, Esq., and Commissioner Karen Straughn joined Mr. Miller to present on the Reserve Study. For more information regarding the HOA Reserve Studies or the Commission on Common Ownership Communities, please contact Ms. Ynetta Butchee, Community Liaison, at ydbutchee@co.pg.md.us.

Week of Wishes
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The Office of Community Relations’ (OCR) Week of Wishes (WOW) was a concept created by OCR’s 2022 Summer Youth Enrichment Program participants that positively impacted the lives of educators and students. Through this initiative, OCR supported high schools throughout Prince George’s County. At each school, students were randomly selected to receive laptops. In addition, several educators at each of the schools received Amazon tablets, along with gym, smoothie, and dinner vouchers. OCR was able to “WOW” every individual who participated in this effort and was truly amazed to see how grateful they were for what they received entering the holiday season. Seeing the faces of gratitude from students and educators “WOWed” the OCR team in return.

Dyer Center Community Conversation
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On Thursday, December 22, 2022, the Office of Community Relations (OCR) hosted its first community conversation regarding the Dyer Care Center. The Dyer Care Center is a new crisis stabilization center that is tentatively scheduled to open in Clinton in July 2023. This meeting served as an open and honest conversation with residents of the Dyer community. During the conversation, OCR Director Euniesha Davis, Ms. Erica Berry Wilson, Chief of Staff for the Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for Health, Human Services, and Education, and various community partners presented pertinent information to the community. Mr. Carlos Mackall also provided the community with important material from Totally Linking Care of Maryland and RI International. The community heard from County officials on an overview and benefits of the center, services to help the community, and a timeline of the expected opening day. In addition, community members posed great questions about the crisis stabilization center coming into their area.
OCR will host a follow-up meeting to discuss a community strategy and safety plan. OCR’s mission is to be visible, accessible, and accountable to all residents of this diverse County, and by hosting these bi-monthly community conversations, the agency is doing just that. OCR would like to thank their community partners for working with them to ensure the first community conversation was a success.

PGCPS Recruitment Event
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Are you looking for a job in Prince George\’s County Public Schools (PGCPS)? Join PGCPS on Saturday, January 7, 2023, from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM at Dr. Henry A. Wise Jr. High School to learn more about school-based employment opportunities for teachers, substitute teachers, paraprofessionals, aides, and school secretaries! Register online here to attend.

No Changes to Waste Collection Services Due to MLK Jr. Holiday
\"DoECounty government offices, with the exception of public safety agencies, will be closed on Monday, January 16, 2023, in observance of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.
Curbside collection of yard trim, food scraps, trash, and recycling will remain on regular schedule for residents receiving County provided services. There are NO changes due to the holiday. For more information on waste collection services, visit the Department of the Environment’s website here.
For more information on County services that are suspended, visit the County website here.

Recycle Your Christmas Tree
\"DoE

The Department of the Environment makes it easy for residents to recycle cut Christmas trees (no artificial trees) by offering a convenient drop-off location and curbside pickup.
Christmas tree collection will run until Monday, January 30, 2023. Residents with yard trim collection may place their undecorated, unbagged, live Christmas trees at the curb by 6:00 AM on their regularly scheduled yard trim collection day.
For more information, please call PGC311 or visit the Department of the Environment’s website here.

Recycling Holiday String Lights and Electronics
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Getting rid of unique items like holiday decorations and electronics can be confusing, but luckily these items are easy to recycle in Prince George’s County. Bring holiday string lights to be recycled at the County’s Household Hazardous Waste Acceptance site in Upper Marlboro until Saturday, February 4, 2023, or check with local hardware stores. While some electronic retailers recycle string lights, most do not so remember to confirm before simply dropping them off; otherwise, it’s trash.

Waste Diversion and Recycling Nominations Deadline Extended
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The deadline has been extended to nominate a County individual, business, nonprofit, school, or organization for a Waste Diversion and Recycling Award. The award recognizes nominees going above and beyond to promote the importance of recycling and other innovative ways to help divert waste from being trashed in Prince George’s County.
Submit nomination forms and supporting documents by midnight, Monday, January 9, 2023. For more information, visit the Department of the Environment’s website here.

Construction of Anacostia River Watershed Restoration Project to Begin
\"Anacostia

On Thursday, December 15, 2022, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Baltimore District, and Prince George’s County Department of the Environment (DoE) signed a Project Partnership Agreement (PPA) for the Anacostia Watershed Restoration project. The PPA will work to restore seven miles of instream habitat, four miles for fish passage, and connect 14 miles of stream in the Anacostia River watershed within Prince George’s County, which has suffered from years of environmental neglect. Read the full press release and find out more about the partnership here.  

Installation of Solar Carports at County Buildings
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Through a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), the Sustainable Energy team within the Department of the Environment, Sustainability Division, and the Office of Central Services will collaborate with Constellation Energy Corp. to install millions of dollars of solar carport equipment at no cost to the County. These solar projects have been developed for five locations at Prince George\’s County government offices along Basil Court, McCormick Drive, and Peppercorn Place in Largo.
Having onsite power generation reduces the County’s dependence on outside power sources. The photovoltaic (PV) arrays represent the County’s commitment to using green technology to reduce its use of traditional carbon-intensive power generation. The agreement with Constellation provides 30 years of coverage of the footprint of the solar systems and access for construction, maintenance, and repairs. The PV systems will generate approximately 6,000,000 kWh of power annually and will be provided to the County free of charge for the first 15 years of the agreement. This includes energy generated from the first solar carport system installed in Prince George\’s County in 2017 at the Wayne K. Curry County Administration Building, also located in Largo.
Solar carports are ground-mounted solar panels installed above parking lots to form a carport. In addition to the benefits of producing clean energy, solar carports provide shade and protection to vehicles below and can reduce parking lot maintenance costs. Construction of these projects is already underway and anticipated to continue through Fall 2023.

Let’s Grow A Brighter Future!
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Eligible for curbside composting with PGC Composts? Make your New Year’s resolution now! Divert valuable materials from the landfill and protect our environment every Monday. To learn how, visit the Department of the Environment’s website here.

Wanna Be Greener in 2023?
\"WantAre you looking for a New Year’s resolution? Consider adopting a new green habit! Just one small change can make a big impact. For ideas, visit the Part of It, Proud of It website here.

DPIE to Host Virtual Seminar to Help Residents Access Information
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DPIE hosts virtual Third-Thursday Community Information Sessions on the third Thursday of each month, from 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM, on Zoom. Each session focuses on a particular topic of interest to residents and includes a brief presentation, comments by agency experts and a Q&A period to allow residents to speak directly to leadership and staff.
The next seminar is scheduled for Thursday, January 19 with the topic “Accessing Information from DPIE.” Staff will share information about documents that are available to the public and tips about how to access everything from brochures and flyers to copies of permits, plans and violation notices. 
Register for the sessions here. Submit questions in advance to dpiepio@co.pg.md.us


Spotlight On Prince George\’s 
The Sovren Set To Open Fall 2024
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The Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) is supporting an investment from Amazon and Gilbane Development Company that will bring even more affordable housing to Prince George’s County. The Sovren will be a 293-unit apartment complex that will be located adjacent to the West Hyattsville Metro station. Half of the apartments, or 147 units, will be restricted affordable housing and reserved for tenants whose income is 80% of the area medium income (AMI), and will remain affordable for 99 years. Through the public-private partnership, DHCD and the County Council approved a Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILOT) and $200,000 from the County’s Housing Investment Trust Fund (HITF) for the project in July 2022. The new apartment building is slated for completion in the Fall of 2024. Check out this article to learn more about the project.

Prince George’s County Police Officers Win National Award
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Photo Courtesy of ABC7

Prince George’s County Police Department Corporal Phillip Zonn and Officer First Class Geobani Guerra are being recognized nationally for their swift actions to save a motorist’s life on the beltway. We want to thank Corporal Zonn and Officer First Class Guerra for their continued and dedicated service to Prince Georgians. Check out this article to learn more about the award.

Curbside Composting
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Photo Courtesy of WUSA9

Director Andrea Crooms, who leads the Department of Environment, teaches residents how easy it is to curbside compost and make a big difference in our environment! Check out this video to learn more about how to compost.

COVID-19 Updates
COVID-19 Vaccination Update 
Vaccine Supply & Administration
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The County Health Department has provided over 228,000 vaccinations, including more than 29,700 additional doses to those fully vaccinated.
The County Health Department provided 363 vaccinations at the Cheverly Health Center and Maternal/Child Health Center at Laurel in the month of December.
Our mobile units have provided 98 vaccinations in the community in the month of December, focusing on homebound and senior residents.
More than 19,300 primary-series vaccinations have been provided to children ages 5 to 11 years since the vaccine became available for that age group in November 2021.
Approximately 470 vaccinations have been provided to children under the age of 5 since the vaccine became available for that age group in June 2022.

Vaccination Locations
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The County Health Department no longer operates a standing mass vaccination clinic. The COVID-19 vaccine is available through the County’s mobile vaccination units or at the Cheverly Health Center and Maternal/Child Health Center at Laurel, by appointment only. There are a number of vaccination sites available in Prince George’s County that are not operated by the County. Please remember that we neither manage nor control appointments or distribution for any locations not operated by the County Health Department. 

Prince George’s County Health Department
Cheverly Health Center and Maternal/Child Health Center at Laurel: To schedule an appointment, individuals should visit the County Health Department website here.
Mobile Vaccination UnitsThe County’s mobile vaccination units are typically reserved for homebound residents and other high-risk residents who require assistance in getting access to the vaccine. Individuals who are interested in our mobile vaccination units should call PGC311 and press # for assistance.
Additional Non-County Operated Sites
Please use our County Vaccine Locator to find additional vaccination sites operated by pharmacies, hospitals, and other healthcare partners.
Progress Toward Vaccination Goals
\"covidOver 1,938,300 vaccinations have been provided to 744,220 County residents, including 633,427 second doses and 564,796 additional doses.
As of January 3, the CDC is reporting 95% of adults ages 18 and older have received at least one vaccination in the County, and 88% are fully vaccinated.
When including all residents ages 5 and older, 95% of residents have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and 84.1% are fully vaccinated.
The CDC reports 20.3% of residents ages 18 and older who are fully vaccinated have received a bivalent booster dose as of January 3.
Approximately 3.7% of County residents ages 6 months to 4 years, 36.5% of County residents ages 5 to 9 years, and 66.5% of County residents ages 10 to 19 years are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
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