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Olszewski announces $11.5 million in funding for BCPS, expands support for restaurants

Posted at 10:41 AM, Nov 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-10 07:33:24-05

BALTIMORE COUNTY — Due to a COVID-19 surge, Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski provided an update on the County’s ongoing response to the pandemic.

He also announced new support for public schools as they prepare for a safe return to in-person instruction, and provided details on the County’s latest efforts to expand direct relief for restaurants.

The County will continue enforcement of state and local mask and social distancing requirements at bars, restaurants and retail establishments. To date, the County’s Social Distancing Task Force has conducted approximately 5,200 inspections of establishments – both pro-active and complaint driven.

However, Olszewski reminded residents that family and social gatherings also pose significant virus transmission risk.

Ahead of upcoming holidays, individuals are encouraged to avoid large gatherings, particularly gatherings that take place indoors.

Olszewski also committed $11.5 million in CARES Act funding to provide supplies directly to Baltimore County Public School principals to help them prepare for eventual reopening.

The County will leverage existing supplier relationships to secure and distribute personal protective equipment, cleaning and sanitizing products, air purifiers, and other equipment or supplies that will help ensure that school buildings are safe for students, educators and staff.

Principals will be able to acquire supplies directly from the county, up to $100 per student.

Olszewski announced new plans as well to complement Baltimore County’s existing restaurant grants using additional funds provided by the state.

The County will distribute these Restaurant and Food Service Grants in two phases.

In the first phase, restaurants who have already received grants through the County – which were available up to $15,000 – will receive an additional $15,000 state-match to enhance their efforts to keep patrons and staff safe.

Eligible restaurants will be contacted directly by the County’s Department of Economic and Workforce Development in the coming days.

The second phase will make grants of up to $30,000 available for restaurants that have not yet received previous grant funding from the County. Applications for these Restaurant and Food Service Grants will begin on Monday, November 16 at 9 a.m.

An application portal for these Restaurant and Food Service Grants will be available in the coming days and funds will be available on the Department of Economic and Workforce Development webpage.