January 18, 2018
First State of Healthcare in Howard County a Huge Success

This morning we held our first ever State of Healthcare in Howard County member lunch, and it was a great opportunity for everyone in the packed ballroom to learn about the healthcare challenges Howard County currently faces, as well as plans for the future.

Our panel of distinguished healthcare industry leaders including Steve Snelgrove, President of Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine, Dr. Maura Rossman, Health Officer for the Howard County Health Department, Dr. William Saway, Internist with Columbia Medical Practice and Elizabeth Kromm, Ph.D., Vice President of Population Health at HCGH answered questions from moderator Paul Skalny, Esq., Managing Partner of Davis, Agnor, Rapaport & Skalny, LLC and Chair of the HCGH Board of Trustees on a wide range of issues.
Skalny began by asking each of the panelists to describe their vision for the future of Howard County's Healthcare System. The theme that came up again and again was partnership. Each of the panelists spoke at length about the need for more collaboration between healthcare providers at all levels including primary care physicians, urgent care facilities, the hospital and the Health Department. All agreed that the only way to achieve the goals of better care at reduced costs can only be achieved if all parties are working together, each doing what they do best. As an example, Dr. Saway pointed to the need to get more patients to turn to primary care providers as an alternative to the emergency room in cases where there isn't an emergency. This would help ease the burden on the hospital's emergency room and would be a much more cost effective way to get treated.

All of the panelists also spoke a lot about tailoring medicine to individuals, a concept also referred to as precision medicine that all agreed is the way to achieve better outcomes for people in the future.

Dr. Rossman, Health Officer for the Howard County Health Department, said the good news is that the number of uninsured has gone down recently, which allows them to concentrate on quality of care rather than focusing on access to care. Dr. Rossman also noted that although the opioid crisis is a problem here in Howard County just like the rest of the country, the number of overdose deaths from opioids started to trend downward in the second half of 2017. Dr. Saway also added that pain is a complex issue to treat and Columbia Medical Practice has a specialist that they refer any patient who is dealing with pain management issues to try and prevent addiction before it starts. 
Dr. Rossman also revealed some big news for our community. With special funding from Governor Larry Hogan,  Grassroots Crisis Center  will soon begin offering screening and referral to treatment around the clock.

As for the future, Snelgrove says the hospital has asked for $5 million from the County Executive as well as $3 million in operational costs to help fund much needed projects like a new observation space, parking facility and a new patient tower for the ICU and NICU Departments. 

Skalny closed the discussion with one last question for panelists about what the business community should know about healthcare in Howard County. Dr. Kromm remarked that business owners are in a unique position to build a culture of health in their workplaces. Dr. Kromm mentioned the  Healthiest Maryland Businesses  program  through the Health Department that offers Workplace Wellness Specialists that can do training, screenings and stress relief plans for your business. Kromm also stressed that the healthcare community and the hospital in particular would love to hear from the business community on what more they can do to help facilitate healthier workplaces and healthier employees.

Thank you to our moderator, panelists, ambassadors and our many generous sponsors that help make events like this lunch possible! We would also like to thank County Executive Allan Kittleman for attending. Please join us for the State of Howard County Address with County Executive Kittleman next month at Turf Valley Resort.
Chamber Staff Works with CAC at Food Bank for Day of Service

Our Chamber staff is so grateful to have had the opportunity to volunteer with the Howard County Food Bank this past Monday as part of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service. 

We got a tour of the Community Action Council of Howard County and the new larger Howard County Food Bank now on Gerwig Lane. We learned all about the services offered and a lot about the food and other household items that are in highest demand for their clients. Items like diapers, pet food and peanut butter. You can find a full list of the Food Bank's most needed items here.
We were lucky enough to volunteer sorting items in the Food Bank and taking in donations collected at area grocery stores. All in all, we collected and sorted over  5,200 pounds of food and household items as a team.

The day was a great experience for our team, but the Community Action Council and the Howard County Food Bank are in need of volunteers all through the year, so if you are able, check out the  Volunteer Center of Howard County  for a list of opportunities for individuals and families! 
Thank you to the Community Action Council of Howard County and the Howard County Food Bank for helping us learn more about your invaluable services and how we can support you in your mission!

We also want to thank Vaughn Greene Funeral Homes for sponsoring our wonderful Chamber team t-shirts for the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service. They kept us warm and gave us a great sense of team spirit!

Maryland Business Owners Under Pressure to Comply with new Mandatory Sick Leave Law

We are just over a week into the 2018 Legislative Session, but there has already been big news on legislation we have been advocating against for a long time. Last Friday, the General Assembly voted to overturn Governor Larry Hogan's veto of the Maryland Healthy Working Families Act. The Chamber supported the veto  because we believe in balanced and predictable leave laws that promote economic development and do not impose unreasonable costs on businesses or their customers. Unfortunately, the legislation as written will go into effect on February 11th. For information about what this means for you, please check out this newsletter from impactHR.
Let the Howard County Council know where you stand on APFO.

Chamber President Leonardo McClarty was joined by members of the Board of Director's Executive Committee including Board Chair Jeff Agnor, Esq., of Davis, Agnor, Rapaport & Skalny, LLC, Chuck Phillips, Jr., of KCI Technologies, Inc., Ryan Brown of Howard County General Hospital: A Member of Johns Hopkins Medicine, Thomas Cormier of Ahold USA, Cole Schnorf of Manekin, LLC, Linda Ostovitz, Esq. of Offit Kurman Attorneys at Law, Gregory Fitchitt of the Howard Hughes Corporation, Lola Kayler of PNC Bank, and Larry Twele of the Howard County Economic Development Authority at a public hearing held by the Howard County Council on January 16th to discuss CB 1 and CB 2, legislation regarding the Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance (APFO). APFO is just one of many among our 2018 Issues for Legislative Action.

President McClarty and members of the Chamber's Board, as well as many other Chamber members, testified at the public hearing to let the County Council know that the recommendations of the Council currently reflected in CB 1 and CB 2 would hinder development within the County. The Chamber, and many other non-profit organizations including the Association of Community Services of Howard County, Bridges to Housing Stability and Volunteers of the Chesapeake, believe that both quality education and affordable housing can be pursued without undermining the other. We also believe that both are essential for the health and success of our county.
As Chamber President McClarty testified, the Chamber strongly believes that CB 1 and CB 2 need to be amended to ensure development and redevelopment in the county is not prevented unnecessarily, and that business owners are able to employ people who will actually be able to live in Howard County.
Here is what we are now asking you, our Chamber members to do. Email the County Council at councilmail@howardcountymd.gov to let them know you oppose CB 1 and CB 2 as written.
Coalition Pushing To Raise Maryland's Minimum Hourly Wage to $15

This Monday, a coalition of Democratic legislators, union leaders and workers launched a campaign to raise Maryland's minimum hourly wage to $15 by 2023. The Chamber opposes minimum wage increases that we believe ultimately hurt entry level workers and employers. You can read more about minimum wage and our positions on lots of other legislation in our 2018 Issues for Legislative Action


Join us at NinjaBe's Ribbon Cutting!

They are one of our newest members and we are so excited to be able to help them cut the ribbon next week!

January 26, 2018 
10:30 - 11:30 a.m.
9301 Snowden River Parkway
Columbia, MD 21046
ACS Accepting Nominations for Audrey Robbins Humanitarian Awards

The Association of Community Services is now accepting nominations for the 2018 Audrey Robbins Humanitarian Awards. Nominations are due by January 25th at 2 p.m. You can find more information about nominating guidelines below.

Free Howard County's Children on Board Information Fair

Get the latest information on Family Child Care, Preschools, Summer Camps, School-Age Programs, Child Care Centers, Infant Programs, Play Groups, Co-Op Nursery Schools and more at Howard County's Children on Board Child Care & Preschool Information Fair.

January 20, 2018 - 1 - 4 p.m.
Ten Oaks Ballroom 
5000 Signal Bell Lane
Clarksville, MD 21029

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21st Annual Chocolate Ball

The Arc of Howard County is now accepting sponsorships and reservations for their annual Chocolate Ball.

March 10, 2018 - 7 p.m. - Midnight
Turf Valley Resort
Ellicott City, MD 21042

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Volunteers Needed for HCPSS's Workforce Development Program

On March 23rd, more than 150 local high school students need your help! The students will be participating in practice job interviews as part of the Howard County School System's Workforce Development Program, Passport to the Future.

March 23, 2018 - 8 a.m. - Noon
Howard Community College
Duncan Hall/Kittleman Room

Welcome to the Chamber!

We are so proud to welcome the following new members this week!
  • Alta At Regency Crest
  • G.R.O.W. By Networking
  • Debra Nesbitt
The following organizations joined the HCCC this week in history!
  • Sergio's Fine Jewelry - 13 Year Anniversary
  • Prostate Cancer Network - 10 Year Anniversary
  • The Hotel at Arundel Preserve - 7 Year Anniversary
  • Victory North - 6 Year Anniversary
  • SECOLARI - 4 Year Anniversary
  • Mr. Appliance of Howard County - 3 Year Anniversary
  • Unanet - 3 Year Anniversary
SBA Baltimore District Office is Moving!

As of January 22, 2018, you will find the Small Business Administration's Baltimore District Office at a new address at 100 South Charles Street, Suite 1201, Baltimore, MD 21201.

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HR Strategies Series at MCE

MCE is offering a three-part human resource strategy group geared towards startups and small businesses.

January 17, 2018 - Noon - 1:30 p.m.
MCE, 9250 Bendix Road
Columbia, MD 21045
USA Bobsled/Skeleton Team Benefit

BMW and USA Bobsled/Skeleton are hosting a free benefit for Team USA's athletes preparing to represent the Stars and Stripes at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games.

January 23, 2018 - 7 - 10 p.m.
InterContinental Washington D.C. - The Wharf
801 Wharf Street, SW

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Join a Committee at the Howard County Chamber of Commerce

Interested in getting more involved with the Chamber? 

Sign up today for any of the following committees:
  • Ambassadors
  • GovConnects
  • Holiday Party
  • Legislative
  • Membership
  • Signature Events
  • YPN

Contact info@howardchamber.com to join a Howard County Chamber of Commerce Committee today!   



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