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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Bowie Advises Residents On Fake Violation Notices

Bowie officials say someone has been distributing bogus notices of city code violations, and residents should bring suspect documents to the city clerk's office or to City Hall at 2614 Kenhill Dr.

Several residents have reported receiving letters bearing the name of Mayor G. Frederick Robinson since November. City officials said code violation notices are handled by city staff and do not bear the mayor's signature.

Residents also may call the city clerk at 301-809-3029 to make arrangements to have such letters picked up from their home.

Laurel Among 78 Towns On Statewide GPS Trail

Laurel Mayor Craig A. Moe announced that the city is participating in the Maryland Municipal League's statewide geocache trail. Geocaching is similar to treasure hunting, but instead of a map, participants use a hand-held Global Positioning System device to locate map coordinates.

The trail is intended to promote awareness of and visits to Maryland's cities and towns.

A "geo coin" will be given to the first 500 participants who locate 22 city or town caches. To be eligible, geocachers must pick up a passport at any participating visitor center, use the stamp in each cache on their passports and write in the cache code word.

Maryland's trail includes 78 cities and towns.

Bond Changes Open Door To More Minority Bidders

Changes approved last month in the county's contractor bond program mean that more small and minority-owned businesses will be able to bid on county procurement projects, Prince George's County Executive Jack B. Johnson (D) said in a statement.

The county will no longer require bonds on non-construction contracts less than $100,000, and letters of credit and financial statements in lieu of bonds and waivers of bond requirements will be allowed, based on risk and the type of contract. The time for obtaining bonding has increased from 10 days after a contract is awarded to 30 days.

For information, contact the Minority Business Division at 301-883-6480.

Bowie Deploys Dogs To Stare Down Geese

Bowie is using Geese Police Maryland to reduce the number of Canada geese at Allen Pond Park.

The company uses trained border collies to stalk and stare down -- but not attack -- the geese twice a day, seven days a week. The dogs will work through March.

Park officials took the step after repeated complaints from patrons. The company has done similar work in Laurel for four years.

Program Targets Students Younger Than Driving Age

A safe-driving program, scheduled to be launched in May, will offer training to students at an earlier age than most drivers' education courses.

Participants will drive go-karts in the three-day program, which is being presented by the Greenbelt Police Department and Greenbelt Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 32. Topics to be addressed include traffic laws, safe-driving tactics, road rage and drag racing.

The program will be open to middle and high school students. Participants will receive a certificate at the end of the program, which will be taught by police officers.

The program has been funded by a $15,700 State Farm Good Neighbor Citizenship grant.

-- Compiled by AKEYA DICKSON

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