SMECO Linemen Return Home

During September and October, Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative (SMECO) sent four teams of linemen to help restore power to hurricane-ravaged areas of the Gulf Coast. The last team, which was repairing electrical lines in Louisiana, finished work Tuesday and headed home.

In the week after Hurricane Katrina struck at the end of August, SMECO sent two groups of linemen to help the Singing River and Pearl River Valley electric power associations in southern Mississippi. They were followed by two more groups, who went to Jefferson Davis Electric Cooperative in southwest Louisiana, where Hurricane Rita made landfall. Each group spent nine days in the region.

When the two storms toppled thousands of utility poles, some electric cooperatives in the region were completely unable to deliver power. In some areas of Louisiana, the SMECO linemen encountered major flooding, which brought with it additional hazards -- including snakes and alligators.

The Southern Maryland utility said in a statement that almost 60 SMECO linemen participated on the four teams.

Deadline for Relief Reimbursement

The Charles County Department of Emergency Services issued a statement reminding county, municipal, state and tribal government agencies, as well as private nonprofit groups and faith-based organizations, that Nov. 5 is the deadline for seeking reimbursement for costs associated with helping Hurricane Katrina victims who have come to the county.

A recent presidential declaration for the state of Maryland allows such agencies and groups to recoup 100 percent of costs associated with providing emergency assistance to Katrina victims.

Those seeking reimbursement should contact the Department of Emergency Services at 301-609-3401 or 301-609-3429 by Nov. 5 for forms and information on the process and the documentation required for expenses.

Thomas Stone Raises $4,000

Students at Thomas Stone High School in Waldorf recently presented their principal, L.C. Martin, with a $4,000 check to aid victims of Hurricane Katrina.

The students raised $3,000 in one week through a change drive. That amount was donated to the American Red Cross.

They raised an additional $1,000 through homecoming weekend ticket sales. That money was given to the Salvation Army.

St. Mary's Schools Give $80,000

A tally earlier this month showed that students and staff members in the St. Mary's County public schools had contributed nearly $80,000 to hurricane relief efforts.

Individual schools made the following donations:

Administrative offices -- Staff members donated backpacks filled with school supplies to students in D'Iberville, Miss.

Alternative Learning Center -- $68.

Benjamin Banneker Elementary -- $8,400.

Chopticon High School -- $5,500.

Dynard Elementary -- $1,825.61.

Esperanza Middle -- $3,417.68.

Carver Elementary Annex -- $1,600.

Great Mills High School -- $1,400.

Green Holly Elementary -- $220.

Greenview Knolls Elementary -- $4,550.

Hollywood Elementary -- $9,045.

Leonardtown Elementary -- $2,370.40.

Leonardtown High School -- $15,321.

Leonardtown Middle -- $2,250.05.

Lettie Marshall Dent Elementary -- $4,153.50.

Lexington Park Elementary -- $700.35, plus 40 boxes of school supplies, clothing and water to families in D'Iberville, Miss.

Margaret Brent Middle -- $1,260.50.

Mechanicsville Elementary -- $360, plus 630 stuffed animals to children displaced by the storms.

Oakville Elementary -- $4,100.

Park Hall Elementary -- $1,486.25.

Piney Point Elementary -- $2,500.

Ridge Elementary -- $900.

Spring Ridge Middle -- $820.14.

Town Creek Elementary -- $1,558.12.

White Marsh Elementary -- $5,211.98.