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A NEWSLETTER BY AND FOR THE EMPLOYEES OF HARFORD COUNTY GOVERNMENT

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Executive Summary: As Year Comes to Close, We Welcome New Director for HR Department
As most county employees are by now aware, we have a new director in place in our Human Resources Department. Last month I asked Janet Schaub to serve as the departments new director, and I am very pleased that she accepted the position.

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Executive Summary HR Update

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David R. Craig Harford County Executive

Janet is someone who needs no introduction for many of you. She has served this county with distinction for 37 years, all of which has been in Human Resources. She has performed the duties of every position within the department at some point in her career, and has been Deputy Director for the last 10 years.

Employee of the Month

Vitamins & Stress Happy Holidays from Human Resources Sustainability Office

It is rare that there is someone available who is as well-prepared to step up and lead an agency as is Janet. I am pleased that she was unanimously approved as director by the County Council on November 12. I also thank Deborah Duvall for serving as director in an acting capacity. HR, and the dedicated employees who work in it, serves a vital role in the administration of government. County government is more than just buildings, roads, snow plows, and mowers. It is people the people who provide the services that our citizens expect, and who do so with dedication, respect, and integrity. The HR issues faced by all local governments are not unlike those faced by small and medium-sized businesses, and they will continue to require significant attention for years to come as a result of future state mandates and federal changes to the American health coverage system through the irreparably flawed system of Obamacare. I feel that compared to other counties in Maryland we have done an excellent job in recent years of making our programs, benefits, and obligations sustainable for the long term, and that fact should provide some peace of mind for county employees and county taxpayers alike. Finally, as we close out 2013 and look ahead to 2014, I thank you all for another positive year of serving the citizens of Harford County. I wish you and your families a happy and healthy holiday season and a very Merry Christmas.
Cordially,

2013 Service Awards Tis the Season to Volunteer 2014 Holiday Schedule Milestones

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David R. Craig, Harford County Executive

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Department of Human Resources Update


Support, Congratulations & Well Wishes
submitted by Janet Schaub

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their support, congratulations, and well wishes during and after my confirmation as Director of Human Resources. The whole process was overwhelming at times but in a good way and very humbling. Our workforce is highly dedicated, hard working, top notch and in my opinion second to none. I am glad to have the opportunity to serve as Director of Human Resources and am proud to be in this role for such a great workforce. The Human Resources Staff would like to wish you and your families a safe and happy holiday season.

Change to Pharmacy Manager with CareFirst


submitted by Beth Griffith

Effective January 1, 2014, CareFirst will be changing the Pharmacy Benefit Manager (PBM) from Argus to CVS. All current authorizations for brand prescriptions will be transferred over to CVS automatically. All mail order prescriptions currently on file will also be transferred to CVS, with the exception of compounds and/or controlled substances which are not permitted to be transferred for legal reasons. Members who are currently receiving compounds and/or controlled substances through the mail order program will received a letter from CareFirst directly instructing them how to handle this issue. As a result of this change, all members will receive new ID cards during the month of December. The new ID cards will go into effect on January 1, 2014. The old ID cards will no longer work after December 31, 2013. If you do not receive your new ID cards by January 1, 2014, you may print a verification of coverage from the CareFirst website by accessing My Account (www.carefirst.com/myaccount). This information will be updated on January 1, 2014. If you have any questions, please contact Beth Griffith at bagriffith@harfordcountymd.gov or Tamara Simmons at tdsimmons@harfordcountymd.gov.

Department of Human Resources 112 Hays Street, Bel Air, MD 21014 410-638-3201 / 410-879-3564

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November Employee of the Month

submitted by Sherrie Johnson

Robert Andrews Named Harford County Employee of the Month for November 2013
Robert Andrews and Mary Chance, Director of Administration

Harford Transit employee praised for going above and beyond


Harford County Department of Community Services employee, Robert Andrews, has been named the Harford County Employee of the Month for November 2013. He works as a Manager with Harford Transit. Andrews was recognized for his efforts to help make administrative processes at the agency more efficient. Specifically, he was nominated for the assistance he provided in helping to set up an online pre-proposal conference as part of the Intelligent Transportation Software project. Andrews proudly and kindly set up all of the necessary equipment for a professional experience. Nancy Hevey of the Department of Procurement nominated Robert Andrews for Employee of the Month because of his hard work and professionalism. By going above and beyond, Robert is making a difference at Harford Transit, said Hevey. On presenting the award to Mr. Andrews, Director of Administration Mary F. Chance stated, Robert is one of the countys most dedicated employees. He is always willing to roll up his sleeves and do whatever is needed in order to provide the best possible service to Harford County residents.

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Vitamins that Help Reduce Stress


submitted by Tamara Simmons

Stress is defined as a nonspecific response of the body to any demand made upon it which results in symptoms such as rise in the blood pressure, release of hormones, quickness of breath, tightening of muscles, perspiration, and increased cardiac activity. Stress is not necessarily negative. Some stress keeps us motivated and alert, while too little stress can create problems. However, too much stress can trigger problems with mental and physical health, particularly over a prolonged period of time. So, it is very important to reduce stress. Avoiding dependence on stimulants such as alcohol, ensuring you eat a healthy diet and learning effective techniques to deal with stress are all important in managing stress.

Vitamins for Stress


Vitamin A helps to mop up toxins that deplete energy levels. Vitamin B1 improves mood and is vital for nerve function. Vitamin B3 regulates sleep patterns. Vitamin B6 is essential for optimum production of the mood-enhancing brain chemical serotonin. Vitamin B12 helps to produce feel-good brain chemicals. Pantothenic acid controls the action of the adrenal glands, which play a crucial part in the stress response. Choline and Inositol have a calming effect. Vitamin C is used up quickly during stress reactions and a deficiency can worsen anxiety and irritability. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant.

Minerals for Stress


Calcium helps you to relax. Chromium stabilizes blood sugar levels. Magnesium reduces stress. Selenium increases the effectiveness of vitamin E. Zinc increases resistance to infection.

More Nutrients to reduce Stress


Omega-3 oils support the immune system. Valerian has long been used to relieve stress.
St John's Wort has a calming effect.

Foods helpful in reducing stress


Whole grains, oats, oily fish, lentils, fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds.

Foods to avoid
Fast-releasing carbohydrates found in sugar, white bread, white rice and refined cereals stimulate the release of the stress hormone cortisol. Stimulants such as coffee, alcohol and nicotine put a strain on body systems. http://www.vitaminsdiary.com/

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The Department of Human Resources wishes you and your family a healthy and happy holiday! In celebration of the holidays, following are a few of our favorite recipes. Apple Crisp by Vanessa Kelly
6 large apples, peeled and thinly sliced ~ Put applies into buttered 13x9x2 baking dish. Dot with butter. Sprinkle with lemon juice and cinnamon Add raisins to apples if desired or substitute peaches for apples. Crumb Mixture 1 cup flour 1 cup sugar 1 tsp. baking powder 1 egg 1 stick melted butter or margarine Crumb Mixture: mix together sugar, flour, baking powder, egg; cut with fork into pea size pieces. Sprinkle over apples, sprinkle with cinnamon. Drizzle melted butter on top and bake. Bake uncovered @ 350 for 45 minutes.

Loaded Baked Potato Soup by Angie Lawson


INGREDIENTS: Real Bacon Bits (found in your local grocery store) 2/3 C butter 2/3 C all-purpose flour 7 C milk 5 large baking potatoes (peeled and cubed into inch squares) medium onion; chopped 2 C shredded cheddar cheese 1 C sour cream 1 tsp salt 1 tsp ground black pepper 3 T extra virgin olive oil Toast or Crusty French bread (if desired) DIRECTIONS: In a large deep skillet place the olive oil and cubed raw potato. Cook over medium heat until slightly softened. Add chopped onion, cook until translucent. Drain off excess oil and remove skillet from stove. In a stockpot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour until smooth (and a slightly yellow color). Gradually stir in milk, whisking constantly until blended and thickened. Once thickened, add potato and onion mixture to the milk mixture. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes. Stir in each individually (once blended in add next ingredient) bacon, cheese, sour cream, salt and pepper. Simmer on low/medium low, stirring frequently until all ingredients have blended. (As it is simmering if the consistency is too thick for your taste, add additional milk a little at a time to get your desired thickness). Continue to simmer on low/medium low until the potatoes are fork tender and no longer firm to the bite. Serve with toast or crusty french style bread.

HOT CRAB DIP RECIPE by Janet Schaub


Ingredients: Pam Cooking Spray 1 (8 oz.) pkg cream cheese (soft) 1 teaspoon Old Bay 1 lb. crabmeat 1 teaspoon dry mustard cup grated cheddar cheese cup mayonnaise 1 (8 ounce) container sour cream 1 teaspoon celery seed 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper teaspoon Worcestershire sauce Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a glass loaf plan or casserole dish with cooking spray. Mix cream cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, half of the cheddar cheese, Old Bay, dry mustard, celery seed and crushed red pepper together in a bowl. Gently fold crabmeat into cheese mixture; pour into the prepared loaf pan or casserole dish and top with remaining cheddar cheese. Bake in the preheated oven until dip is bubbling, about 20 minutes. Serve with crackers of your choice or baguette bread slices.

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Sweet Potato Cheesecake by Tamara Simmons


Ingredients - Cheesecake 1 cup all-purpose flour 1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened 1/4 cup granulated sugar 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 egg yolk 3 medium sweet potatoes, cooked and mashed (about 2 cups) 1 tablespoon butter or margarine, melted 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1 teaspoon vanilla 3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened 1 cup granulated sugar 4 eggs Crumb Topping 1/2 cup Gold Medal all-purpose flour 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar 6 tablespoons butter or margarine, softened 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 cup chopped pecans Directions Heat oven to 400F. In medium bowl, stir 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup butter, 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and the egg yolk until mixture forms a ball. Pat about two-thirds of the dough on bottom only of 10-inch springform pan (with side removed) to make bottom crust 1/8 inch thick. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until crust just begins to brown around edge. Reduce oven temperature to 300F. Attach side to pan. Pat remaining dough about 1 inch up inside of pan. In medium bowl, beat sweet potatoes, 1 tablespoon butter, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, the nutmeg and vanilla with electric mixer on low speed until blended; set aside. In large bowl, beat cream cheese and 1 cup sugar on medium speed about 1 minute or until smooth. Beat in sweet potato mixture on low speed about 1 minute or until blended. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Spoon batter into crust in pan. Place springform pan in larger pan on oven rack. Pour very hot water into larger pan to one-third the height of springform pan. Bake cheesecake about 1 hour 30 minutes, adding very hot water to larger pan as needed, until center is set. Meanwhile, in small bowl, stir flour, brown sugar, butter and cinnamon until crumbly. Stir in pecans. Set Crumb Topping aside. Sprinkle Topping over cheesecake. Bake about 30 minutes longer or until topping is set. Remove from pan of water. Cool cheesecake 30 minutes. Loosen side from pan; remove. Refrigerate uncovered 3 to 4 hours or until chilled. Store covered in refrigerator.

Oatmeal Lace Cookies by Sharon Ballweg


1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 cup brown sugar 1 large egg 1/2 tsp vanilla extract 1 1/2 cups quick cooking or rolled oats (not instant) 1 tbsp all purpose flour 1/4 tsp salt Preheat oven to 325F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a small bowl, melt the butter and allow to cool slightly, for 2-3 minutes. In a large bowl, whisk together sugars, egg and vanilla extract. Pour in the cooled, melted butter and whisk to combine. Add in oats, flour and salt, and stir with a wooden spoon or spatula until well combined. Allow batter to stand for 5 minutes. Scoop 1 teaspoon sized balls of dough and place onto prepared baking sheet, leaving about 3 inches between cookies to allow room to spread. Bake for 14-16 minutes, or until crisp and golden. Allow cookies to cool for 4-5 minutes on the baking sheet to give them time to firm up, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.

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Triple Chocolate Brownies by Katherine Shealey


Ingredients

Chocolate Delight Dessert by Beth Griffith 1 stick butter 1 cup chopped walnuts 1 large pkg. cream cheese 2 small pks. Instant chocolate pudding 1 cup flour 3 cups milk 2 large containers Cool Whip 1 cup powdered sugar Mix butter, flour, and 1/2 cup of the walnuts. Press into the bottom of the pan and bake at 350 F for 15 minutes or until light brown. Mix Cool Whip, cream cheese and powdered sugar until blended. Spread n top of cooled crust. Mix chocolate pudding mix with milk. Spread on top of Cool Whip/ cream cheese layer. Spread another container of Cool Whip on Top. Sprinkle remainder of walnuts on top.

3 sticks plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 12 ounces best-quality bittersweet chocolate 6 eggs 1 3/4 cups superfine sugar 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup white chocolate buttons, chips, or morsels 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate buttons, chips or morsels Approximately 2 teaspoons confectioners' sugar, for garnish Directions Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Melt the butter and dark chocolate together in a large heavy based pan over a low heat. In a bowl or large measuring jug, beat the eggs together with the superfine sugar and vanilla extract. Allow the chocolate mixture to cool a little, then add the egg and sugar mixture and beat well. Fold in the flour and salt. Then stir in the white chocolate buttons or chips, and the semisweet chocolate buttons or chips. Beat to combine then scrape and pour the brownie mixture into the prepared tin. Bake for about 25 minutes. You can see when the brownies are ready because the top dries to a slightly paler brown speckle, while the middle remains dark, dense and gooey. Even with such a big batch you do need to keep checking on it: the difference between gooey brownies and dry ones is only a few minutes. Remember, too, that they will continue to cook as they cool. To serve, cut into squares while still warm and pile up on a large plate, sprinkling with confectioners' sugar pushed with a teaspoon through a small sieve.

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Congratulations to the 2013 Service Award Recipients


This is the time of year when we recognize Harford County employees for their years of service. Certificates, pins, and gifts for 5, 10, 15, and 20 year award recipients have been delivered to the various departments. Please accept these gifts as a small token of appreciation for all that you do to make Harford County the best place to live, work, and raise a family. On November 13, 2013, a service awards dinner was held to honor employees who celebrated 25, 30, 35, and 40 years of service at the Bayou Restaurant in Havre de Grace. Congratulations to the following service award recipients: Alexander, Robert Armstrong, Catherine Arnold, Mark Arrington, Monti Ashford, Mark Ayres, Kimberly Baird, Rebecca Barker, II, Coy Barnes, Janet Baugh, Diane Bolt, Gary Boyd, Michael Braun, Heatherleigh Brown, Patricia Buchanan, Jr. Forney Buckley, Christine Buehler, Koren Bullock, William Burgess, Bradley Burnham, Michael Butler, Kathleen Carroll, Mark Carroll-Zang, Joyce Cauley, Peter Classon, Eric Comeau, Michael Cox, Benjamin Cunningham, Randall Cupp, David Dassele, Leroy Davis, Jane Marie Dawson, Donald Dawson, Glenn Delp, Timothy Denhard, Meghan Desell, III, William DeVaughn, Shirley 5 15 25 5 25 15 5 25 20 5 40 15 5 5 5 25 10 5 10 5 15 30 15 5 15 5 5 15 25 10 5 10 20 30 10 25 25 Digennaro, Heidi Dobson, Michele Dorman, Joseph Drury, Kenneth Emge, Lisa Ewers, Kevin Ferriter, Erin Flenner, Christine Forth, Lauren Gallo, John Gardiner, Richard Gardner, David Gemmill, Kenneth Gessner, Anne Gildeleon, William Gosnell, David Graham, John Granruth, Deborah Greenwood, Margaret Griffith, Beth Griffith, Jeffrey Hammond, Patricia Haney, Tamara Hannibal, Jennifer Hanzlik, Laura Harlee, James Harple, Jeffrey Headley, Steven Hendrix, Elizabeth Henn, Gregory Hess, Robert Heuer, Karen Hilton, Alvin Hodge, James Hoover, II, Edwin Howard, Christine Howell, Mearl Hullana, Ferdinand 20 15 10 5 20 5 5 20 5 10 20 20 35 20 5 25 10 35 15 20 20 5 10 10 10 5 20 20 15 5 5 20 5 15 5 20 25 5 Jay, Shanna Jeunette, Erica Johnsen, Robert Johnson, Ginelle Kahl, David Keithley, Sherry Kelley, Linda Kelly, Sr., Paul Kendzejeski, Paul Keys, Justin Kimmel, Kevin Kobus, Cheryl Koerber, Janice Kolb, Ronald Krejci, Marika Lamana, Hohn Landgraf, Todd Lane, Michael Lentz, Ronald Leone, Bryan Lightner, Bryan Ling, Nancy Lloyd, Patricia Long, Danita Lottes, Clayton Lykens, Cindy Macgill, Jr., James Maerz, Cheryl Magness, Jonathan Maley, Edward Mandas, Sharon Manning, Thomas Manuel, Herbert Marsilio, John Maxwell, III, Edward May, Lois Mayfield, Robert McClune, Anthony
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2013 Service Award Recipients (continued)


McCord, Robert McCracken, Patrick McDonald, Leonard McDowell, Anne McKay, Matthew McKena, Marlana Michael, Matthew Moore, James Murphy, Donna Myers, Dale Myers, Linda Nahrgang, Robert Nalls, Diana Panowicz, Raphael Pistel, Thomas Ploener, Linda Polk, Rhonda Price, Susan Pritt, Andrew Rahll, Cynthia Ramer, Jeffrey Rapisarda, Michael Rawl, Tina Reed, Michael Reid, Bradley Rexroth, Ralph Richardson, James Richardson, Jennifer Roberson, Amy Rodriguez, Jr., Antonio Russell, Forrest Schafer, Jr., Jerome Schatz, Lauretta Schultz, Jr., John Sexton, Anthony Sexton, Christoher Sexton, Kenneth Shenk, III, Charles Shillman, Jr. George Shunk, Sara 15 5 5 25 5 10 15 25 10 5 5 5 15 35 15 10 25 15 5 20 20 10 25 5 25 20 15 10 20 5 20 10 5 5 25 15 20 10 5 5 Silva, Michael Simmons, Tamara Smith, Michael Smith, Paul Snakovsky, Andrew Snyder, Troy Spence, Kimberly Spencer, William Stoermer, Sr., Robert Stower, Jr., Robert Streeter, Suzanne Swank, James Taylor, Kevin Tiedeman, Katrina Tine, Brenda Tipton, Charmaine Trageser, Joyce Turner, Steven Valentine, Martha Vanden Eynden, Sharon Vergari, Michael Vocke, William Wainwright, Jr., Irvin Walker, Richard Walls, Deborah Warfield, Christine Watikins, Michael Webb, George Webberking, Eric Weer, Jeffrey West, Saundra Whalon, James White, Traves Whitehead, Kathleen Williams, James Wood, Joe Wright, Janet Yorkston, George Zeiler, Karen 35 15 5 10 5 5 25 10 25 10 5 20 20 5 25 10 5 10 5 15 5 40 20 5 20 20 15 20 5 5 5 5 15 15 10 15 20 10 5

REMIINDER: Employees celebrating 25, 30, 35, or 40 years of service have 30 days to select a gift of choice from the service awards packet provided to you. If no selection is made within 30 days, you will automatically receive a set of etched glasses as your gift.
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HARFORD COUNTY GOVERNMENT

2014 Holiday Schedule

January 1, New Years Day January 20, Martin Luther King Day February 17, Presidents Day May 26, Memorial Day July 4th, Independence Day September 1, Labor Day November 11, Veterans Day November 27, Thanksgiving Day November 28, Day after Thanksgiving December 25th, Christmas Day

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Milestones

We would like to include your milestone in the next HCG Connection. Please submit information by the 15th of the month to saballweg@harfordcountymd.gov .

Is there someone in your workplace who goes above and beyond for Harford County?

Sharon BallwegEditor & Graphic Design Department of Human Resources 410-638-3019 saballweg@harfordcountymd.gov

Why not nominate this individual as Employee of the Month?


What a great way to recognize your co-workers for their contribution to Harford County. For details contact Sharon Ballweg at
saballweg@harfordcountymd.gov

David R. Craig, Harford County Executive


Preserving Harfords past; Promoting Harfords future

Sherrie Johnson Contributor Office of the County Executive 410-638-3420 sajohnson@harfordcountymd.gov Rebecca Macek - Contributor Department of Community Services 410-638-3389 ramacek@harfordcountymd.gov Erin Ferriter-Contributor Sustainability Office 410-638-4707 eferriter@harfordcountymd.gov Joan Ingold Contributor Information and Communication Technology 410-638-1231 jsingold@harfordcountymd.gov

or call 410-638-3019

Published by
Harford County Department of Human Resources Janet L. Schaub, Director

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