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Inmate Public Safety Works crew comes to the aid of flood-damaged Port Deposit

photo1September 15, 2011 - The DPSCS Public Safety Works inmate labor effort is allowing incarcerated men who are soon to return to society the chance to give back to a flood-ravaged city.

When the Susquehanna rose to it third-highest level on record after days of rain from the remnants of a hurricane, and the power company had to open all the floodgates at Conowingo Dam, the 800 citizens of Port Deposit three miles downstream knew they were in trouble.

When the water receded, the damage was bad. The town, whose Main Street is lined with houses separated from the river only by a raised railroad embankment, suffered one of its worst floods since Agnes in 1972.

DPSCS Secretary Gary Maynard offered a Division of Correction inmate crew to help. The seven men from Baltimore City Correctional Center arrived in the riverside town on Thursday, September 15, and within hours, had made their mark, shoveling a truckfull of sludge out of Main Street storm drains.

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Port Deposit, with just two municipal public works men on its payroll, couldnít possibly keep up with a catastrophic flood cleanup effort on its own.

The inmates will continue their work in the town, helping wherever they can for as long as needed.

Public Safety Works has made its mark all over the state of Maryland. Inmates continue to help towns and non-profits get jobs done that would be much more difficult---if not impossible---to do without inmate help. In the case of Port Deposit, itís help thatís allowing a flooded town to recover just a little bit faster.